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Americans have unique traits that make them distinctively American. 

From being overly optimistic to working a long schedule, here are some American traits most of the world watches in disbelief.

Long Work Hours

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The typical “9–5,” as they call it, doesn’t always apply to Americans. It’s not uncommon for full-time workers to work more than 50 hours. 

Work–life balance is an issue more companies are becoming aware of, but this is still an ongoing problem.

Veteran Discounts

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One user recalls telling multiple customers that being an American veteran doesn’t qualify them for a discount in Australia. 

Although their service is appreciated, discounts only apply in some places.

Paying at Restaurants

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When eating at American restaurants, the waiter commonly takes your credit card to pay the bill. 

However, in other parts of the world, the servers bring the payment machine directly to the customers.

Gas Pumps

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In the United States, there are many differences in paying for gas. For example, some states on the East Coast have someone pump your gas, while in others, you pump your own gas. 

However, what’s unique about the United States is most people pay before getting gas. In other countries, you pay after you’ve filled your tank.

Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwich

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Most Americans grow up eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. 

What’s not to love? They’re easy to make and taste delicious. 

However, most of the world doesn’t eat them.

Over-the-top Customer Service

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One mantra in the United States is, “The customer is always right.” 

Although customer service is important, not all countries go to this extreme. Often, having a neutral interaction is appropriate.

Medical System

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There are many different medical insurance providers in the United States. 

To make matters more confusing, not all cover the same hospitals.

Garbage Disposal

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Kitchen garbage disposals are common in the United States. 

One family recalls hosting an exchange student from Germany and seeing a confused look on her face as they used theirs.

Free Refills

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Most restaurants in the United States offer free refills on fountain drinks. However, this is different worldwide. 

A user recalls getting blank stares as he tried to refill his soda at a local fast-food restaurant while abroad. 

When one man discovered he had to pay for his drink, he got more blank stares when he tried to use the same cup for his new drink.

Pay Before Eating

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Not all countries require customers to pay for their food before eating takeout like the United States does. 

Some expect customers to pay after they’re done eating. 

Patriotic Day

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One user mentioned knowing a woman who believed all countries around the world lit fireworks to celebrate the Fourth of July. 

The Fourth of July is a patriotic day for the United States to celebrate its independence—and is not typically celebrated elsewhere.

Grape-Flavored Foods

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Grape juice and soda aren’t something people drink worldwide. 

“We have blackcurrant flavour instead, which is the ‘purple’ version in sweets and drinks,” one user said.

16 Creative Responses for The Next Homeless Person Who Asks You for Money

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When approached by a homeless person asking for money, often, we’re clueless about how to react. Here are different ways to engage with empathy, including offering food or assistance, connecting them with resources, and showing genuine interest in their situation.

16 Creative Responses for The Next Homeless Person Who Asks You for Money

11 Creative Ways to Respond to Strangers Asking for Money at Gas Stations

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Being approached by strangers at gas stations can feel awkward, but there are creative and compassionate ways to respond. Here are thoughtful approaches to handling these unexpected interactions that go above and beyond money donations.

11 Creative Ways to Respond to Strangers Asking for Money at Gas Stations

11 Obvious Signs You Grew Up as an Only Child

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Growing up as an only child can have its unique experiences. Here we explore a few obvious signs that indicate you’re an only child. From getting along with adults at an early age to making no announcements, these signs will resonate with many who grew up with no siblings.

11 Obvious Signs You Grew Up as an Only Child

Stay Way From These 4 Creepy Gas Stations at All Costs

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We all have to stop at gas stations at some point, but some gas stations are just too creepy to stop at. Here we highlight a few gas stations to avoid at all costs on your next trip. These gas stations give off unsettling vibes and lack security.

Stay Way From These 4 Creepy Gas Stations at All Costs

14 Big Things That Will Die Out With the Baby Boomers

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As the baby boomer generation enters retirement, many cultural touchstones they grew up with are becoming obsolete. From cell phones to debit cards, here are 10 things that are likely to die out with the baby boomers. Discover which once-iconic items are on their way out and what’s taking their place in modern society.

14 Big Things That Will Die Out With the Baby Boomers



Chris founded FWO, the ultimate destination for those looking to achieve financial independence, explore the world and stay motivated daily.

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