40 Good and Bad Cultural Upheavals for Non-Americans in the U.S. Share on This Online Group

The isolation of peoples, different climates and resources, as well as other factors led to the fact that different customs were formed in different places. But with globalization, we can be aware of these differences and prepare for them. However, some things are talked about less because people may not even realize that in other places it may be different, so there is always something that can surprise us.

The country they often like to talk about is the United States. There are so many things they do in different ways that visiting or living in a country can be a culture shock. Redditors discussed this very topic when Unhappy mermaid asked, “Non-Americans from Reddit, what was the biggest culture shock you experienced when you came to the US?” In just a day, more than 30 thousand answers were given, so we have collected the most interesting things, as indicated by the redditors.

More information: Reddit





Couldn’t walk anywhere or use good public transportation. I always had to use Ubers or hitchhiking.

Everything was HUGE as well. Cities, buildings, ordinary houses, food portions. I would say people, but I didn’t see anyone there who was very obese, at least.



There was an insane amount of space just … everywhere. Since the European is accustomed to huddling in every accessible corner, even in the countryside, it was unimaginable how simply the cities stretched out.

ScotchSirin , Virginia state parks Report

Flags everywhereNot exactly a shock, but one thing that really surprised me was the sheer number of flags.

It was as if there was an American flag on almost every building. Here in Belgium, if I see a house with the national flag, I assume that there is some kind of sporting event that I was not aware of.

Conocorif , Bill smith Report

Toilet doorsToilet doors (or lack thereof). The door is missing!

Seriously, you are a wealthy enough country that you don’t need to leave an inch on the sides and a foot and a half up and down.

face , namingjami Report

Treatment of veteransTreatment of veterans. A lot of communication around the respect they deserve. However, many of them are broke, homeless and generally in poor condition.

cohen , Nick Vidal-Hall Report

The importance of the college / university you are applying toThe importance of the college / university you are going to. It seemed to me that the name, you can even call it a brand, of the College is more important than your real skills and knowledge, as well as the quality of your education. So many times people have asked me which college / university I am attending and told me about their college and the college their children attend. Completely different than what I’m used to in Germany where the focus is on your skills and grades rather than the college / university you are attending.

Breath of the Legend69 , karmiclar Report

Everything is hugeEverything is bloody huge. Literally. Road lanes, grocers, sodas. Especially the distance: where I come from, 3 hours drive is enough to cross half the country, in the USA it is just a short trip to see a relative or something like that.

salderosan99 , Ben Shumin Report

Christianity is everywhereChristianity is everywhere. On your money, at school, every Sunday, churches everywhere, on your bail, in the Boy Scouts, poems at the bottom of In & Out milkshakes

Majestic_Bierd , Ben Shumin Report

Friendly road workersI was walking down the street, and in front of me some road workers were doing something. When I approached them, one of them came up to me and very kindly asked me to cross to the other side, stopped traffic so that I could cross, and wished me a good day as I walked.

In my country, they would probably scold me for not crossing the road, and I would tell them to go to hell for not signaling properly when I walked in the middle of the street, and I could be run over car.

madkeepz , Daniel Lobo Report

a lot of advertisingAdvertising between the credits of the show and the show itself. You have a lot of ads.

VodkaMargarine , Marcus Report

TipsTips. And not just a tip, but a tip so big that everything I bought (food, for example) is now at a completely higher price point.

limitation of the wrist , Kai Hendry Report

BillboardsBillboards. They are everywhere. You can drive around the UK for hours without meeting a single one. In Florida, I saw one every few minutes.

TV commercial, motherfucker, just play the show, it hurts.

Traffic jams, like people drive in the USA, it’s so easy to get stuck in traffic, it’s everywhere. F ** KER JUST RIDE IT HURTS ADD AF ** KING ROUND FIGHT

However, 7/11 are magical places.

IAmTheGlaced , Zen Skyllicorn Report

Various kinds of flavors for drinksVarious types of beverage flavors. I was overwhelmed by the sheer number of options.

Just guys so you know, I enjoyed having multiple options until I came to the US, I had no idea that I liked blue raspberry flavored soda and I found that I like to mix different types of fountain sodas and make a cocktail soda from time to time. …

Also, I love that you guys have a ton of flavors for alcohol. I liked a lot of them, but to be honest, I didn’t like the whipped cream flavored things.

how to know– , daniel_blue Report

No sidewalksThere are no sidewalks, not everywhere, but outside of large cities, you often literally cannot move safely between places.

rebellious pacifist , TheMuuj Report

Return policyMy wife is from the Philippines and has also worked in Singapore for over 10 years. When she came here, there were many surprises in store for her, but the biggest of them was the opportunity to return the purchased items. She had never been able to do this before.

CitySuper5546 , gypsy tights Report

Unlimited sodaWhen we first arrived, I walked over to the soda machine. We never had them and I think I drank 10-15 shots of cocaine before my parents started yelling at me. UNLIMITED SODA YOU JOKE ME WTF.

Lord_Disagree , Mike Mozart Report

People pay for their foodPeople pay for their food. As someone who comes from China, where everyone is fighting for the expense with no intention of paying, this is very refreshing.

ListenOrElse_ , Dale cruise Report

Without worrying about burglars, scammers, how little is known about life outside the US and aggressive advertising1. No walls around houses or bars by the windows.

2. Homeowners’ association, I do not understand why neighbors can influence how long the grass should be or what color I can / cannot paint the house.

3. People walk freely with phones in their hands and are not afraid of being robbed.

4. Not all, but very many know little about anything outside the United States.

5. How diligently they advertise everything and everyone.

Nature_VO , Michaela Perekas Report

Drive through the ATMDrive through the ATM. Very friendly people. How fat many Americans were. Fountains in every public place. Heating system in every house. I was amazed at so many trees along the highway. Still me

Final pair-3729 , Sean Hayford Oliri Report

How unphysical are AmericansWhat non-physical Americans. I am Hispanic and every time I meet someone new it is considered polite to hug and kiss them on the cheek as a greeting. Blaming with professionals is not suitable, but, for example, if I was introduced to a friend of a friend, I would hug and kiss very easily, I was amazed that Americans mostly make a hesitant wave or handshake.

Rainbow_elmo24 , Henry Burroughs Report

Signs urging not to carry weapons insideA sign at the front door of the restaurant, reminding visitors not to carry firearms inside, but leave them in the car.

for anyone who asks, I saw this in Phoenix, Arizona.

RushUnits , Daniel Lobo Report

That you cannot drink beer during lunch in many places.

I understand that these are family-friendly destinations, but where is my beer? Here you can get it in almost any restaurant from 11 am.

Richards182 Report

The power of some toilet flushesThe power of some toilet flushes shook me, one was so loud that my ears even hurt. Then I remembered the poop knife and thought it must be necessary.

subrhythm , Sophie Report

Homeless people in the US are very aggressiveHomeless people in the United States are very aggressive. I am from Africa and am used to beggars and squatters, but the ones I encountered in California were so loud, obnoxious and aggressive.

KyleLucasZA , Elvert Barnes Report

Work was underway on the highway, and about every kilometer there was a dude with a sign telling us how long the traffic jam was. Or was it the remaining building area in miles? I don’t remember the truth.

The thing is … Why were the dudes there? In my country, we just hang these signs on iron sticks, lol.

Wundawuzi Report

People were coming back from races and they were soberThe first was on the train from the airport to New York.

Well-dressed people came back from the races, sober. At home, it would be a heavily drunk party train.

Oh, and then the opportunity to buy 500 paracetomol at once in a bank. Wtf.

Incantanto , Martin Quatre Report

It was strange to see alcohol sold at regular grocery stores. Where I live, it is only sold in liquor stores.

UnsocialAsset Report

Much, but the biggest one was how difficult it was to turn left at the intersection. I rented a car because I could drive my B1 and I really enjoyed driving there, but this rule was confusing to me.

pankichand Report

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