Shoe-shining in La Antigua Guatemala

Shoe shining in Antigua

Shoe-shining is not out of time as some people commented on Nuno’s Shoe shiners. Well, shoe shining is not a forgotten trade in Latin America. I have posted three photos with shoe-shiners: Antigua’s child labor on May 22nd, Tourists and shoe-shining boy on May 7th, and Photographer and shoe-shine boy on May 2nd (just in case you want to see them). Unlike Nuno, I have used this guy’s service. Shoe-shining in Antigua costs about US$0,25 at present time and it has been the same in the last five years.

Side note: I almost forgot to tell you, an interesting and funny fact, about the policeman. He has gotten into trouble before with his superiors because he was photographed years before around September 15th and his photo displayed on the front page of Guatemala’s largest national newspaper Prensa Libre. This happens twice in two different years and two different national newspapers. I really hope he does not get into trouble this time for appearing in this humble photoblog.

Are there shoe-shiners in your city? have you ever used their service?

© 2006 – 2013, Rudy Giron. All rights reserved.

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  • Norma

    No shoe shiners in Sequim, that I know of, but in Seattle, ah, yes. I have not personally used a shoe shiner. Most of the time it is men I see getting their shoes shined.

  • is he a police? he’s cool to let you photograph him in that positin 😉

  • Hi Rudy! I don’t use them but if i had shoes with that size i would start.

  • sompopo

    He does not seem to happy about having his picture taken does he?

  • Hi Rudy,
    There’s only one place I know in Sydney that does shoe shining and that’s in the Strand, the old building dated 1891 where I showed people eating, it had a wonderful paving design! I supposed they’ve kept it (or reinstated it) because it was there originally. I’ll try and go back one of these days and get a picture!
    Love from Sydney,

  • I didn’t quite get what this policeman had been reprimanded twice before, were the photos offensive or are the police not supposed to appear in photos anywhere anytime anyway?

  • There used to be shoe-shiners here in KL. Not anymore. Erm, aren’t men in uniform supposed to shine their own shoes???

  • patsy poor

    i think the large cities have shoe shiners, but none in ar. that i have seen. arkansas people are noted for going bare foot.

  • Jerry

    I am at present in your beautiful city, visiting from East Texas. I love this place and this website is a great link to the place I love. My favorite photos are the faces of the people.

  • I don’t believe there to be any shoe shiners here in NM. At least I have not seen any!

  • We still have a few of them in Jakarta. Oh, and I totally agree with Edwin 🙂

  • Krisz: I did not ask for permission to take his photograph; as a matter of fact, he was not aware, I took about about four shots until he look up, which is the photo posted here. He is a nice guy and that is why he’s gotten in trouble before.

    Sompopo: He did mind; he even asked me to send the photos to his email address.

    Nathalie: He is such nice fellow and he’s gotten in trouble because of that. He said that about four years ago, on September 15th, he helped some kids inflate some balloons for the parade and his photo was taken at the moment he’s got the balloon, on on his mouth, almost completely inflated.

    Edwin: Shoe-shining is very inexpensive here and many people do it, including ‘men in uniforms’. People derive the same pleasure from the act of having their shoes shone as people do with barbers. Wow, KL is such a modern city that it does not have shoe-shiners anymore!

    Jerry: Wish you the best of times in Antigua. Be careful though, many people have visited La Antigua Guatemala as tourists, passing-by or while taking Spanish classes, and never left. I have some many stories and chronicles about that.


    I am currently collecting information on the craft and art side of actual shoe shining…the use of polish,rags,brushes,texture of shoes and different leathers requiring a different technigue for different leathers….social interactions, along class lines, of thos who shine shoes and those who recieve the service…any and all information will be appreciated….recently saw shoe shiner in Los Vegas at big hotel….Hollywood Park in Los Angles has a three chair shone shine stand…..gamblers and playboys get their shoes shined daily……efe

  • Lindsey

    That old man is still shining shoes?! I saw him so many times.

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