Study Abroad 101, Travel

Differences France v. USA

As we all know there will always be some sort of cultural shock when visiting a new country. And I am no different. Being here for about two months I have noticed a lot of differences between my home country and France.

1. In France the school schedule finishes at different times each day.

My longest day at my school is Thursday; I finish at 6pm! But the nice thing is everything Wednesday it’s a half day so I guess that makes up for it ;).

2. No toilet seats in public bathrooms.

From what I’ve seen lately, my school and gas stations don’t have toilet seats. I learned from my host sister that you’re not really suppose to sit down on the toilet, you just squat. They do this because it isn’t hygienic.

3. 1,000 or 1.000/ 1.25 or 1,25

So this can get a little confusing. The french write their decimals with a comma instead of a point, and for 1,000 or 1,000,000 they use points instead of commas (1.000 or 1.000.000).

4. Driving age.

In the USA you can drive at the age of 16 and in France you can drive at the age of 18.

5. Family lunches and dinner.

Growing up in the USA I never had a lot of family dinner/lunches, sitting around the table. But here in France you always have family dinners/lunches.

6. Dinner is late.

In the USA my family always ate around 6pm but, here in France we eat around 8-8:30pm.

7. Handwritten

Back in the US everybody had a computer and we had a lot of homework to hand in online. But, here in France everything is handwritten. Also there’s not a lot of homework that is graded.


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