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People Are Sharing The Things The U.S. Has That Europe Lacks, And I'm Suddenly Feeling Proud To Be American

"As a European who visited the America 16 years ago, I am still thinking about it."

If you've ever traveled to Europe, it's easy to ooh and aah over all the amazing aspects of European culture (hello: amazing, cheap table wine, budget flights that take you around the country in no time, and incredible architecture dating back to Medieval Times). At the same time, there are some pretty great things about America that Europe lacks. So Redditor u/Dependent-End5909 asked, "What is something Americans have which Europeans don't have?" Here's what people had to say.

1. "Good Mexican food. The worst meal of my entire life was at a Mexican place in Slovakia."

A plate of tacos with a margarita.
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u/WindhoekNamibia

"This is incredibly true. I got 'Mexican' food in Italy once. The salsa was essentially ketchup."

u/GDMFusername

2. "And barbeque. Delicious smoked barbeque."

A plate of barbecue.
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—u/moops__


3. "There are no Florida Man stories in Europe."

Many people at a crowded beach.
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4. "Outlets with 120 volts. My friends from the U.K. brought their own electronics over for a six-month stay, I asked to borrow a hair dryer after a night at their place. They had a U.K. to U.S. converter, but it would've been faster to air dry my hair. On the flip side, when I tried using my electronics in the U.K. with an adapter converter, my hairdryer and steamer immediately fried."

A woman drying her hair.
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5. "Ice water. In the U.S., you're given a tall glass of cold water as soon as you are seated at a restaurant. In Europe, expect to order fancy bottled water. I just want to chug some refreshing tap water."

A glass with ice water.
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6. "Our currency has bill for the the one dollar. I do wonder how Europeans tip strippers with Euro coins."

A crumbled up dollar bill.
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7. "Normal sized appliances. Every European who has seen my moderately-sized refrigerator says 'your refrigerator is the size of my whole flat.'"

A full-sized refrigerator.
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8. "Sinks with garbage disposals. As a kid in Europe I was always told not to put food down the sink. Meanwhile Americans are like 'if I don't eat it, the drain can have it.'"

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9. "College sports. In case any Americans are wondering, university sport as a spectator event is literally not a thing in any meaningful sense in the U.K., with the exception of a single rowing race once a year. Uni's have sports teams for sure, but crowds are minimal and TV coverage non-existent."

A college football game.
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10. "As a European who visited the U.S. 16 years ago, I am still thinking about your amazing sweets selection. Please send Twizzlers to Slovakia!"

A pile of candy.
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11. "We don't have air conditioning in northern Europe and many other parts of the country, which is a requirement in most places in America."

Someone setting the temperature on the air conditioning.
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12. "Bigger food portions. For example, a small or regular-sized meal is considered a large in European countries."

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13. "Automatic ice dispensers in refrigerators. In fact, it's such an American concept that you only find it on fridges that are labelled 'American style.'"

A large fridge with an ice dispenser
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14. "Root beer. It's a popular beverage in the United States, but visitors from Europe frequently comment on how strange it tastes."

A Root Beer float.
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15. "It's not a physical thing, but America has a sense of optimism you don't often feel in Europe. I've lived in both Europe and North America, and there is something in the air in the U.S. that instils a 'go for it' attitude in people. I found that in the E.U., the idea of doing something risky on your own immediately leads people to think there's no way it will work out."

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16. "Ice cream flavor variety. Seriously, my British friends are always amazed when I tell them about how many flavors I get to choose from."

An ice cream display with many flavors
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17. "Legal right turn on red. IMO it's one of the America's greatest contributions to society."

A red traffic light.
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18. "One million choices in the cereal aisle."

The cereal aisle at the grocery store
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19. "Wide open space. I love spending time in Europe, but man, it's amazing to come home to the U.S. and have hundreds of thousands of miles of nothing but open country to explore, hike, ride, camp, etc. A lot of this land isn't even included in national or state parks, which are also amazing."

Highway at Big Sur, California.
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20. "The cheap price of gas. I don’t think most Americans understand how cheap gas truly is in the U.S. Just wait until you see the price in Europe."

A gas station pump
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21. "Drive thru everything! Drive thru Starbucks, McDonald's...I’ve even heard the U.S. has drive-thru bands and liquor stores. As someone from Europe, that’s a crazy concept to me."

A McDonald's drive-thru.
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22. "Pancakes with maple syrup. People from Europe are always amazed by how much sugar is in American breakfast. Go to the U.K. and there is none. Go to Amsterdam where pancakes are basically the national specialty, but you'll see they are mostly savory."

Pouring maple syrup onto a stack of pancakes.
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23. "The Grand Canyon. We don't have that at home, and it's one of the most amazing places I've ever visited."

The Grand Canyon.
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u/Ulf67

24. "Ranch dressing. Why is it so good? And why don't we have it in Europe??"

Fried mozzarella sticks with ranch dressing.
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25. "Diners. One of the best meals you will ever eat is American diner food at 2 a.m."

A burger, fries, and a green milkshake.
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26. "A more ecologically diverse country. Here in the U.S. we have virtually every climate and ecosystem on the gradient."

Desert landscape in Joshua Tree, California.
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27. "Hot pockets and pizza rolls. God bless America."

Pizza rolls on a baking sheet.
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28. "Middle class folks with 2,500 square feet of new construction homes on four or more acres. You don't see that where I'm from."

Suburban houses in a row.
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29. "Massive tubs of cheap peanut butter. It's rare and expensive in most of Europe, sold only in small 4- or 8-ounce containers."

A jar of creamy peanut butter.
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30. "International food. Most mid-size U.S. towns in the middle of nowhere boast better Chinese, Korean, Japanese, Mexican, Indian, and Middle Eastern food than most European capitals."

Korean BBQ.
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31. "Extracurricular activities at school. Playing a specific sport or being part of a team isn't something schools offer where I'm from in Europe. My cousins live in Texas and the fact that their school has tennis courts and a pool blows my mind. Some schools here have small clubs like theater or choir, but they don't compare to those in the States. U.S. high school theater plays can sometimes look like professional productions. It's insane."

32. "Dipping sauce and condiments. We have so many kinds in the U.S. I went to a burger place in Italy and they didn’t even have ketchup — only olive oil and balsamic everywhere I went. I was really looking forward to going home to some good ol' BBQ, Ranch, honey mustard, and buffalo sauces."

Different dipping sauces.
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33. "Boozy Sunday brunch. The only other country I know that has it is the U.K. Most other European countries basically close down on Sundays. But here in the U.S., Sundays are for unlimited mimosas and football."

Pouring Champagne into orange juice glasses.
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34. "You can drive anywhere on half the continent without a passport, knowing only one language."

A red car driving on Route 66.
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35. "Around-the-clock access to food. The majority of the world doesn't have late-night fast food restaurants, let alone 24 hour grocery stores. In America if I need groceries at 3 a.m. in the U.S., they won't be too hard to find."

A neon 24-hour sign.
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36. Anything you would add to this list? Share in the comments!