Know your American visitor


'Hello' or 'hi'

Being asked overly personal questions (but they do love interaction and conversation).

Often they like to try food from different cultures, but nothing too adventurous, and always err on the healthy side.

Many Americans are coffee fanatics, so good coffee in big cups is always a win. Iced coffee in summer is a good option.

Tour guides must be knowledgeable and friendly, as most Americans like interaction.

Usually Americans want to experience the local culture wherever they go, so make sure they have unique activities and places to enjoy.

Americans often enjoy grilled meat, so a braai would go down well.

Often they enjoy the service of a hotel to organise their day trips and excursions, but when it comes to dining make sure you suggest fun, trendy restaurants and bars.

Americans are usually generous tippers, tipping up to 15-20%, and sometimes in America the tip is included in the bill, so you may have to mention if this is not the case in your establishment.

Often, Americans are used to having a lot of personal space when interacting with others.

In the USA it is usually considered proper not to phone someone after 9.30pm.

Many Americans consider it rude to ask questions about how much they earn and how much more expensive items cost.

It is also usually best to avoid topics such as politics, religion, homosexuality, racism, abortion, criticism of the government and criticism of an individual's patriotism, when speaking to Americans.

Always be aware that treating men and women differently is unacceptable when interacting with Americans.

Some things that Americans usually consider rude are spitting, chewing with one’s mouth open, staring and picking one’s nose.