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Dominican Republic

North America

To which language should you transalte to localize in the Dominican Republic?

What we know from our community

Spanish is the official language of Dominican Republic, a Caribbean country known as the cradle of the New World, a postcard, if you will, of many of Modern Civilization’s firsts.

Wrought by the accident of cultures—first by chance, then by force, later by will—Dominican Spanish, stemming from the Andalusian Spanish (the colonizer’s language), it’s colorful, and the boisterous locals use it in loud, fast-paced conversations that may drive unseasoned listeners mad, with apocopes and omissions of letters and the typical “seseo,” a vice of the vernacular in which the /z/ and the /c/ are indistinct from the /s/. But depending on where in the country you find yourself, you may also experience firsthand the substitution of the /l/ for the /r/ (South and East), or /l/ and the /r/ for the /i/ (North), while enjoying the witty colloquialisms.

A closer look into Dominican Republic will reveal the rich tapestry of far and wide cultures leaving their imprint on the local way of life, gastronomy and, of course, language, as Africanisms, Gallicisms and Anglicisms, all inherited from the enslaving forces thrust by the trade winds upon the indigenous peoples of the Caribbean that, along traces of the now extinct Taíno language, perfuse its foundation. 

Fast-forward to present times, the Dominican culture established on European, African and Taíno ones, continues to enthusiastically integrate idioms and loanwords into their lexicon, driven by large human flows from the Americas and neighboring Caribbean countries. The Spanish of Dominican Republic tells the story of three continents.


El español es el idioma oficial de República Dominicana, un país caribeño conocido como la cuna del Nuevo Mundo, una postal, por así decirlo, de muchas de las primicias de la Civilización Moderna.

Forjado por el accidente de culturas —primero por casualidad, luego por la fuerza, por último, por voluntad— el español dominicano, derivado del español andaluz, la lengua de los colonizadores, es colorido, y los bulliciosos nativos lo usan a todo pulmón en conversaciones de acelerado ritmo que pueden llevar al borde al oyente inexperto, por sus apócopes y omisiones de letras y su típico “seseo”, un vicio de la lengua vernácula en el que la /z/ y la /c/ son indistintas de la /s/. Dependiendo de en cuál lugar del país uno se encuentre, también pudiera experimentar de primera mano la sustitución de la /l/ por la /r/ (sur y este), o de la /l/ y la /r/ por la /i/ (norte), mientras disfruta de los ingeniosos coloquialismos.

Una mirada más cercana República Dominicana revelará el rico tapiz de lejanas culturas que han dejado huellas en su cotidianidad, gastronomía, y, por supuesto, en su lengua, como africanismos, galicismos y anglicismos, todos heredados de las fuerzas esclavistas arrojadas por los vientos alisios sobre los pueblos indígenas del Caribe, y que junto a restos de la extinta lengua taína, perfunden su fundamento. 

Un salto hasta los tiempos actuales, y la cultura dominicana cimentada sobre las culturas europea, africana y taína, continúa integrando con entusiasmo modismos y extranjerismos en su léxico, impulsados por grandes flujos humanos de las Américas y los países vecinos del Caribe. El español de República Dominicana cuenta la historia de tres continentes.

Julissa, Legal Interpreter/Translator



Official language
Spanish (Dominican spanish) 85.3%

Actual languages
Haitian Creole 2%, Samana English 1,5%, Italian 0.1%, Chinese 0.1%


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Capital: Santo Domingo
Currency: Dominican Peso
Population: 10,9 m
Population density: 227/km2


GDP: 94.24 billion USD (2020)
GDP per capita: 8,603.8 USD ‎(2020) ‎
Exports: $11 billion (2020)


Internet users: 79.8% penetration, 8.78 million 
Unemployment rate: 6.1% (2020)
Urbanisation:  81.83% (2019)
Literacy: 93.78% (2018)


Numbering system
Arabic numbering system, point as decimal separator and comma as separator of thousands

Date format: yyyy-mm-dd / mm-dd-yyyy
Time: 24h time system (am/pm)
Country code: 001-809, 001-829, 001-849

Language data sources: Worldatlas/Britannica//EF/Wikipedia; Demography data sources: IMF/Worldometers; Conventions data source: Wikipedia; Economy data sources: WTO/OEC/CIA/Esomar/Datareportal; Statistics data sources: Datareportal/WorldBank/UN/UNESCO/CEIC/IMF/Culturalatlas/Commisceoglobal

Facts and data


$17.6 billion (2020).  Cars ($21.7B), Vehicle Parts ($14.6B), Delivery Trucks ($11.6B), Broadcasting Equipment ($9.74B), and Gold ($8.98B), importing mostly from United States ($218B), China ($49.5B), Mexico ($16.1B), Germany ($10.9B), and Japan ($8.14B).

Financial inclusion factors (over 15 years of  age)
• 55% have an account with a financial institution
• 16% have a credit card
• 3.9% have a mobile money account
• 13% make online purchases

Ease of doing business
Very easy to conduct business (rated 60 out of 100). 15th out of 32 countries in Latin America and the Caribbean, 115th worldwide out of 190 countries (2020, World Bank)

$11 billion (2020).  Gold ($1.77B), Instruments and appliances used in medical, surgical, dental or veterinary sciences ($1.3B), Cigars, cheroots, cigarillos and cigarettes; of tobacco or of tobacco substitutes ($838M), Electrical apparatus for switching ($811M), Bananas, including plantains; fresh or dried ($348M), exporting mostly to United States ($5.35B), Switzerland ($1.22B), Haiti ($751M), Canada ($477M), and Netherlands ($420M).

Main local online stores, and, other top retail sites include

Economic freedom
‘Mostly free’ (63 out of 100) 16th amongst 32 Caribbean and Latin American countries 8th worldwide out of 186 countries (2019, Heritage Foundation and Wall Street Journal)

Global Innovation Index

Ranked 13th out of 18 Latin American and Caribbean countries, 93rd out of 132 worldwide.

The Global Innovation Index captures the innovation
ecosystem performance of 132 economies and tracks the most recent global innovation trends.

Economy data sources: WTO/OEC/CIA/Esomar/Datareportal

Service Imports (2018)

Source: OEC

Service Exports (2018)

Source: OEC

Most complex products by PCI

Product Complexity Index measures the knowledge intensity of a product by considering the knowledge intensity of its exporters

Source: OEC

Most specialised products by RCA Index

Specialisation is measured using Revealed Comparative Advantage, an index that takes the ratio between Dominican Republic observed and expected exports in each product

Source: OEC

Export Opportunities by Relatedness

Relatedness measures the distance between a country's current exports and each product, the barchart show only products that Dominican Republic is not specialized in

Source: OEC

Leading online retail payment methods in the Dominican Republic in 2018

Sources: Indra Sistemas; Minsait; Analistas Financieros Internacionales



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T-Index ranks countries according to their potential for online sales. It estimates the market share of each country in relation to global e-commerce.

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Media language
French, English, Spanish

Information channels
Media ownership is concentrated in a few influential hands. There are scores of terrestrial TV channels and hundreds of radio networks, most of them commercial. Journalists reporting on the drugs trade and corruption are exposed to possible threats and reprisals, says Reporters Without Borders.

The press

El Caribe – daily
Hoy – daily
Listin Diario – daily
El Nacional – evening and Sunday
Diario Libre – daily


Corporacion Estatal de Radio y Television (CERTV) (Canal 4) – government-owned
Color Vision (Canal 9)
Telemicro (Canal 5)
Telesistema (Canal 11)
Teleantillas (Canal 2)
Antena Latina (Canal 7)
– state-owned
Cadena de Noticias (CDN)
– news-based


Cadena de Noticias (CDN) Radio – news station
Corporacion Estatal de Radio y Television (CERTV) – government-owned
Rumba FM – one of Santo Domingo’s many merengue, salsa stations

News agency

Dominican Today – online news in English
DR1 – online news in English

Media data source: BBC

Internet Data

Internet users
79.8% penetration, 8.78 million 

Share of web traffic by device
50.69% mobile phones, 45.45% computers (laptops and desktops), 3.81% tablet devices, others 0.o5%

Average speed of mobile Internet connection
18.11  Mbps

Average speed of fixed Internet connection
15.87 Mbps

Mobile connection as a percentage of total population: 82.6%

Percentage of mobile connections that are broadband (3G-5G): 86.8%

Most popular web search engines
Google (94.53%), Bing (4.41%), Yahoo (0.7%),   DuckduckGo (0.15%), Ecosia (0.09%), Petal Search (0.05%)

Most used social media
Facebook (86.26%), Instagram (4.79%), Pinterest (4.41%), YouTube (2.86%) Twitter (1.43%), Tumbrl (0.89 %)

Internet data sources: Datareportal/Statcounter

Social statistics

Life expectancy
74 years (2020)

Heathcare expenditure
5.93 of GDP (2019)

Religion is heavily practised in the Dominican Republic. People are very religious, even those who do not attend church. Most families go to mass on Sunday or at least once a week. Not baptizing children, living together without being married, or getting married outside of the church are frowned upon. People from Catholic families get married in the Church. There are different religions, but Catholicism is still the most prevalent. 

Social class is very important. Members of the dominant classes are sure of a good future. The higher your class, the more doors are open to you. Society is made up of a number of social classes: the ruling class, political class, professionals who work for large companies, working class, lower class and the very poor. There are millionaires in the ruling class and the nouveaux riche make up the political class. Employees of large companies as well as professionals (engineers, doctors, lawyers, professors, etc.) have a high status in society due to their higher income level. People’s diet, going to private school, using private hospitals and belonging to social clubs all reflect social differences. In fact, everything is related to class.

Average age of the population
28 yrs (2020) 

Dominican society is very chauvinistic. Nevertheless, clause 8 of the country’s Constitution discusses sexual equality and clearly states that, under the law, all people are equal, regardless of their sex, race or social status. Women are very much involved in the community and in politics. Even if there is still a long road ahead, women are carving out their place in society and more and more salaries are becoming equal. The majority of university students are women and as a result, play an important part in society, even if they are not sufficiently well represented in politics. Still, the country’s vice-president is a woman and 90% of the provincial governors are women. There are also a lot of women who have high-level management positions.

The Data Factbook is a work in progress project. Our community is helping us to fill it up always with new and updated data. Your contribution is precious. If you want to help us, please write your advices at

Languages research

Languages spoken in the Dominican Republic

The geographical distribution of languages that you will find in the maps published in this section is a work in progress. Our community is helping us to fill it up with always new and updated data. Your contribution is precious. If you want to help us, please write to

Photo credit: Asael Pena, Unsplash