Before you read this, I’m stating my experiences so far. I’m nearly noticing the differences from the cultures in Australia and America. If you have had another experience, that’s great. If you’re American, I’m not trying to offend, I’m simply starting the differences.
Ok, now that that’s out of the way, let me get started.
As I’m here in America, I’m noticing the difference in greetings. In australia we say “hello” , “hi”. In America I’m getting “heeelllllooooo” “good evening ma’am” “hi ya”
I’m dragging an oxygen machine around on a trolley behind me – in australia if it’s in the way of somebody or I accidentally bump into someone I say sorry – I normally get “no worries”, “that’s ok”, “she’ll be right” or a “all good, have a great day” I even get the door held open for me with a massive smile.
Here in America, same scenario, I say sorry and I get “mmhhmm” and “ok” ones a grunt and ones a quick ok.
No eye contact and “some” door holders for me… Not many.
When I go to the movies in australia, I purchase my ticket at the ticket window (marked tickets) and then go through the gate to the “candy bar” where you have signs with prices stating the “combos” (popcorn and drink deals)
Last Night I went to the cinema in Vegas and I purchased my tickets and then when I asked for combos, the lady looked confused.
She processed with tickets and then asked if I wanted any “concessions” in Sydney concessions means discounts, here it means food at the candy bar.
I went to the car rental place to swap the car – the one that was supplied first was not working well. We called before we went down and they said go to returns and they will sort it out from there. When we arrived, to returns, we explained the situation that we were car swapping to 3 people outside, they all pointed us to the office.
We get to the office and the this is how it went down..
Me: “hi, the car we have isn’t working well and we need to swap it”
Lady: “you’ll need to speak to someone outside with a machine”
Me: “I did, he told me to come inside”
Lady: “ma’am, you need to speak to someone outside with a machine”
Me: ” I did and all 3 people outside instructed me to come here and speak”
Lady: “you see, I don’t do conversation. This window is not for conversation. I look at your paperwork and give you another car, I don’t do conversation”…. “Mmhhmm, ok”
Me: (in my head I’m thinking wtf?! If I pulled a stunt like that in australia is get a warning from my boss) “ok, so what do you suggest I do?”
Lady: “go outside and look for the man that has the computer”
Me: can you please call him to the office because there was no man with a computer”
Lady: “I don’t go outside, I can’t call him. This window is not for conversation”
Now, this went on and on until she finally got off her chair and helped a find the man with the computer – who she couldn’t find herself and then the paperwork got processed.
Food Courts in Australia – the employees normally just stand there, you might get a smile while they wait until you begin walking to their shop, then they greet you with a “hello” or a “hi”
When I went to the food court at the outlet centre the staff/employees were screaming “heeellloooooo” when I was not even near their shop! Wtf?!
One lady was screaming so loud “heeeelllllooooo there” I politely responded with “hi” instead of the “keep it down stupid” that was in my head. It wasn’t polite the way she was greeting me, it was rude and aggressive. It’s like they make you feel obligated to go to their shop because they have given you the long and loud helloooooooo that you didn’t ask for.
When I said hi, she began bitching to her friends about how rude my “hi” was. Really?!
Shopping for clothes, America wins with service on this one.
The staff all give you their name when they help you and when you get to the counter to pay they ask who helped you. In Australia…. Most staff don’t wear their badges and couldn’t give a crap if you found what you were looking for at all.
In America you get a shopper walk with you and help you find everything you need. In Australia you’d only get that service in a fancy high priced store.
Ordering food, you really need to know the differences.
American vs Australian
Cilantro – coriander
Ketchup- tomato sauce
Crisps – a packet of potato chips
Fries – hot chips
peppers – capsicum
Soda – soft drink
Lemonade – lemon drink like solo
Sprite – lemonade
Q tip – ear bud
Kleenex – a tissue
Hot cakes – pancakes
To go- take away
Sit in- eat in
shopping cart – trolley
The list goes on, with the differences .
I hope you enjoyed reading, it’s interesting to see the differences between parts of the world. I haven’t seen the whole of America, so maybe this is just California and Nevada.
Let me know if there are any word differences from Australia to America that I can add.