25 Things That Visitors Will Find Most Surprising About The United States

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Picture of paranoidandroid32 achievements

+5 1. paranoidandroid commented 8 years ago

Land of the free...customers.
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-5 2. Gringo_el_Diablo commented 8 years ago

#1 that doesn't make any sense :x America is awesome
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+21 3. Malakyte commented 8 years ago

"25 - People almost never carry cash" // "22 - Tipping happens, a lot..."
Picture of thundersnow58 achievements

+6 4. thundersnow commented 8 years ago

#3 When you give them your credit card in a restaurant you add 20% (tipping rate) or less if you were very unhappy with the service, to the total of your bill, write it on the receipt, sign and you're done. I submitted this because I found this video very accurate in describing customs in the US, I also ran it by an American friend who confirmed the accuracy. :)
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+8 5. funkyging commented 8 years ago

03:37 but that store is a UK store, asda...notice the pound sign =P
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+4 6. Zebulun commented 8 years ago

Number 6 is a bit off, kids aren't expected to leave @ 18. Most go to college for the next few years, return home for short period of time after graduation (1 maybe 2 or 3 years?), then move out.

BTW, what kind of massive boil is on that guys thumb 5:00
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+9 7. dopkop commented 8 years ago

He kind of touched on this but… What I found most surprising when I came to the US is that Americans, despite what a lot of foreigners tend to think (loud, uneducated, arrogant) are actually amazingly wonderful caring people. I quickly learned to delineate the government and foreign-policy from individual Americans and how willing they are to give and take care of others. I'm glad to now live in a country where people are proud of what they are, for good reason!
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+9 8. schlafanzyk commented 8 years ago

As much as these are mostly true, all of the mentioned facts have a pretty wide range across the country as well, so take them with a grain of salt and don't expect them to be 100% accurate with every American you meet or everywhere you show up. The diversity of the individuals, communities, landscape and influences makes generalizing like this virtually impossible.

Southern California is almost like a different nation compared to Vermont or Wisconsin. Dallas or Houston are nothing like Austin even though they are in the same state, much like Seattle, Washington is nothin like Washington D.C.
Meanwhile, many small local places only accept cash, no credit cards. In some areas kids never really move out, just move into a different room, floor or trailer on the same property etc.

So remember that this list is written from an average middle-class person's bubble. The country is in constant change everywhere. The bigness of everything is probably the most reliable constant fact. But in the end, Bill Gates, Bill Clinton, Bill O'Reilly, Bill Burr, the newborn child of an illegal immigrant parent inside U.S. borders - they all are just as American as a redneck farm boy who thinks Europe is a country.

And please for the love of Hitchens appreciate the friendliness instead of calling it fake and being annoyed by it. It's just the good people trying to balance out for the seemingly infinite amount of assholes everywhere else in order to make life just a little bit more pleasant and enjoyable.

/End Wall-Of-Text
Picture of Cyrille47 achievements

+1 9. Cyrille commented 8 years ago

#20 What was more surprising to me when I went to the US is that people drive on ALL lanes and are allowed to overtake (well, technically undertake) from an internal lane.

In most european countries, internal lanes can be used only if you are going faster than cars on the external ones or if there is no place for your car on the external lanes. Undertaking is also forbidden.
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+4 10. fjwjr commented 8 years ago

At first I thought this was the views of visitors to the US which would have excused some of the blatant errors in what was being said. But I guess this is the view of an American that doesn't know a lot about America.

It would take a video twice as long to correct all the problems with this one.

For example; he blames obesity on lack of access to medical care instead of lack of movement or a bad diet.....
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+2 11. thundersnow commented 8 years ago

Really good comments up there, always interesting too to read how people perceive a country they are not from.

#9 I personally get very annoyed with "left lane hoggers" who drive very slowly and refuse to move over to the right lanes, which forces me to pass them on the right, which is actually illegal.
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-2 12. sux2bu commented 8 years ago

#11 You must not really be from the US. There is no state in the country where overtaking a vehicle on the right is illegal if there are two or more lanes going in the same direction. If you pass on the right by using the emergency pull- off lane though, that will get you a ticket.....and not to the policeman's ball. >:)
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-2 13. Cyrille commented 8 years ago

#12 I think #11 is referring to most european countries, where it is illegal.
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+3 14. sunnydaze4me commented 8 years ago

The only time in my country where passing on the right is illegal is if you drive up on the sidewalk or off the road to do it.
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+1 15. thundersnow commented 8 years ago

Yeah you guys are right #12, #13 and #14....I was wrong. You do have to stay on the right though, because I'm sure I have seen hwy signs saying "keep right it's the law" I guess it depends on what state you live in...wished drivers "here" would abide by that..
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+2 16. snotraddict commented 8 years ago

A whole lot of propaganda in this piece. Big thumbs up on the power of the individual vs. the power of the state, which was by design from the beginning as well as "you have to work to earn it", however Americans in general are very generous in helping others. That will change as our taxes are given away to the lazy and less on infrastructure it seems these days, folks will respond by giving less, I know I have.
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-1 17. thundersnow commented 8 years ago

Taxes given away to the lazy is a generalization and usually expressed by those who are doing well economically and health wise, but that can change on a moments notice and one never knows if it's not going to oneself in a situation, requiring help from taxes that were contributed by others and oneself. Down-votes welcome!
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+2 18. snotraddict commented 8 years ago

#17 I prefer the original helping hand whereby it was given freely (not stolen) and often with strings attached. For example- here's some money for this purpose and if you do x and y, I'll help you some more, making the taker accountable to improve themselves. Both parties benefit from this, the giver who enjoyes helping and making a difference, and the taker who hopefully works their way out of the situation they're in. The current entitlement environment is bad for both sides, not to mention the skimming, ahem gouging, the government takes to spread my money around. One way the benefactor gets 100% and honor, the other they get pennies on the dollar and and both the administrator and the taker have attitudes toward the "giver".
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-1 19. GhostInShell commented 8 years ago

All i can say for at least half of that is... LoL :D