Like many Americans, you might be renewing your passport and jetting off to Europe this summer to experience a change of scenery, new culture, and amazing food. Depending on your destination, there are a few things you should know about local customs and practices. To not stand out as an obvious tourist, keep these three tips in mind as you travel outside your country this summer.
Do Not Be Scared Of Public Transport
When you are staying in a major European city, do not shy away from taking public transport. It is an inexpensive and easy way to get around and have a real taste of what life is like in that particular city. For those who might have been leaning towards renting a car, keep in mind that in Europe, there are many traffic rules and regulations that are not the same as those of the United States.
If ever you were involved in an accident, you might have to pay damages to the rental company or even hire a car accident lawyer in America. What’s more, European metropolises are not set up for cars in the same way US cities are. The safest and most authentic way to see a city is to traverse it in the same way its habitants do— by bike, foot or public transport!
Restaurants “Cash You Out” At The Register
When you are enjoying the culinary delicacies that your European city of choice has to offer, it is completely appropriate to ask for your check when seated at the table. However, do not wait for your server to return to your table with a card machine to cash you out. In 95% of European dining establishments, you go to the register to pay your bill. Knowing this might save you a lot of time and frustration.
On that note, many people think that when coming to Europe, they need to go to costly currency converters in order to get Euros in exchange for their dollars.
Cash is less and less common these days as the general public prefers to pay via the cashless and contactless method. Check with your bank before leaving and make sure there are no additional charges for overseas transactions and enjoy your cashless autonomy!
Be Mindful Of Opening Hours, Especially In The Summer
Lastly, keep in mind that European businesses do not stay open all day long, nor are they open on Mondays (and sometimes Sundays). This is true for both restaurants and boutiques. If there is a place you would like to go, look up their opening hours on Google before heading there. There is nothing more disappointing than seeing a “Closed” sign on a place you had desperately hoped to check out!