English is spoken in both England and America, but in the case of certain words, locals in each country may as well be speaking different languages. To help you avoid any social faux pas on either side of the pond, here are some words that have completely different meanings and history in England and America.
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1. GuatemalaAn express adventure for those with limited time off. Prepare yourself incredible experiences. You will hike a volcano, visit mayan temples and witness a ceremony and take in beautiful colonial Antigua.
2. BelizeA quick trip not too far away for those seeking a relaxing mini break. You will have plenty of free time to relax but also some awesome activities to experience the rainforest and the caribbean sea.
3. MexicoAn exciting mini trip exploring the lesser known colonial towns of central Mexico. This is hte perfect trip for someone with limited time off and still wants to turn on explorer mode and do something different.
1. EcuadorA remarkable 8 days adventure through the Andes and the Amazon rainforest. The best choice for adventure seekers wishing to visit the 2 most iconic areas of South America, in only 1 week and no flights.
2. PeruAn alternative itinerary to classic Peru, from Cusco to Arequipa. This itinerary is great combination of highlights Cusco and Machu Picchu with the lesser known Arequipa and Colca Canyon.
1. ItalyThe ultimate Italian experience from the vibrant streets of Naples to the breathtaking sceneries of the Amalfi Coast followed by Matera and down to Puglia with its golden beaches, intense flavours and fascinating destinations.
2. ScotlandEmbark on this great adventure starting from London all the way to Scotland with a true Scottish experience made of breathtaking sceneries, whisky tasting and ..lots of fun! Ideal for train lovers and explorers.
3. PortugalA wonderful train journey around Portugal, from the romantic city of Porto to the Douro Valley, to the beautiful Aveiro all the way to Lisbon and Sintra. The perfect trip to train, culinary and culture lovers.
1. South KoreaDiscover incredible temples, mountains and modern cities on this 10 day adventure. This trip is perfect for those seeking immersion in the cuisine, culture and natural wonders of South Korea.
2. ThailandFrom Bankgok to Angkor Wat to Ho Chi Minh City and everything in between - adventure through the heart of South-East Asia. Taste the delights, see history brought to life and unwind on a Mekong River cruise.
3. Sri LankaA fantastic adventure that showcases Sri Lanka's fantastic landscapes, wildlife and flavours. With 3 epic rail journeys, 3 UNESCO heritage sites and time to relax, this trip has loads to offer at a great price
1. MoroccoAn epic journey across Morocco: from Casablanca to Marrakech, through the blue city of Chefchaouen to the wonders of the desert and deep to the High Atlas Mountains - this trip has it all! Ideal for true explorers!
2. EgyptFrom Cairo to Aswan, this trip brings the land of the pharaohs to life. You'll visit the Pyramids, Valley of the Kings and Luxor Temple and cruise down the Nile in style. This is the perfect way to explore Egypt.
In American English, “purse” is a term used to describe a woman’s handbag. In England, however, you’d typically find a purse in a woman’s handbag, as it refers to a wallet (usually a woman’s wallet, rather than a man’s, which is just called… a wallet.)
A somewhat derogatory term, “geezer” is used in the U.S. to refer to an older man. One wouldn’t be so quick to criticize a geezer in the U.K., however, where the word is somewhat synonymous with ‘lad’ – a hyper-masculine sort of man who enjoys beer, football, and the occasional scrap.
In America, “chips” is the name for thinly sliced deep-fried potato snacks (known as “crisps” in the U.K.), while U.K. eaters—we mean, er, speakers—know chips as thick-cut deep-fried potato slices. Both versions are delicious, so even if you use the “wrong” word, the outcome will taste more than all right.
If there’s one shapeshifting word to know, it’s “pants.” In the U.S., “pants” means trousers or outerwear worn from the waist to the ankles. Across the pond, U.K. locals consider “pants” as underwear, a helpful piece of insight for those hoping to avoid any confusion.
Knowing the American and British meanings of this word could mean the difference between enjoying your restaurant order and being surprised by it. In America, a “biscuit” is a buttery bread akin to a dinner roll, which can accompany savory dishes, while English locals follow savory meals with a biscuit, or cookie.
Knowing this word’s dual meanings could spare you an embarrassing moment. When an England local refers to a “rubber,” they’re speaking about a rubber eraser used to remove pencil markings. In America, however, the term isn’t school-age appropriate, referring to a condom, or a popular contraceptive.
Sorry, Americans: Brits’ definition of football, a team sport involving a round ball manipulated mainly by one’s feet, makes more logical sense than the American version involving an oval ball that is primarily thrown and held by hand.
U.S. speakers call door-to-door salespeople “solicitors,” while U.K. locals use the same term to refer to lawyers. Both places can agree that more often than not a visit from either of these is unwanted.
In England, a “jumper” is a cozy pullover sweater, a far cry from the colloquial American definition: a person who commits suicide by jumping from a high point, such as a building or bridge.
Never miss an appointment again after learning the different meanings of this term. While Americans consider the phrase “first floor” to describe the building floor at ground level, Brits refer to the floor above ground level as the “first floor.”
Next time you receive an invitation to an event requiring “fancy dress,” you’ll be glad you memorized the term’s two very different meanings. If the soiree’s in the U.S., formal attire, such as ball gowns and black tie, is what’s called for, while fancy-dress functions in the U.K. are costume parties, requiring informal get-ups modeled after famous figures. Phew—fashion faux pas avoided.
In England, “chaps” is a colloquial term for a group of men. On the other side of the Atlantic, Americans use “chaps” to refer to an article of clothing worn by cowboys, more specifically, leather leggings designed to protect one’s legs while horseback riding. Needless to say, this is one English word likely to get lost in translation.
Similar to “chaps,” in the U.K., “bird” is a popular colloquial, albeit somewhat derogatory, term for a woman. Apparently, Americans haven’t received that memo, as the only birds around these parts are of the feathered and winged variety.
If a U.S. speaker says they are “pissed,” they’re angry. If a Brit says the same, they’re drunk. In both America and England, this scenario is a shopkeeper’s worst nightmare.
In America, “braces” are devices used to straighten one’s teeth, worn mostly by children and adolescents. Meanwhile, in England, “braces” can be suspenders, or tools worn to hold up trousers or skirts, often sported by older generations.
In America, a “bog” is a wetland area featuring muddy grounds and a swamp-like environment. Luckily for Brits, on a good day, the local “bog,” or bathroom, will smell a lot better than this.
A “trainer” in the U.S. is a professional hired to train you to exercise. “Trainers,” on the other hand, are shoes akin to sneakers, which can be worn during exercise (or on a walk to the pub—we won’t tell!).
A “bin” in the U.S. is a storage container, while in the U.K., the same term refers to a garbage can. Learn this word’s dual meanings before setting out to help someone else with their spring cleaning.
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