Life in the US as an Aussie

Photo by David Dibert on

Having now lived in Boston, MA, USA for almost 5 years, I thought I’d share some fun differences I’ve noticed as an Aussie living in the States.

Language differences

  1. A faucet is a tap
  2. A/C instead of Air Con
  3. Sidewalk instead of footpath
  4. Elevator instead of taking the lift
  5. Taking vacation instead of going on holiday
  6. Fall instead of Autumn
  7. Cookies instead of biscuits (in fact, biscuits are more like savoury scones in the US)
  8. Burgers are for beef, so what Aussies would call a chicken burger is actually a chicken sandwich in the US
  9. College students have special names for each year of college: freshman, sophomore, junior, senior (rising junior is someone who’s about to go into their 3rd year).

Other differences

  1. Keep to the right side of the elevator in the US (in Australia it’s the left)
  2. Pumpkin spice everything in fall!
  3. Halloween celebrations (we don’t make a huge deal of Halloween back in Australia)
  4. Learning about shovelling snow (never saw snow until I moved to Boston)
  5. Seasons start on the 21st of the month (it’s the 1st day of the month in Australia)
  6. People talk about time in terms of seasons. I’ll do this next Summer/Fall etc (in Australia, we talk in months since the seasons kind of blend into one another and there’s not really a huge distinction between seasons)
  7. Date is written MM/DD/YYYY instead of DD/MM/YYYY
  8. If you order coffee in the US, you will get drip coffee. In Australia, there’s no drip coffee and only espresso options.
  9. Thanksgiving celebrations is unique to the US
  10. People in the US take their holidays during the summer months ~July to August. In Australia, it’s generally around Christmas from December-January so don’t expect quick email responses during these dates

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