10 myths about Americans that you will say goodbye to when you move to the USA - ForumDaily
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10 myths about Americans that you will say goodbye to when you move to the USA

During my life in the USA, I said goodbye to many of my stereotypes and prejudices about Americans. Here's just one of them: in the States they eat only fast food, so there are a lot of overweight people there.

Photo: Instagram /@karina_kudinova

Myth 1: All Americans are workaholics

I lived for a long time believing in this myth. Until I started working with Americans and realized that they come to the office early not at all in order to work longer, but in order to leave early.

People in the US often start their workday at 7:00 am and leave for home at 15:00 pm. Staying after a hard day to finish some business is not at all like Americans. Work outside normal hours is possible only for an additional fee or is compensated by days off.

2 Myth: Overweight People in the US

This is perhaps the most common prejudice against Americans. Of course, I can’t vouch for the entire United States, but this is definitely not about Seattle. The vast majority of people here play sports, run and obsessively watch their diet. Almost every high-rise building has a gym that is open to all residents, and this is not counting the countless online sports clubs.

But sometimes you can meet very fat people. They are equated with people with disabilities, and they move in automated wheelchairs. Bus drivers help them to call in and even lower the bus lower if a full person is without a wheelchair.

Washington state has only 27,7% of overweight people, making it one of the states with the lowest number of overweight people in the country.

3 Myth: America has a good tax system

In Russia, a company fills out your taxes for you, and you don’t even see all this paperwork. In the US, once a year in the spring everyone starts going crazy because it's tax filing time. Everyone has to do it themselves, and many locals get their own financier to do it for them. They pay him $400 for this service.

Myth 4: There are many educated people in the States

Few people know, but in the United States there are not many people with higher education, and they usually enroll in a master's program several years after graduating from a bachelor's degree.

Фото: Depositphotos

There are two main reasons for this. Firstly, the high cost of training in the magistracy. Many young people are forced to take large loans to continue their studies. Therefore, before entering the magistracy, they pause to make a choice. Secondly, to get on this or that specialty, you must first accumulate hours on it, and only then submit an application.

Myth 5: American women are socially protected

Yes, indeed, women are protected in some respects here: just try to raise your hand or allow yourself any hint of harassment - and you will be punished to the fullest extent of the law, even more.

On the subject: How do immigrants protect themselves in case of domestic violence

There is a huge "but": in the US there is almost no maternity leave. Duration and compensation depend on the originally signed contract with the company. Most often maternity leave lasts no more than a month.

In transnational corporations, it can even go up to six months, but no one guarantees the preservation of the workplace. Of course, many women are completely unhappy with this state of affairs.

Myth 6: There is no bureaucracy in the USA

Alas, there is. Government agencies are working with long delays and disruptions. My friends were forced to not go to work because of paperwork and could not fly out of the country. I myself was mistakenly extended the wrong visa, which is why I almost lost my work permit and got stuck in Russia for the 3 month.

Myth 7: Americans eat mostly fast food.

Stories about Americans' strong attachment to fast food are not entirely true. All sorts of McDonald's, KFC, Burger King, Subway and similar establishments are not held in high esteem here. There are almost none in Seattle. They are mainly scattered along country roads, because, as a rule, two categories of people eat there: those who travel and are in a hurry, and those who are very tight with money.

On the subject: 10 fast food restaurant chains that pay for college

But burgers and sandwiches can be found in the menu of almost every restaurant and even choose the degree of roasting meat. Such high-quality burgers are almost like a regular dish from the menu - sometimes the price reaches $ 20. So it is not so and “fast”, and not so bad.

Myth 8: The States have the best healthcare system

Here, of course, modern equipment, service and technology. But what is happening with the cost of medical care and insurance, confuses even the employees of the medical sector. There is no compulsory medical insurance in America, but there are a huge number of different programs.

Фото: Depositphotos

At best, the employer pays insurance. At worst, you buy it yourself or you live without it at your own risk. But even if there is insurance, before starting a particular medical procedure it is not known how much it will ultimately cost. After the treatment, the insurance company and the clinic agree on how much your insurance plan will cover, and how much you will pay from your pocket. And sometimes you have to pay extra sums.

Another complication: in the US pharmacy, nothing can be bought without a prescription, except for the most common means. When I scalded the stomach with boiling water, the only thing I was sold was aloe. If you want real medicine, then go to the doctor, and the record is usually two weeks.

Myth 9: Americans are always polite and friendly

This would be true if I were a tourist. When it comes to service and the politeness of an employee determines his workplace - everyone is impeccably nice. However, hidden behind the wheel of their car, Americans like to be rude: stick their middle finger out the window, curse, park in two spaces at once. Security guards in the USA are also not very polite. I would even say that they are often overly aggressive for no reason.

Myth 10: Celebrities walk along the Los Angeles Walk of Fame, surrounded by expensive boutiques

When I first visited the Hollywood Walk of Fame, I was very disappointed. I imagined this to be a place with chic architecture, expensive boutiques and walking celebrities. In fact, mostly tourists walk along the Walk of Fame; there is not a single boutique here, only souvenir shops, fast food eateries, and a few cinemas. However, after living a little in America, I fell in love with this place, even though it is completely different from what I once imagined.

As you can see, on TV we are often shown only one side of the medal, but in fact most often it is only a half-truth. As elsewhere, there are many interesting and positive discoveries in America, but there are quite a few pitfalls and little disappointments.

The original column is published in Instagram Karina Kudinova.

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