If you have a naturally impatient nature, I recommend you set your watch ten minutes backward before coming to Spain. If someone says ‘5:30,’ they probably mean 5:40 or 5:45. Spaniards are naturally more relaxed and easy going. They place much less importance on the value of time. Try not to get mad if people don’t arrive on the dot here; it’s just their culture.
Besides adjusting your social clock, you also have to adjust your eating habits. Spaniards eat at much later hours than we do in the United States. I normally have lunch here at 2 p.m. or 2:30 p.m., sometimes 3 p.m. Dinner is anytime between 9 and 10 p.m., depending on when everyone gets back. I actually really like this schedule, as I have a much longer afternoon to get things done before heading back for dinner. Since eating together is very important in the Spanish culture, they eat later to guarantee that everyone is at home.
Sleeping hours are slightly different here too. Since dinner is so much later, people usually go to bed between midnight and 1 a.m. Due to this, people typically get up slightly later, at 8 a.m. or 9 a.m. During the weekends, people stay out even later. It’s very common for teenagers to ‘fiesta’ (party) until 5 or 6 in the morning. I personally like my sleep, but, hey, you do you.