5 Things Different in the US than in France


Ask any European, “Would you like to live or travel in the US?”  More than 80% will say YES! The United States remains very powerful for foreigners and especially Europeans. Oh sorry, I didn’t introduce myself… I am Etienne. I am 25 and I was living in the US for 18 months. I remember the day, back in July 2014, when I heard I would be living and working in the US.  I was so excited, like a kid on Christmas morning! So I am gonna give you 5 things that are very different in the US than in Europe.


As a Frenchman, and someone who loves food, this is something I pay attention to. I’ll be honest, I missed the European food so much while I was in the US. The good thing is that there is a large variety of choices. I was able to taste more Mexican, Indian, and Korean food than in my country! Thanks to my girlfriend who has been a great teacher, especially for the Asian food.


The way to say “Hello” is different. So in France, there are thousands of ways to say hello to someone, depending on if he is a friend, a family member or a coworker. What I noticed is that at work, people give a global hello or bye and I really liked it. It makes the relationships much easier and avoids any social barrier between each other.


The state of mind of people is also different. I’m not gonna teach you something but you may know the French are negative in general. According to different surveys, more than 60% of French under 20 think their life will be harder than their parent’s life. I don’t know exactly the figures in the US but I noticed a more positive state of mind among my friends and my coworkers there. People complain less and move on easier. I like that!

ADMInistrative things

Another element is the administrative regulations. Oh god! When I got back to France, I realized how messy and crazy the French system is! Just trying to open a bank account can take more than a week and if you lose some information about your social security information it’s gonna take a few months. I just didn’t have the motivation to start the procedures again when I got back. When I setup myself in the US, I was able to get everything done in just 10 days: a social security number, a bank account and the following day I was ready to find an apartment and a car! You can’t imagine that in France!

All these experiences are part of travelers lives and I can’t wait to discover more places around the world!


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