Many first names have a Spanish equivalent. For fun, find out if you have a Spanish name before you go so that you can use it to introduce yourself. Hotel workers, guides, and locals will be able to remember your name much better if it's something familiar that they can easily pronounce.
The first few days I was in Mexico I noticed that locals had a hard time saying my name, "Edward" or even "Ed." On the third day I began introducing myself as "Eduardo," and they picked up on it immediately, remembered it, and would yell "Hola, Eduardo!" from far away. It makes you feel much more welcome. A security guard even began calling me "Lalo," which I found out was the short form of the name. Cool!
(My brother "Jon" called himself "Juan". It's not even incorrect, it's just the same name translated.)
heres a few common words/phrases i believe you should learn:
hola (pronounced o-la!) - hello
gracias - thank you
muchos gracias - many thanks
caliente - hot
aqui - here (can be used on bus rides)
muy bien - very well
cuanto - how much?
la cuenta - check please
poquito - little bit
buenas dias - good morning
buenas noches - good evening
buenas tardes - good afternoon
amigo - friend
adios - goodbye
In Mexico it is not common practise to bring the bill to your table until it is asked for.When you are ready,just say'La cuenta,por favor'(the bill please),to your waiter.Do not forget the 41$ tax you have to pay when you fly home.Do not forget to keep your tourist card(visa) as you have to hand it in when you fly home.
Never sit with your hands under the table, it is considered rude and not trusting. I guess they still have cowboys that sit with there guns under the table? Also, do not stand with your hands in your pockets. I don't know why. If you can use basic spanish it helps when you gotta find a bathroom. Bring your own toilet paper in some places. We met many nice people on our tours we took.
Spanish is Mexico's mother tongue, but English is widely spoken. In the local markets, barganing is expected. It also seems to help if you habla espanol!
For the most part the prople are very gracious and outgoing.