The 20 American things that horrify Brits most

As a former colony of the UK, it’s hardly surprising the US and the UK share many cultural traits. However, it’s also the case that’s as George Bernard Shaw allegedly said “Britain and America are two nations divided by a common language” So, with this in mind, let’s take a look the 20 American things that horrify Brits most – as suggested by Redditors recently on AskReddit.

1. “The ads – both the content and the recurrence! Bloody hell, all your TV shows have like an ad a minute.”


2. “Greeters in supermarkets. Just feels so fake.”


3. “Stores showing the price pre tax. Here in the UK the price you see is the price you pay.”


4. “Gaps in bathroom stalls.”


5. “Telling me how much the tip is going to be.”


6. “Chanting the acronym of your country at any given opportunity.”


7. “Cashiers being forced to stand… give them a fucking chair you masochists”


8. “Sharing dorm rooms in college. Pretty much unheard of in the UK.”


9. “Not pronouncing the ‘h’ in ‘herbs’.”


10. “Chatting casually at the lift.”


11. “Commercials advertising prescription drugs, “Ask your doctor if OxyContin is right for you””


12. “Addressing a stranger as ‘Sir’”


13. “Politicians mentioning religion when campaigning”


14. “Iced tea”


15. “Huge portion sizes. Kids meal in U.S is like a adult meal in U.K.”


16. “Spray on cheese”


17. “Bum bag”, not “fanny pack”.


18. “How much sugar is added to US food v UK food.”


19. “Eating sandwiches without butter on the bread.”


20. “Responding to work emails while on leave/vacation.”

So here’s the 20 American things that horrify Brits most, according to Reddit. Needless to say, there’s probably plenty more than this, after all Americans have been horrifying Brits nearly 250 years, So if any more come to mind, we’d love to hear them in the comments down below. Alternatively, why not enjoy 29 American customs that surprise the rest of the world. 

14 replies

  1. You left out talking too loud. I’ve got both nationalities but it is the thing that really pisses most Europeans, not just Brits, off about Americans visiting Europe. It’s like being hammered on the head.

    We all live close to each other here; keeping your voice down is good manners.

  2. No2 Why are they called ‘bathrooms ‘ when there’s no bath?

    No4 I’ve never called anyone ‘Sir ‘ since I left secondary school aged 16 in 1952.

  3. The USA is not a “former colony of the UK”. Thirteen former English colonies simultaneously declared independence on 4th July 1776. The Articles of Confederation were not presented to Congress until October 1777 Article 1 stating “The name of this Confederation shall be ‘The United States of America'” and these were not ratified by all thirteen states until 1781. The UK did not exist until a quarter century after the Declaration of Independence when the Act of Union (with Ireland) was passed in 1801 creating the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Ireland.

  4. 7 should say sadists.
    I was horrified that a tip was expected even when the service was rubbish.. until I heard what the staff were paid. It shouldn’t be legal to pay people so little.

  5. The words ‘awesome’ and ‘blessed’ used at every opportunity – usually unnecessarily. Their mouths full of teeth – a visit to an orthodontist in their teens would sort that out over here, and would stop them looking like horses. Cheese with every meal in some form or other – whether you want it or not! And, worst of all, lukewarm tea, made with water from a tap. I’d even rather drink their awful, weak coffee than to have to drink their tea. My late in-laws lived there for seven years, and I’m sure they could add more.

  6. It’s always baffled me how Americans manage to get “al-oo-mi-num” out of “aluminium”. Can anyone explain it? Also “erbs” instead of “herbs” ????????????

  7. I like to see the price shown pre-tax. You are then constantly being reminded that the government has their fingers in your pocket.

  8. Americans love to use the word ‘AND’ in a prolonged way, and then they pronounce it ‘AYEND’. Then there is no ‘U’ in ‘COLOUR’, and many, if not all other words of the like. But the strangest thing is that they cannot pronounce the vocal ‘O’ as in ‘HOT’. It’s like they’re saying ‘HEART’ (minus the ‘R’). It doesn’t shock me, but it is annoying.

  9. “John Bitmead
    August 7, 2021 10:41 pm
    No2 Why are they called ‘bathrooms ‘ when there’s no bath?

    No4 I’ve never called anyone ‘Sir ‘ since I left secondary school aged 16 in 1952.”

    Because it’s where you WASH and it derives from the British “wash closet”.

    Re No4, it’s called MANNERS

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