(Answers.com) America is a large country with a blend of cultures and people from around the world. This melting pot has helped shape it into what it is now. What some Americans might not realize is that America is full of quirks and oddities that people from other countries d not understand.

Other Countries Don't Tip

Elsewhere in the world servers are able to make a decent wage that is not dependent upon tips. In many places, a tip is only given in the cases of very good or exceptional service and is certainly not the norm.

Portion Sizes

Americans love their food! From BBQ to Chicago-style deep dish pizza, American food is the best that there is. One thing about American restaurants that baffles people from around the globe is the massive portion sizes.

Free Refills

Soda flows freely in all of its high fructose corn syrup glory! In almost any restaurant in America, soda refills are free. Americans take this for granted, because nearly everywhere else, you have to pay.

Loud People, Friendly People

People in America are generally really loud and unnervingly friendly (although this partially depends on which are of the country you are in). It just isn't normal in many other countries to strike up a conversation with the person sitting next to you on the bus.

Americans Waste a Lot of Water

Toilets in America use a lot of water! Foreigners see this and are baffled at how much water is wasted with every flush; other places in the world are in desperate need of water. In general Americans have a more wasteful attitude towards their resources than other countries with less.

College Sports

College athletes are worshipped and venerated in America. Aren't they just students playing sports? Non-Americans are baffled by this treatment; they aren't professional athletes yet.

Sweet Breads

Bread in America is full of sugar, just like cake. It is unsettling to some foreign guests.


Americans love to put pickles on everything. And why not? They are tasty, salty, vinegary, and go well with everything!

Odd Bathroom

Stalls Public restrooms in America are a risky endeavor. With toilets low to the ground and large gaps in between the walls and door, American public toilets can leave one yearning for just a little more privacy.

Cheese...In A Can?

Cheese isn't supposed to come in a can. Aerosol cheese is puzzling and is an affront to all of the good dairy farmers and cows out there.

Taxes Aren't Built Into the Price

In America, taxes are figured out after all the other purchases have been made. In most other countries, the tax price is already figured into the goods. So if you see something on the shelf priced at 2 euros, that's how much you will pay at the register.


Only in America do people sweeten things so liberally. Whether it be coffee, tea, or strawberries, Americans never miss a chance to add some sugar.

Meal Times

In America, lunch is traditionally at noon, and dinner is around 6:30 in the evening. However, dinner in some European countries won't get served until as late as 9pm.

Lawyer Advertisements

Whether or not their reputation is deserved, lawyers and attorneys in America are very stereotyped. Advertisements on television, on the Internet, and in print media attempt to paint the picture of the assertive lawyer who wants to help.

Colloquial Phrases

America is a huge place, so common phrases and phrase meanings differ from region to region. It isn't difficult to see how non-Americans could be confused by many phrases that you use every day without even thinking about them, such as "How are you?" and "Oh, really?"

Love of the American Flag

It's on t-shirts, hats, cups, mugs--everywhere. You can't turn around without seeing a flag or two, especially around one of the many national holidays. People from other countries find this just a bit much.

The Pledge of Allegiance

Americans are used to saying the pledge all the time, but to people from other countries, seeing a bunch of schoolchildren mindlessly pledging allegiance is a little...well, creepy.


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