Written by Boss Fl,
Immigration Consultant in Florida.
America is a great nation. We all at times so much admire this big land of opportunity and Posh. There are some very easy means of getting yourself to USA, and if that’s your dream, Soon you might be on a Stop over in Heathrow, headed for the States. But there are a few things I would like you to Know before we move to the next Steps of How to Get to America, How to get a job, things to do and places to live.
Here are just a few things I wish I had known before I came to the States.
The weird love of non‐perishable foods ‐‐ like mac & cheese, Sriracha, and peanut butter.
Found in most American homes, this trio has to be survival food, right? Please tell me these are three of the things Americans stocked in Cold War bomb shelters (along with Spam) in the event the Soviets attacked. This is the only reasonable explanation for mac & cheese making the cut. The product looks and tastes orange. How?
Flu season is legit.
So, influenza is no joke. In fact, people should go back to calling it that, because all of the Walgreens and CVS promos about immunization are downplaying how bad getting the flu can actually be ‐‐ it can knock you out. This is not an overstatement. Some of my friends and I grew up in various African countries and contracted malaria periodically ‐‐ many of us maintain that getting the American flu was on par or even worse! Read that again, worse. Than. Malaria. Aches, cough, chills, sweats, fever, fatigue, dizziness ‐‐ sound familiar?
You have to pay to be taken away in an ambulance.
This lesson was, unsurprisingly, learned during flu season. This is one of those “The More You Know” tidbits that Americans should be sharing with everyone they know. With rides to the emergency room ranging from $400 to $1,800 a pop depending on your insurance provider and where you live, this is key information. Medics also have the right to request insurance information or intended form of payment BEFORE taking you anywhere, so try to stay conscious, folks!
You don’t really need to carry cash. Ever.
Don’t feel too special, you’re not a president or a royal, you just have the option to swipe your credit/debit card everywhere from a taxi to a food truck to a street fair — yeah, even vendors selling bottle-cap belt buckles have mobile card readers.
You basically always have to tip
Restaurants, bars, cabs, hairdressers, nail salons ‐‐ tipping between 10 and 25% is customary and it can add up. You’re also kindly given the option to tip pretty much everywhere else a service is provided.
There are more TV shows/channels than anyone could imagine.
Yes, the entertainment industry is massive, but how are there so many forms of televised entertainment? And who is watching it all? Just look at American Hoggers ‐‐ no, not a three‐part documentary on the Discovery Channel or National Geographic, as one might think, but rather a reality show that follows a family whose mission is to control the feral hog population of Texas by hunting them. That series lasted FOUR SEASONS!!!
You can (and will) be prompted to add bacon and/or avocado to everything
This is not a complaint. This also means that every two to three months, a slew of articles will come out predicting an upcoming avocado shortage in America and then a bunch will state the opposite.
Some holidays are, umm, optional?
It seems employers (and schools) can choose whether or not federal holidays like Martin Luther King Jr. Day, Presidents’ Day, Veterans Day, and Columbus Day mean time off. While Christmas and New Year’s Day are also usually given to students and employees, other “religiously affiliated” holidays like Good Friday, Easter Sunday, Rosh Hashanah, Yom Kippur, Eid al‐Adha, and Eid al‐Fitr are accorded on more of a case-by-case basis. What’s up with that?
The East Coast/West Coast rivalry? It’s kind of real.
It’s not Tupac and Notorious B.I.G-gunned‐down‐in‐the‐street real anymore, but verbal shots are fired rather quickly by New Yorkers and Californians, for example, when asked “Which coast is better?” The criteria and categories are largely food‐ and “vibe‐” based, ranging from “bagels versus Mexican food” and “Shake Shack versus In‐N‐Out” to “fast pace versus, well, not‐so‐fast pace.”
How easily medication is prescribed.
On any given day, and depending on the level of stress or inattention you’re projecting, an American friend (or stranger) might offer some Xanax, Valium, Ambien, Adderall, or Ritalin to calm what you didn’t know ailed you. You might wonder whatever happened to soothing bath salts and deep breathing, but some of my more pressing questions include, “How is everyone getting these?” and “Are they as easily prescribed as medical marijuana?” Which, honestly, seems pretty easy.
The Costco, Sam’s Club, and BJ’s experience is like no other.
Going to one of these stores is an event, really. I recently learned Costco exists in a few other countries, which must mean the world is becoming a better place, because it’s kind of like the Ikea of all of the things Ikea doesn’t sell. But in bulk. What, you don’t think you need 60 rolls of toilet paper?
Seriously, it’s not uncommon to leave the store with cereal, some bath mats, new skis, a pair of eyeglasses, over-the-counter drugs, shockingly low‐priced wine, and all of the meat you could possibly eat at a summer cookout. You’re also likely to treat yourself to a slice of pizza or a hot dog on the way out the door, because you deserve it after all of your cost‐effective shopping. Fill up your car’s tank on the way out too, because, why not?
They get passports at the Post Office.
The United States Postal Service — in addition to delivering letters in the rain on Saturdays — can accept passport applications and renewal forms on behalf of the government. Which means, Americans can buy stamps, bubble wrap, super-sized envelopes, and get their most important travel documents — all in one fell swoop.
The practice of being (or trying really hard to be) inoffensive is serious business.
And it’s easy to fall behind on terms as groups are labeled and relabeled.
American news is crazy hyper-local.
Yes, it’s implied in the term “local news,” but this is the only news many people actually watch, so it can be a little tough for non‐Americans to watch without wondering if any producers had considered an “in other (more global) news” segment.
On the next article, Read about the best States to live, work and for Families. Also read the places to get jobs and what types of Jobs are Available. Always remember to leave a Comment and let us know what you think.