Bars and discotecas in Ecuador handle cover charges in different ways. Being required to spend a pre-defined amount of money on drinks, instead of having to pay a cover charge. Being required to pay a cover charge that includes one or more “free” drinks, though your options may be limited.
To save you money and possible arguments with bar staff, it's best to be aware before you go. Paying a cover charge, and buying individual drinks in the discoteca. Some discotecas will issue you a debit card when you enter.
There's a whole contingent of young people from nearby Guayaquil who would prefer to escape the city for the beach every weekend.
Also, the surf town's casual vibe and relaxed policies on marijuana attract lots of other South Americans from Argentina, Chile, and Colombia, as well as foreigners from around the world.
For both men and women, jeans, t-shirts, and sneakers are fine.
Just follow the music, and you should have no trouble finding the action.
Nightlife in Ecuador is pretty quiet Sunday through Wednesday unless you know the right places to go to (hint: ask the locals).
In Cuenca, you'll find the Zona Rosa along Calle Larga, within easy walking distance of the historic center.
Most of the bars and discotecas in the pueblos, such as Banos and Montanita, are centrally located.
Banos has an excellent reputation for partying, but the small surf and hippie hangout of Montanita on the Pacific Coast is the party capital of the country.