Unless you hail from a geographically large country such as Canada or Australia, distances here will be an adjustment. Each year we get Europeans who arrive in our country and make travel plans without checking first, and who seriously expect to drive from Chicago to The Grand Canyon in one day with enough time to see both places. The entire UK is smaller than Colorado. Texas is bigger than France. Yellowstone National Park has more than three times the land area of Luxembourg. Also, outside of major metropolitan areas there are large stretches where our country is mostly uninhabited. Our land has much beautiful scenery; if you rent a vehicle to enjoy that then stay on the paved roads. One of the most dangerous things to do in this country is to detour for sightseeing, because if you have vehicle trouble on a dirt road it may be weeks before anyone else uses that road. Then if your phone doesn't have reception or loses power, you're in a survival situation. People do muddle into that predicament; don't let that be you.


That second paragraph is something that has never occurred to me before. It's a scary idea ngl. In my country, I think the worst case scenario in terms of isolation would be walking for a day to get to the main road, and that's assuming you've climbed a mountain or something. If you're on a road, it'll be a few hours to follow it back to the main road, then wait for a car to pass by in an hour or so. The idea that you could end up somewhere so isolated that it'll be weeks before you're found is very scary.


Very much. Some dirt roads are only used seasonally for logging so it's feasible to be stuck alone on those places. Other places the climate poses more immediate problems. A few examples of dirt road stranding problems (warning; some tragic): [Last month, West Virginia](https://www.fox29.com/news/west-virginia-coal-miners-rescue-couple-stranded-broken-down-electric-car) [Two months ago, Mojave desert](https://www.kron4.com/news/musician-larry-petree-and-wife-stranded-on-desert-dirt-road-found-dead-in-bizarre-tragedy/) [Last April, California](https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2022/apr/25/woman-rescued-stranded-forest-yogurt-and-snow)


Can confirm, this is happened to me. I was hiking in Desolation wilderness in California, lost the trail and had to survive for a day by myself until I finally found a trail that took me back to where I could find another hiker. Thankfully I had some wilderness survival training. It’s no joke…


I drove through Oregon once and went 5 hours without service and saw one gas station


The Death Valley Germans come to mind...


And the French girls whose parents died in a slot canyon hike (Utah I believe)or the French boy who is the sole survivor of his family hike in White Sands, NM.


Oh god I read about those. Imagine leaving your car because you heard there was a military base nearby and you needed help, only to get lost because American desert military bases use the landscape instead of guards for security…


My In laws had an exchange student. He got irritated they wouldn't drive him to NYC....... We live in Orlando.


European people have very specific expectations regarding distances, I agree. I remember once I saw a woman explaining how she didn't visit her parents very much because they lived far away and that was *40min away by car*. I'm not from the US, but I'm also in a continental country, and you can't go over 3 neighborhoods in my city in 40 minutes.


Some Costco’s are larger than Manchester


I only live one state over and it would take 12 hours without stopping to get to the Grand Canyon.


HE he he That is it. My cousins was going to USA and we checked something on a map, thinking "oh I'm gonna be close to it". Then we go to Google Maps and see it is 20 hours one way :)


And then those Europeans make fun of us for not officially using the metric system when they don’t bother to use it to gage just how big our country is


Or the ones who don’t understand why most of us only speak one language.


I wouldn't flex with that too much.


Don’t order the large.


The large is for when you don’t feel like cooking tomorrow morning


From England Went to New York Family were talking Homeless man overhears us calls us filthy tea drinkers 10/10 would go again


Well to be fair, it is new york


What about the biscuits. Should have educated that arsehole.


From Ireland. Was a bit unsure which train I needed to catch in New York so asked two guys who were waiting. Asked me where I was from and when I said Ireland they said 'Oh cool, we were gonna to beat the shit out of you but our grandmother was from County Slip.' County 'Slip,' doesn't exist and they were dead serious. Also I found American guys seem to get super aggressive when drinking.


If you plan on drinking alcohol at a restaurant/bar bring a picture ID with you. Many American establishments will ask for it even if you look well over 21.


Same in the UK. We have the ask 25 thing. Basically if you look under 25 you should have ID


It’s 35 here in America lol


40 in a lot of places


American TV and American life are two separate universes; and neither is connected with the other.


So many average working people on TV live in large houses. Or by themselves in a NYC or Miami apartment. That shit is *so* not real.


Friends from Ireland were astonished by the mailbox. See, I put in a letter, and lift this little flag up, and that lets the mail carrier know that I have a letter to mail. After he picks it up, he puts the little flag down, and I know he's been there. "Feckin' brilliant, dat."


And what stops any random person from stealing your mail?


It’s a felony to tamper with mail, and usually if it’s just sitting in a mailbox it’s probably not worth stealing. But I don’t see people doing this in the city anymore, anything that I could think to put in my mailbox can be sent from my phone.


"My dearest Abigail, It has been many weeks now since I have had the pleasure of gazing into your beautiful eyes. Oh, how I long for your company on those fresh spring mornings when we would picnic in the meadow. I am barely asleep each night when my mind dreams instantly of your ample posterior, which is fulsome in shape and size, and a delight to behold. Truly your body is a house made from only the finest of bricks..."


So u don't have to go to a post office 😧


I don't know...I once saw a documentary about Baltimore called "The Wire".


Don't pet the fluffy cows


AKA Buffalo/American Bison. They look friendly but can be mean SOBs


i think the best suggestion is if its bigger than you or has more or less legs than you - dont pet it lol.


Don’t pet: a dog 🚫 Do pet: a baboon 👍 I’m learning so much!!


If you’re in Alaska, don’t approach the Musk Ox aka the Northern fluffy cows.


Yes, everyone wants to see the tourist spots but see what local festivals are happening in the towns and cities you are visiting. It's a great way to get a taste of what actual American life is. Hit up a State fair. Check out a parade. Try a food truck festival. Go to a convention. Go to a concert while you here also. See how an American crowd is different from one back home. Eat locally, eat locally, eat locally. Even a cornershop sandwich could be miles better than any fast food chain. Don't know where to go? Check out if the city you are visiting has a subreddit here and ask locals where is a good place to eat. Americans love to share their favorite spots to eat.


>Check out if the city you are visiting has a subreddit here and ask locals where is a good place to eat. Americans love to share their favorite spots to eat. fun travel pointer for both americans and non americans. Ive learned over the years never ask hotel staff where to eat lol. sorry but every suggestion has just been close shit you can see from the parkinglot or places that are meh. ASk gas station attendants is my go to - or people who run specialty mom n pop stores (like be in a hunting/fishing store and ask that guy where the best fish fry or burger is - your gonna get a killer place lol.) Also never ask "wheres a good place to eat" - they will just think of an all around general place thats ok. Have a food in mind and phrase it in a way like "Hey im not from around here but where do you go for a great burger?" "Or who has the best fish fry around here?" or "best mexican food" or "best barbecue" or whatnot. THis gets people thinking of specific places and will suggest awesome places to go - be sure to let them know distance isnt important. Try it on yourself - think of a local reasturaunt then think of the best place around you for a burger or pizza or whatnot. Likely its not the same place lol.


Everything is huge in America


Especially hospital bills


Not everything


It’s definitely average. Go ask your mom


Sample some local diner food. It's the absolute best representation of "american food"/regional food and the culture of the local area. The people at those places are almost always the nicest people you'll ever meet and you're guaranteed not to leave hungry.


always get the pie ESPECIALLY if its slowly rotating in a jewel case by the entrance


It's bigger than you think..in the south and west people chit chat it's considered rude not to engage..in the northeast if you try and chit chat people will assume your trying to scam them and act rude..




The very first American one meets is the immigration officer. You wait in a long line which moves really slow to finally get up there. I first flew into the US in 2003. In the past 15 years I have never heard them say Welcome, or even Hello. No smiles. No cheer.


Mine wished me a pleasant trip with a smile :)


Driving into/out of Canada is always interesting. Candian border guards are almost always friendly (and always at least polite) but US border guards invariably act like they just saw me stab someone and now they're going to find evidence in my car


Any other sentiment is just rude


Sorry I'd have cleaned up if I knew you were coming.


Don't say the N word. Not as a "joke", not to see if people get a reaction out of a word that doesn't carry the same context back home, not ever. No matter how much you might hear it in American movies or TV shows, just don't do it. Another comment here says American TV and American life are two separate universes. This is one example of that.


Good tip, in all other countries everyone is throwing around the N word all the time with no consequence.


Haha right? This is legit advice, but kinda out of left field




Actually true. A lot of Europeans use it and should be warned you won’t evade repercussions if you are overheard saying this word in the us


Plan where you want to go and what you want to see in advance, using real maps. Don't judge cities or rural areas by television. There aren't that many that live up to the stereotyping. Many Americans will smile at you and many will ask you how you're doing. They really don't want to know, it's just a weird pleasantry here. Get to any national park you can, they're all gorgeous. Avoid the fast food joints if you like actual food. Look for local festivals, look for non chain restaurants. All the people where you are to recommend places. Mostly we aren't assholes and if I run into you, I'll be asking about your country cause there are so many I want to visit


The US is bigger than you thank you can not take a road trip from NYC to LA if you're on weeklong vacation you will not have fun if you're lucky its 41 hr one way. I have so many people say that when I lived in NYC "We are staying for 4 days then we want to see Hollywood we are going to rent a car and leave in the morning and come back by Saturday."


It always trips me up how small Eurpeans think the US is. My friend from the UK was surprised when I told him it takes me a 3 hour drive one way to get to the next state. Apparently you can get from London to the north of the UK in about that time. Everything is waaaaay more spread out here, it makes sense how they can intuitively get confused.


Not quite *that* small! I'm about 6 hours north of London and have another 7 to go north. Though most folk are crammed within about 3 hours of London for sure. Best to think of the US like a holiday to the continent in the car.


Yeah I'm not even at the very north of scotland and it takes me 12 hours to drive to London. I mean we're a small country but we're not that small!


Texarkana to Chicago is roughly the same drive as Texarkana to El Paso. Texas is massive.


It takes me 7 hours to get to another state




Yep. Less to get to Mexico, but that's a hefty drive too


Florida here. Same.


Don’t believe anything you see on the News the vast majority of of Americans are good people and they will treat you right


Don't talk about Politics. If the person you are talking to brings up Politics, change the Subject


Have fun, eat some good food!


Go to a shooting range and rent some guns. Enjoy your day.


some states let you rent full autos - DO IT.


We’re not all fat


Region dependent


The biggest thing is the US is huge. Like mind bendingly enormous. Unless you're from Brazil or China or some similarly massive country, you are not prepared for the distances involved. We're not really one country. We're a series of countries with an overarching government on top. Laws and customs can vary widely from state to state, and even from city to city. Do your research and figure out what region you're going to be in, and plan accordingly. We're not nearly as dangerously unhinged as it looks in the mainstream media. Don't get me wrong, we're still somewhat unhinged, just not the way it's portrayed in the news. Certain words can get you into serious trouble here. The R word that pertains to someone with physical or mental developmental delays, the C word that refers to female genitalia, and The N word that refers to persons of apparent African ancestry are universal no-no's. The first one will get you yelled at and expelled from places, the second can get you assaulted, and the third can get you killed. Politics, religion, race, and sexuality are not topics for casual conversation, and if it is something you really want to engage in, should only be done with a great deal of tact and delicacy, with people to whom you are well aquatinted. Racism exists in varying degrees and flavors depending on the region. Again, know where you're going and plan accordingly. Reliable public transit is only available in major metropolitan areas. New York, San Francisco, Seattle all have reliable, if somewhat disgusting at times, regional public transport options. Slightly smaller metros may have an in city bus line, and accessible taxi services. Most places have no public transit options, so expect to have to drive a rental car if you aren't in one of those areas. Prices for items, with few exceptions, are given at pre-tax amounts, due to advertising restrictions. Sales taxes are imposed at the city, county, and state levels, but not at the federal level, so the final cost of an item will vary depending on where it is purchased. Different goods and services may or may not be taxed, depending on location. Gasoline is a notable exception to this, as the price shown is always the price paid. That's all I can think of as far as general information goes.


I would go as far to say even words like hick or redneck can get you into trouble if you say it in the right areas


That's true to an extent, though that's more tone dependent than word dependent, and thus falls into the category of common insults, as those words can be used playfully, where the ones I mentioned cannot. As an example, some of the Australian people I know use the C word the way people in the US might use the word dick or asshole. That's not going to go well here.


Ah shit cunt's I can't ever go to America ay, motherfucker I won't survive the night.


Wow, you guys actually kill people for *words*? Horrendous words btw, but still.


In the wrong place, at the wrong time, in front of the wrong people, it can happen. That's a worst case scenario I grant you, but the chance of it is not zero. I would say about a 1% chance of death, 9% chance of permanent injury, 40% chance of mild to severe injury, and 50% chance of dirty looks to yelling/ being thrown out of wherever you are.


See the Grand Canyon. It doesn't disappoint.


"oh cool, where ya from?" assuming they just told me they were visiting america for the first time.


America big


Don't leave your phone or belongings unattended in public, the chance might be low (depending on where you are) but they might get stolen. Don't EVER try to bribe police, officials, judges, social workers, ect... you WILL make things worse and be arrested. Most Americans are very friendly and will want to talk to you, even if you are total stangers, this is normal.


WEOCOME!! Edit: I meant to say welcome . . . Now is the opportunity for you to make a joke about the US education system FYI.


Tip your waiter/waitresses 20% The pay system is different in the US and most of their pay is tips.


Calculate the 20% before the sales tax is added.


Additionally, the prices shown are not the price you will pay. Tax is usually not shown and is calculated at checkout.


Thankfully the food is cheaper (than the UK), so it doesn't hurt as much as you'd think.




But also because most of the server's pay isn't calculated in the list price. In many states, servers can be paid significantly under minimum wage as long as tips make up the difference- that's what people mean when they say tips are part of their pay and not just a bonus for doing good.


"Welcome to America"


Look, we know.


visit new mexico. such an underrated state with unique history, culture, geography, food, and architecture that gets overlooked due to looking bad on paper.




Albuquerque New Mexico?


Red River is like in the top 20 small town gems in the US. And there is so much to do there!


Sine yo pitty on the runny kine


Sa da tay!




Chicka beeeey


Pootie tang


It's hot out here too!




What would I say… “Welcome!!!”


Could I have a clarifying question? Is this supposed to be about advice we would give them? Because if it's just literally asking what I'd say to a non American visiting in passing is just "welcome"


I think the same thing they would tell us; have a good time, be polite, and read up on your destination so you dont get caught in the tourist traps.


Waitstaff expects a 20% tip. Service n’est pas compris aux états-unis!


You might want to use r/askanamerican


Not American but lived there for a bit. Whatever the price in the supermarket is, it'll be more when you go to the til. There's tax and shit that isn't included in the display price. Very annoying. People are generally very nice/friendly but often don't know much about anywhere outside the US so you might get some odd questions. In the beginning I thought people were fucking with me but generally they were curious/just didn't know. The food is awesome. Eat everything. Make sure you have decent insurance/travel insurance etc.


"No, you can't take a train from Boston to Los Angeles."


⸮no wɘʜɔ nɒɔ I ƨɈυnlɒw ʇo Ɉɘƨ eϱυʜ ɒ ɘvɒʜ ɘnoγnɒ ƨɘoႧ


Sorry mate, i don't speak Austrian


is this a reference to something? why walnuts?


Know what you're doing if you're going south of the mason-dixon line.


What? Please explain


He’s an idiot.




The south is where most of the brown people live dude.


Oh shut up


Ahhhh ok. Man. That’s disappointing. Always wanted to see Texas but I’m brown.


I’m a Texan, I’m brown and I’m fine. Agreed that rural areas are probably less welcoming but Austin, San Antonio, Houston and Dallas are fine.


I'm brown and I cover all of Texas for work and have never had an issue.


You'd likely be totally fine in the cities. The racism of the rural types is very bold.


That happens in Northern states too.


Actually it’s more prevalent up there. I’ve lived in both extremes and can confirm the racism is much easier to find in the northeast and Midwest. I have no idea why that is but I assume it has to do with how many white people lived, worked or went to school with black people and obviously it’s unavoidable in the south.


Can I come home with you when you leave I don't like this place


Just smuggle me in your luggage


Don’t come here and bad-mouth America to us. We’re well aware that the rest of the world doesn’t like us or the policies in place but it’s a classless move.


So... keep the echo chamber going?


I don’t know where you live, but nobody is saying America is the best country and blindly praising it where I am.


Yeesh, I've met LOADS of Americans who do exactly that.


Oh wow, so.... welcoming 😬


Would you like it if a tourist came to your country and talked poorly of it? I doubt it.


When a tourist talks poorly of my country it's always about Paris, so me and 60 millions other people tend to agree


Silly goose, the question didn't say that the tourist was talking badly or not of your country, that's in your head, apparently this is just your welcome to every tourist. Just.... holy shit 😂


I didn’t say they were. I said that they shouldn’t. If you’re going to troll, troll with some competency.


You are in for a wild ride.


Sales tax is added at the till.


Get out of my way!


Stay away from large franchise stores, eat at actual mom and pops shop, don't just visit the cities, we have beautiful rural areas too. DON'T TALK POLITICS OR YOU'RE NOT GOING TO HAVE A GOOD TIME.


Don’t go to the super touristy places or do the super touristy things. It annoys us just as much as it annoys you. Plus they arent a very good look at what America is.


Don’t just go to the city center . Lots of neighborhoods with amazing restaurants that tourists typically wouldn’t go to. Just search Google maps and look for the places with 1,000+ reviews


Leave your opinions at the door, the America you see on the News and TV is not necessarily the America you will see in person.


I know you’ve heard to be careful and not get lost in certain large cities, but I beg of you to be careful and not to get lost in rural Appalachia for myriad reasons.


I'm sorry people are a bunch of uncultured jerks.


Get out you illegal alien


Obligatory not an American : I would say don’t be surprised if someone is starting a conversation with you like they know you. American people will speak to anyone about the weather or whatever, they love small talk. Go along and finish with a : have a great one Ah, and when someone you pass by ask you how you doing, it’s a form of greeting, they don’t want to know, just say do the head greeting and say hi. Advise from a US neighbour


Come hungry. Leave happy.


Smiling and "how are you" is a greeting not an invitation for conversation. No matter how you are, the awnser to "how are you" is "good" and smile back.


Don't call black people "boy." It's seen as looking down on them, and people will most likely get very offended/angry if you do.


As an addition: some people do call customers at their jobs "hun" or "sweetie". It's considered polite and friendly for some reason.


Austria, huh? # G'DAY MATE!


I think you're talking Australia, but correct me if I'm wrong


We smile a lot


Except Chicago.


If I lived somewhere where the cold hurt my face I wouldn't smile either


Welcome! I know there are a lot of chain restaurants/ fast food places, but please try some independent places. Most locals will be more than happy to recommend some if you don't see any on Google.


I dont know... we have a lot of large meals that taste good, but are absolutely horrible for your health. New York sucks.


Stay away from big blue cities. The District Attorneys in big blue cities are refusing to properly charge and prosecute street level criminals, turning them into post-apocalyptic hell holes.


Welcome to the US, I hope you enjoy it! Anything beyond that depends on the area. I know California (specifically San Diego and Orange County best), Michigan, Ohio, and New Hampshire better than others.


I had a great summer in Michigan, many years ago.


The portion sizes here are huge. As a smaller female, I almost always get 2 meals out of 1 entree (unless super high end). Depending on where we are I sometimes order from the kids menu. Tap water at restaurants is free but bottled obv is not.


New York and Los Angeles, and Miami are cities here but are not representative of this vast Country. If you think you have seen in America but you’ve only gone to one of those three cities, you have not seen America.


Visit our national parks. They’re great, lots to see and experience. Plan ahead.


The stuff about our healthcare system is very true. Make sure you have access to emergency funds, just in case.






Take me home with you please I will be good.


The news makes gun violence seem way more prevalent than then it really is. This is a big country so there is a lot of space between acts of violence. The size of the country makes it hard to understand how spread out violence tends to be.


"restroom" is the word we use instead of washroom or bathroom, generally speaking.


I definitely say bathroom


And few Americans know what a WC is. Don't ask for the WC.


Bathroom generally means the one at home vs restroom being the one in public, but no one would be confused if you used either in either situation


Turn away run and never look back


It's probably best to think of the US as between like... 3 and 9 separate nations- each with distinctly different cultures, politics, geographies, etc.


Try the ranch. I’m serious, y’all apparently don’t know what’s up


MC. Donalds is always an option


Why do you only have one chin???


Try to speak American


Use hand sanitizer often. The eels are never fresh no matter which coast you're on and what the wait staff tells you. Street criminals are attracted to tourists wearing Chicago bears apparel.




Run Forest Run




Right after they land: Welcome to the best country in the world!


If your from Mexico leave if your from Asia stay .


Don’t just don’t you don’t wanna be here we have cool stuff but a lot of Americans are really sensitive and entitled and annoying i love my country I hate the people


Don't talk to the cops. Most of them are tyrants who just want to rack up money for the state or feds. You don't have to do anything they ask you to do without a good reason.


On the other hand, Go ahead and be rude to cops and see if you get a warning or a ticket.


I would greet them with a traditional American greeting, by saying, "Howdy!"


Some of us do have minds of our own. Not everyone here is a woke/cancel culture/unsympathetic human being. If we disagree with certain aspects of society, it doesn’t mean we are racist or evil. Bad thing is, labels move in on you when you’re just being honest and give an opinion. Thing is, we are a good country with basically decent people.


Don’t be demeaning. Europeans especially. Not all Americans are dumb. Most of us are, but not all.


Don't ✌️