4 Ways To Spot an American Abroad

If you’re asking yourself the question, “What is my house worth?” With an idea of putting it on the market, heading out of the country and traveling abroad, you’re certainly not the only one. Some of the most recent statistics reveal that from 1993 to 2012, the percentage of all retirees traveling abroad rose to 13 percent, an increase of 3.3 percent. Of course, it’s not just retirees who want to immerse themselves in new cultures and perhaps even spend time living like the locals. It’s something that’s becoming increasingly popular among nearly all age groups.

The problem is, most Americans can easily be spotted among the crowd, with unique habits that don’t just include wearing fanny packs. If you really want to know how to blend in, here’s how foreigners can easily spot Americans abroad, providing some insider insight so that you can stay on the down low.

You Expect Your Normal to be Their Normal

If you’re traveling to Ireland and say something like “What’s that in normal degrees,” referring to Fahrenheit, that’s a dead giveaway. “Normal” isn’t Fahrenheit, though it may be to you. Nearly all the world’s countries use Celsius. There are only five that don’t, and that includes the U.S., Belize, Cayman Islands, Bahamas and Palau.

When you’re abroad, always remember that you aren’t in America anymore, and what’s normal there often isn’t just about everywhere else.

You Expect Everyone to Speak English in Non-Speaking Countries

Many Americans are under the impression that English is the world’s No. 1 most spoken language, and everywhere they go they’ll be able to communicate in that language. The reality is that Chinese is the most commonly spoken language on the planet, followed by Spanish. Before you travel to a particular destination where the local language isn’t English, try to learn at least a few basic phrases and download a translation app. Don’t think that speaking slower and louder to someone who doesn’t understand you is going to help.

You Compare Everything to Something Back Home

If you’re in a foreign country, appreciate its uniqueness instead of trying to compare everything to what it’s like back home. Something heard often around the Bed and Breakfast table among American visitors, “Well, we don’t do it like this back home…”

That’s because you aren’t home – you’ve traveled most likely to experience a different country and its unique culture. Appreciate it for what it is.

You’re So Confused by the Money You’re Asking to be Shortchanged

Many Americans are so baffled by the currency of different nations that when paying for something they pull everything they have out of their wallet asking the cashier to figure it out. Just imagine doing that to the clerk at the 7-Eleven back home. Before you visit, take time to understand the local currency, what it looks like, the approximate exchange rate and so on. Soon after you arrive, examine those coins and bills so that you’re comfortable with them and can avoid putting yourself and the cashier in a rather awkward situation.

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