A row has been rumbling on social media all week concerning a tweet posted by an American waitress about how Europeans *generally* don’t tip as much as they should do when they are eating in US restaurants. While both sides of the argument have been ranting and raving, one European has taken the interesting route of flipping the entire argument on its head. Let’s see how that’s worked out for her.
Social Norms in Europe That Annoy Americans
Taking to Twitter to join the debate, the user (@vanillatary) posted the following tweet to try and give people a different outlook on the whole debate:
“What dumb and bad European traditions annoy visiting Americans similar to the way that their tipping nonsense annoys us?”
Clarifying what she meant in the comment below to avoid any faux outrage, she added: “More of a social norm than a tradition, I guess, but you know what I mean. Please, no colonialism or school shooting discourse.”
Vanillatary was wise to add that final remark, as there have been some sick people online recently trying to sensationalize the situation and bring in comparisons to world wars and mass shootings.
Responses Flooding In
Anyway, the responses soon came flooding in from Americans who had visited Europe, eager to tell people about things they found strange when visiting the content. One of the most liked comments was, ironically, about tipping culture in some European cities. The comment read:
“European waiters won’t bring you the check. I don’t just mean that you have to ask for it. They try to avoid you and may not bring it even when you ask.”
Thankfully, there were plenty of users who took the debate beyond the world of restaurants, waitpeople, and tipping without going below the belt. One user mentioned a couple of unusual things they encountered when in Germany. They said:
“In Germany, I had to pay for public toilets and had to use traffic lights as a pedestrian.”
The original tweeter responded to this comment by saying that while they agree paying for a toilet is annoying, it usually means they are clean, which isn’t always a given with some free public toilets.
Another user risked the wrath of the British by saying they found their method of queuing a little invasive. They tweeted:
“One thing I will never get over is how people stand right behind me in line. We Americans do love our personal space. I haven’t been to Europe post-covid, so not sure if that still happens.”
One of the best comments came from someone frustrated about “plug culture” across Europe. They said:
“The fact that various countries couldn’t agree on one electric plug, so I have to bring a bunch of adapters when I travel. Meanwhile, North America, most of Central America, northern South America, and a lot of the Caribbean use the same plug.”
Have you ever traveled to Europe and found a certain tradition or norm out of left field? If so, how did you react? Let us know in the comments.
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