15 Big Things Peoples Families Were Most Shocked by When Visiting America

Have you had family from outside the states visit and be shocked by something in America? You’ve got company. These are stories collected from an online American community where people can ask and did ask for examples of what shocked their families.

1. Not Seeing Another Car

One American explained their Indian cousin was surprised that you could drive on the road and not see another car. Others had families that felt the same way.

Related: Top 10 Most Innocent of the 50 United States of America

2. Shooting Range With Kids

“That people would take their kids to the shooting range.” Another American explained that his uncle was worried that if people back home heard he had done that, they’d take his son away.

3. Bugs

Bugs in the south are an entirely different breed of disgusting. And it didn’t go unnoticed by one American’s British family. As an American from the north, it also didn’t go unnoticed with me, and I’ve retreated north.

4. Big Box Stores

Costco and Walmart blew families away. One stated their Italian family described Costco as “Wow!!!! It’s like if Amazon was a store!!!”

5. Cheap Electronics

Somebody’s Argentinian family couldn’t believe the “sheer availability” of anything you could want and how cheap electronics are in comparison. “Argentina has very high import tariffs, so a PlayStation 5 at the black market rate is over $1000 and closer to $2000 at the official exchange rate.”

6. Wide Roads

One American’s aunt and uncle from the U.K. were amazed by how wide our roads are. They were also amused by the names we have for places like Dead Man’s Crossing, Bullethole Creek, or Nothing, Arizona. Another noted, “I swear that in America, you can find a residential street that is dang near as wide as an international Euro highway.”

7. Drive-Thrus

People visiting from the U.K. were astounded by all the drive-thrus, such as drive-thru pharmacies and banks. Several Americans agreed they had families that were shocked by the drive-thru services in the States.

8. Root Beer

Germans in America are not overly impressed with root beer. One said, “it tastes like medicine or mouthwash.” During the 90s, we had German foreign exchange students at my high school.

We took them out, and they tried to order beers. I cracked a joke about root beer because sixteen-year-olds can’t order beer here. They were not impressed. They did love Mountain Dew; at the time, it wasn’t available in Germany.

9. Car Size

According to this German, after visiting family in St. Paul, Minnesota, “the size of the cars blew me away.” They elaborated that even smaller SUVs seem to be 1.5 x the size of European cars. In addition, the neighbors had what looked like a monster truck “on their drive.”

10. Food Scene and Portion Sizes

It didn’t matter what country families were visiting from; they all agreed that American food portions were shocking. Additionally, many noted America has the widest variety of food from all over the world, which is impressive.

11. Heat and Humidity

The heat and humidity shocked foreigners visiting families from Iowa to North Carolina and Georgia to the south. And, again, as someone from the north, I, too, cannot do the humidity in the south. It’s entirely another level of uncomfortable and hot. Add the mosquitoes to the mix, and no, I’m good.

12. Tunnels

Someone’s family from Scotland was shocked by tunnels. The user suggested there aren’t many tunnels in Scotland, and their jaws dropped when they realized they were driving under the harbor.

13. Corn

People from the U.K. found it hilarious that Americans eat corn, and right off the cob too. They couldn’t get over it and stated, “that’s what animals eat!”

14. Big Houses

One American shared that their cousins from Spain were utterly surprised by the sizes of houses in America. Additionally, they couldn’t get over her king-size bed. Finally, they “also mentioned that the neighborhoods here with grass lawns and driveways look like the Simpsons.”

Related: Top 15 Ugliest Cities in America According to the Internet

15. Lightening Bugs

Russians found lightning bugs surprising and captivating. The first few nights, they watched in the backyard and wondered if jet lag or something was causing them to see tiny flashes of lights. So the American caught a couple in a mayonnaise jar for them to view.

This thread inspired this post.


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