Tips for Brits Traveling to the U.S.
Most Brits living in the U.S. will have some guests coming over from the Mother Country. While expats may already be used to the American life, visitors are naturally not.
If you’re a British traveler setting your sights on the U.S., these tips will help you blend in more easily:
Have your host’s full street address in handy because you’ll have to supply it on the immigration paperwork. Whether or not you have someone meeting you at the airport, authorities will still ask for the address where you plan to stay for the entire duration of your visit. Remember, it has to be complete.
If you’re visiting during summer, be sure to use some sunscreen when you’re outdoors. It can get very hot in the U.S., especially in certainly places. Even in northern cities such as Chicago, the lattitude is 42 N (to give you an idea, Leeds is 53.7 N).
When you’re in America, avoid talking about politics, guns, religion and other sensitive topics. Brits can engage in a heated debate one minute and have a beer with their opponent the next, but Americans don’t usually do that, especially with strangers.
Many Brits just don’t see how expensive medical treatment in the U.S. generally is. Remember as well that you may need to pay wit hyour own cash, and then file for reimbursement when you return home. In short, don’t travel to the U.S. without any liquid funds.
Don’t bother packing toiletries – you’ll find them in the U.S. too. Besides, they’re heavy and they’ll make you waste your baggage allowance. Your host will have readied some toiletries for your use anyway.
When shopping, don’t assume that the price you see is exactly what you’ll pay. Most states have sales tax and you won’t find it on the tag. And there’s no tourist tax refund as with VAT, though you may not have to pay tax if you’re shipping back to the U.K.
And speaking of shopping, be sure to leave ample room in your suitcase for that new wardrobe you’ll be buying. A lot of Brits indulge while they’re in the U.S. where prices can be drastically cheaper compared to back home.
Finally, when you shop for food and other items at the grocery store, don’t bag your own stuff. You’re not expected to in most cases, and you ay even cause a little fuss if you try. Simply stand and wait for the checkout person to do the task. There are a few exceptions, and you can rely on your common sense for this one. If everyone else is bagging their own stuff, start bagging yours.