American things foreigners find amusing

by | Jan 17, 2020 | Desi Life | 12 comments

If you’re an American and this title raised your curiosity, reading this blog will give you insight on what rest of the world feels when they visit the US as tourists. If you’re someone who’s not familiar with the American ways, reading this blog will truly amuse you. And if you’re not an American but live in the US, this blog will be the most relatable for you!

Gaps between doors in restrooms

I can only speak for the ladies bathrooms for this one but I’m not even exaggerating how evident the gap for the public bathroom doors are. If you’re looking for your friend, take a quick peek and you’d ind her. I’ve been told that the doors were designed this way in airports and pubs as a precautionary measure to avoid indecent behavior in public places and also to curb crimes. So I’ve been told..

Obsession with Starbucks and coffee shops

$1,100 are spent by an average American per year on Starbucks coffee, per FoxNews report ( You’ll always see a line of cars at the Drive-thrus or even inside Starbucks. It’s like a morning drug, something you can’t do without. A Desi would rather make a strong a cup of Bru or Nescafe coffee at home and fill their tumbler for work. I actually like going to Starbucks once in a while just because it tastes so good and I can’t make coffee like that at home. But my Desi-ness doesn’t let me spend thousands of dollars on coffee which I could easily invest in something substantial like traveling ?

Z is zee and zero is o

It’s not that Americans won’t understand if you say ‘Zed’ or ‘zero’. But they sure would know you’re not from here. Europeans and Asians may particularly find it odd since the British English (Real English) does not dictate this rule (see what I did there ?) And you know how I learnt I’m making a boo-boo? Talking on the phone with customer service folks ?

American things foreigners find amusing

Flags everywhere

Barring a few places in California, you’ll see the American flag almost everywhere. I’m not talking about the government offices. I’m talking about flags outside people’s houses, inside the houses, outside laundromats and restaurants, in-stores, on billboards, on cups and tees and undies and everything you can imagine. Whereas in Asian countries like India, there are flag laws. “The national flag of India should not be used as a festoon or a decoration, or allowed to touch the ground. It is not to be used as an advertisement, garment or wrap of any sort”, states the Flag code of India.

Red solo cups

If you’ve ever wondered why every party has this red cup, it’s the most respectable choice of party cups for Americans. Solo is the company that manufactures the most sold disposable cups. From beer pong to frat parties to kids birthday parties to housewarming parties – people of all ages use them for ease, convenience and disposability. As an outsider, I found it intriguing that the entire nation is unanimous with their go-to choice for party cups.

things amusing in America

Wearing pajamas in public

Whether we’re dropping by the post office or shopping for groceries, Americans are surprisingly comfortable wearing clothes typically reserved for in-home use – out in public. It’s not that they’re lazy, per se; it’s just that they like to be comfy—and despite the weird looks they get from tourists, being cozy simply trumps looking put together. This dress code of dressing down doesn’t particularly get Europeans and Asians nod.

American things foreigners feel amusing

Handing out credit cards

Americans are unusually casual about handing out their credit cards in a way that tends to freak foreigners out. In restaurants in many other countries, your server runs your credit card through a machine in front of you. Or you’re called to the cash register to swipe your card. But in the U.S., people are happy to just toss their card in a folder with the bill and let the server take it away. Evidently, they’re the trusting sort.

talkative waiters in America

Over attentive, talkative waiters

If you’ve been annoyed by the number of times waiters ask you ‘Can I get you something?”, “How’s everything”, “Are you doing ok?” – clearly you’ve not lived in the US for long. The waiters in America are highly courteous and want to make sure you’re well attended and taken care of. This also explains why Americans leave a good tip for their service. On the flipside, if you’re a tourist or new to America you might find this a lil too much. Constantly being checked on, is not very polite in many countries as you may be invading personal space.

long-distance driving in America

Driving long-distance and calling it “Road trip”

Roads are one of America’s most preferred transport route. 2019 stats reveal – 100 million Americans take family vacations and mostly prefer to take road trips. Long drives that crosses states to reach the desired location is called a road trip. Imagine packing your stuff for vacation and driving for hours together taking stops in between. Most Europeans and Asians find this gruesome since they are used to train travel or luxury buses and avoid driving long distances. But the Americans have travelled throughout in their car!

What is the weirdest American thing that brings back memories for you? You know I’m gona add it to the list 😉