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EP67: Expect the Unexpected! Culture Shocks That Surprised Us
- Published on Mar 1, 2023 veröffentlicht
- Greetings from Munich! Even though Feli's trip came with some complications, she made it home and we got to record an episode in person for you! Granted, we're fresh off a sugar high from all the Krapfen from Fasching/Karneval/Fastnacht… you get the point! Just as a lot of people are surprised to hear that Fasching is celebrated in Munich, we have both been surprised by certain things or culture shocks in our respective chosen countries when we first moved there. From the size of the infrastructure and the true “rudeness” of customer service in Germany or the gun violence and religious prevalence in the U.S. there is a big difference between knowing something and truly experiencing it. Even the most well-prepared travelers can’t be prepared for every situation and quickly learn that it’s best to expect the unexpected. We hope you all enjoy the episode and let us know what surprised you when interacting with other cultures!
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EP43: From Sunny Australia to Running in Shorts in Munich feat. Lachlan ▸ • EP43: From Sunny ...
EP3: Homes and Household Habits (and what's up with those German guest slippers?!) ▸ • EP3: Homes and Ho...
REVERSE CULTURE SHOCK returning to Germany from the USA ▸ • REVERSE CULTURE S...
Circumcision USA vs. Germany - HUGE DIFFERENCE!😱 ▸ • Circumcision USA ...
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Comments • 125
For Americans, I feel like the personal freedom/responsibility of young people is a generational thing. You can "ok boomer" me now, but as someone who grew up in the 60s in LA, I rode my bicycle everywhere, including 3 miles to school every day, and took public transport (buses) all over. I don't recall people driving their kids to school. And nearly everyone got their license at 16, which made it possible for kids to go where they wanted on their own. I find the idea that kids need to be driven to school weird, too.
Hi! Thank you so much for sharing this episode! I don't usually comment, but some of Feli's points really got me thinking. It's surprising to me how much Russia has in common with the States in terms of guns situation and, for instance, in terms of commuting home late at night. I remember just instinctively asking a German girl to let me know once she gets home safely (it happened in Europe). And her reaction was exactly like Feli had in the video , " wait, what?! thanks, but I'm an adult". And I realised back then that this was smth we would always ask our friends(gilrs, specifically) for, like send a dm about getting home safely or calling back to say that everyting is alright, here in Russia... And I guess that general feeling of how secure u feel in a country is smth that really matters and affects all your life. Smth you should really consider before moving e.g., and, I know, that might sound obvious, but it just made me nochmal darueber nachdenken 👀.
And when you were saying about all gun situation in US-schools, Feli, I just got goose bumps, cause that smth we've been experiencing a lot lately here. For the last 5 years, I heard at least about 3-5 situations of shooting in ru-schools near the area where I'm living and every time there were a few victims and it would make me so desperate that this was actually happening.
p.s. sorry for possible mistakes (English isn't my first language😢)
That's really interesting. Thanks for sharing!
Yeah. I live in one of the most dangerous cities in the US, and it's crazy to hear how culturally different those places are. Literally last night, I was up until 5am because I didn't want my friends walking back late, but I was sobering up to drive them. They ofc didn't want to walk either. It wasn't like I was being overprotective or anything
I would love to be in your podcast! I moved to Munich 6-7 months ago and the adaptation process have been complex! I am from Colombia so the cultural shocks are big! I am not from Clip-Share or anything but I would love to share my experience! 😊
As kids, age 11-12, we were kicked out of the house on a Saturday and told to be home for dinner. Rode around on bikes with friends in our suburb. The hover parent Americans are a newer development. I'm age 50.
That was certainly true of my generation (I'm 62). Kids were far less protected, and as a consequence a lot more resilient in those days. When I broke my arm and two front teeth in a bicycle accident, my mother arrived at the emergency room, nearly hysterical. The doctor just looked at her and said, "So what? That's what boys are supposed to do."
Same here in Germany, born in 1971
From former socialist country, roughly your age and the parenting styles of our folks were just the same 😂
This is so true. My Dad would tell us of how he would literally beg to be let back inside, because the second it was *daylight* , his parents would kick him out of the house and *not allow him* back inside until dinner. And yet both he and my Mom were, if not full-blown helicopter parents, at least on the way there. I've read some stuff blaming the advent of 24-hour news, because suddenly it became possible to hear about crime happening anywhere across the continent 24 hours a day, and so paradoxically even though crime rates have been dropping since the early 90s, parents have become increasingly protective.
Same....I live in the US....about same age as OP. Was going to make exactly this comment about helicopter parenting being newer.
When I was last in Germany, I made the unfortunate mistake of joining a tour group where almost everyone else was an American, the lone exception being one woman from Holland. Every day when we met for lunch or dinner, I had to explain to the Americans that the rude, obnoxious behavior they were experiencing from Germans wasn't directed at them specifically; it's just the way Germans typically behave, even toward each other. As often as I told them this, I don't think they ever believed me.
Perhaps you were too direct in pointing that out?
reverse culture shock: I was more than surprised when I was sprayed with perfume when entering a department store, in a restaurant asked if we wanted any thing more, after we said not at the moment, we were presented the bill, after responding maybe later we were told they needed the table for more people (turn around) on these and more occasions I felt being handled rudely. And very capitalistic (money driven)
@Kai von Neu-Lich The purpose of a restaurant is in the US to get your money. Therefore even these fast food outfits are also called restaurant. They have no clue what "rest" means.
I learned something new since I did not realize how common Whatsapp was in Europe. I have used Whatsapp in the U.S. for 4-5 years and was surprised that I was getting my regular chats on one of my European trips. Now I understand why.
It is indeed very common. There might be some people who are worried about data secutity who use other messengers but well over 90% of smartphone users use Whatsapp.
It just spread like a bushfire some years ago when most people had no unlimited text messages. Texting via internet and having additional functions was such a relief coming from paying something like 12 ct (€)/ 320 letters.
You showed a picture of the US mail truck. Yes, it has looked like that since the 1950"s. The Grumman company made small airplanes before that, some built for the military. When bids went out for mail trucks, they designed on made of sheets of aluminum with a 40 HP motor. These were light and cost efficient, they didn't rust and could be driven around residential neighborhoods easily. The other car/truck manufacturers were already beyond that size and weight. The design still works and serves its purpose and has been a "cash cow" for the Grumman company.
As an American, I've always been told to NEVER send cash in the mail. The post office even says it's forbidden. A landlord can get cash in an envelope delivered in person, but not in the mail. So, even if your landlord tells you to mail cash in the mail, you shouldn't do it.
Great pod as always.
In my experience, WhatsApp came to the public consciousness in 2018 or so and I think I saw a Pew poll that said maybe 20% of Americans use it regularly.
As for the safety and independence topics; it depends on where and when you grew up. Being a millennial in my 30s, I definitely had the "go out and explore", be back around dark mentality.
I live in Chicago which has a bad rep for crime, but it's not something I'm thinking about constantly. I still walk around in the evening and run on the lake path. We have had a wave of carjackings, however generally it does feel safe on a localized level.
(In the US) A friend of mine asked me if I could help her fix something on her iPhone, and I had to tell her that I had an Android, not an iPhone. She responded, "Oh, yeah. All you techno-geeks have Android instead!" And, that's pretty much the way it is: those who know computers and such avoid Apple products, unless work requires them. (And, even in most work situations, our primary, work platforms are Windows for development [and gaming], and Linux for server work, while any work specific to Mac or iOS is segregated, by itself, onto Apple devices. Development tools on Mac are still extremely difficult to use, when they're available at all.)
I am 70 and when I was growing up, most of America was as safe as Germany is now. It began to change in the 1960s.
Everyone should work one year in customer support by law. Then we talk about if you would have the Energy to be overly friendly to every customer after you were insulted and yelled at for no reason multiple times. It litteraly can drain all happines out of you. German and Austrian customers can be very very hard to deal with.
When visiting the US some years ago, one place I stayed was Silver Spring (MD). One day I was strolling along a sidewalk heading in the approximate direction of DC, no signs of trouble anywhere, when suddenly a cop cruiser comes shooting past in the opposite direction, lights and sirens going. I turned around and it was like a scene from an American police drama - cop car screeches to a halt, cop leaps out and grabs a Black man off the sidewalk, slams him down on the 'hood', handcuffs him and takes him away. This happened literally thirty metres from where I was standing and I actually looked around me in case I'd accidentally walked into a film set. Surreal.
The other culture shock was the cost of shopping. I was in State College (PA) and found a record shop. Great - I'd look for stuff by Weird Al Yankovic that wasn't easy to find back in England. I went round the shop, picked up some CDs, totted up the total in my mind and made sure I had the correct amount of cash to hand and then when I got to the counter, the total price went from about $87 to about $95 and I wondered if I'd been double-charged for one of the CDs. No - it was just taxes. Americans take this for granted, but it's completely weird for those of us on the other side of the pond - literally not knowing how much your shopping will cost until you get to the checkout. Utterly bizarre. There might even be laws against it in Europe.
Where I live (Philadelphia, PA), a lot of people will order by saying “lemme get a….” which is Ebonics for “let me get” which just has always sounded so rude to me. I usually will ask “can I have/get a….” We also have a slang word “jawn” which is basically another way of saying “thing” and is really just used in Philadelphia 😂
Interesting. And how would you use "jawn" in a sentence?
Often even the seller (right word?) in a Bakery would ask: "What can I give you?" And a typical answer would be: "I'll take..."
I'm one of those who rather places more importace on building up a personal relationship to anybody, I talk to. I usually smile at everybode, who I talk to. (This is rather unusual in Germany.) But I would never feel any hesitation in just saying "I want this and that..." It's just telling, what I want. And everybody knows, there is no other reason for me being in the shop, at all.
At least for an US-American, the German way to order bread is as weird as it is for Swiss people.
If someone says "ICH KRIEG EIN BROT" (I GET A BREAD) in a Swiss bakery, it's very rude. We would say: "I hätt gärn es Brot" (Ich hätte gerne ein Brot - I'd like a bread).
Edit: After Josh's praise for the German public transport: guess what...! There is a small country in the south of Germany with great public transport (and no, i don't talk about Liechtenstein ^^)
But yes, holidays in Switzerland are expensive AF, even for me...
I also had to think of Switzerland when this topic came up. I lived in Switzerland as a German for several years. Having read quite a bit about the cultural differences before moving there, I did my best to avoid any "rude" behavior towards the locals, but I kept hearing complaints about "the Germans" in general. Later, after moving back to Germany, I traveled through Switzerland with a couple of German friends. At a restaurant, one of them ordered his meal using the phrase "Ich kriege...". I tried to explain to him that he was behaving like the stereotypical rude German, but he was persuaded that he hadn't done anything wrong...
I think it also depends on the region. In my region you would always put a "please" at the end if you would order like that. "Ich bekomm ein Pfund Brot, bitte." I don't think it is particularly rude, but that's probably subjective.
I used to enjoy walking in the woods at night. The same old trail which is boring during the day becomes new and exciting at night. Our main rule was no light [flashlights] unless absolutely necessary as it ruins night vision. I once stopped and chatted with a friend on a particularly dark night for about a minute. When i didn't get any response, I slowly reached out my hand to touch them. I touched tree bark. My friend had moved off without my noticing. While not the only time I have ever talked to a tree, it was the first time I was suprised by it. But the sound of something big moving in the brush breaking stuff off to the side of the trail definitely lends excitment. Bears being the main worry. It's very unlikely that a person is hanging around in the middle of nowhere at night. And if so, at least I know they can't see any better than I can.
Back in the day, SMS was a charged service and the cost to SMS across borders in Europe was particularly expensive. WhatsApp was free (minus data charge). In the US, the charge is the same across the country.
back in the 60’s the mailman in the cities walked a lot and delivered mail through a mail slot through the front door. in the suburbs your mailbox was attached to your house beside the front door. now in suburbia, mail are on the street in front of your home and mailmen are in mail trucks.
I think I have a pretty good comparison for how different attacks on campus are handled here. I work at a university campus in Austria and we had an attack this week, a student attacked a professor with a hammer and severely injured him (from what I have heard the professor is doing better already and the perpetrator is in a mental health clinic now, so thankfully nothing too bad). We got an email from the dean about it (I think the last email I got from him was about COVID, so this is rare), a colleague who was not working that day called if everyone is okay and of course it ended up in the national news papers. And I am sure discussions about how to make campus safer will follow...
When I was growing up (in the US) I HAD to start ever request with "May I please....". If I didn't I got a lecture from my parents or teacher. That was decades ago and I don't think kids are taught that anymore. But that stuck with me and I still do it to this day.
Most major US banks have Zelle as a feature for people ro send and receive money through their app or online banking. I've used Zelle to pay for getting my taxes done and have received money via it. I also walk to my bank, but I live around the corner from it I personally think this generation should be taught how to write checks or at the very least postal money orders because knowing how to write checks is a life skill worth having. Granted I haven't written a checj since 2017 and a money order since 2020, but I do still do know how to fill out a money order and write a check. Though she'd signed them, when I was growing up, I'd write the offering checks in church , my mom would give her check book and I'd write out rhe body of the check.
I'm 52 and from Germany. I work as an insurance boker. I have never written a check in my whole life. And there was never the need.
The German way of ordering is also considered rude in Switzerland, which is why there is a stereotype that Germans are impolite/uncultured. In Swissgerman you also put a lot of "please, could I, if its not an inconvenience😅
I am American, and I do not understand this at all. If you are in a restaurant and you are ordering your food, that's not an imposition on anyone. You are making their business possible.
It is necessarily generalizing things. As a German I also somtimes find the way others behave in such situations rather rude.
Many people are so used to this that they are rather dumbfunded when I am more polite than they expected.
@plcwboy It is about nuances. Nobody is suggesting you beg for your food in a restaurant even though you pay for it or similar things regarding interaction with other service providers.
But being somewhat friendly acknowledges that the other person is human, too.
Life is nicer if you treat them as such and they are happy about that. Not that I engage in smalltalk, I am typically German about that. It is just about small things like a "thank you", a "hello", a "have a nice day" etc. others are too lazy to say.
Two points regarding the messaging: Whatsapp only works it you have mobile internet connection so that might have played a role. And it also plays into the finer details of the Apple messaging app where imessage only works to other Apple devices and if you have mobile internet at the time of sending, if you don't have mobile internet at the time of sending the same app sends the message via SMS also to other Apple devices which makes it very confusing
Re: People being more actively involved in politics: The vast majority of Americans are decided on one party or the other. In a multi-party system, there's reason to be invested in each individual election and how the parties compete against each other, but when there's just 2 parties, and it's the same 2 parties over and over again, you really don't gain anything from paying attention to the particulars of the election campaign. It's a logical heuristic to simply not pay that close of attention when the decision is so simple and the parties are so ossified.
There's also, I think, a certain amount of weariness about politics. Our campaign seasons start almost immediately after the *previous* election, unlike in other countries where there is a limited campaigning period, so again after a while it's just like, "I know who I'm going to vote for, and the rest doesn't interest me."
Finally, we have to consider that I think the US is systemically more hostile to voter participation. You don't necessarily need to win a majority, just discourage enough of the other party's voters that your voters consitute a plurality of votes cast. That's a strategy that doesn't work in real multi-party democracies, but it works in the 2-party system of the US. The US has lagged other countries in percentage of the electorate actually casting ballots for decades now, and that has to do with structural discouragement from voting.
Maybe the reason we Americans generally don't use WhatsApp is that since most of us rarely or never leave the country, text messaging is free and easy. For us, WhatsApp sems to make something easy (texting) more complex than it needs to be
90% of the time I just write to my local friends. Just if I'm on vacation and want to send some pictures to my family it would be cross-country. SMS is so outdated for me. Messengers offer options to send pictures, links, my local destination if I want to meet up with people. For instance in a park or lake. It is possible to copy illustrated information about an event etc. or even just add vivd emotes. I haven't send a SMS in years. In the US, in public life cash is basically extincted. Paying the rent in cash or with a check is really strange. Same is to getting your salary as a check instead of getting it by digital transfer. I think the reason is really that it hasn't been established and not promoted/advertised. On the other hand when it comes to inter-communication in a company the US is really progressive. MS Teams or Slack are widely used (Not sure if there are already newer tools there yet). In Germany there have been discussions and restrictions about the data security of Whatsapp and how Facebook/Meta is monetizing the information. Since then, it has been improved and restricted. But there are as well other messengers which are comparable, if you have concerns about Facebook. At the moment I use 3 different apps depending on which friend group I'm talking to.
Peanut butter celery sticks are a great snack. Feli should try it. :)
Hey, Just a note on circumcision, My personal experience on this came from my father in a rather awkward conversation is this: the removal of the foreskin exposes the head of the penis to an unnatural environment that desensitizes it. It can be described as becoming callous like the heal of your foot. Making it less painful during intercourse. But, less stimulating. Just saying.
Note when you travel that some states require a concealed carry permit to carry pepper spray.
Real estate rental is covered by a lot of laws that haven't caught up to modern payment systems. And the payment systems can be really expensive to small landlords.
I am 71. Checks are still the most common way to pay rent. But .... since I am a home owner, I use few checks these day. 2 or 3 in a typical month.
I’d love to visit Cincinnati. I’ve lived in Arizona but currently in the South. I’ve never had to write a check for rent, I don’t even have a checkbook. My parents have checking accounts though. Maybe it’s true for older cities. Do grocery stores still accept checks?
Deliveries: I recommend a "Paket--Safe" on your door or building. I live in a small town and it works pretty good.
Orders at the counter: I grew up here and I don't like these common orders like "Ich bekomme...". That feels rude to me too. "Ich hätte gerne..." and "bitte" is the least you should say. But I'm just an old (school) guy.
Hello in the doctor's waiting room: my theory is "small community greetings". If you're living in a little village or if you are hiking in secluded areas or if you are motorcycling, everybody "belonging to your community" says hello.
Small town in Upper Swabia: I notice if people omit "bitte" and "danke" at the counter in a shop. But I notice that it's happening more often than say 30 or more years ago.
Active shooter drills were not a thing when I was in high school or college, but I was out of law school (at the end of my university trajectory) over 40 years ago.
Everything is small except for the beer mugs in Bavaria :)
To be really sarcastic: How can you bump into someone on the street in Merica when nobody walks?
"Gimme the Bread and nobody gets hurt." 😂
Btw, I prefer my PB on a slice of bread (or, with concord grape jelly, on a toasted pumpernickel bagel) rather than as decoration for a piece of celery.
Feli, Josh, the yellow&blue dutch DMU railway raised some expectation which didn't get satisfied. What was it supposed to indicate?
Just public transportation :)
@Understanding Train Station ... and there was me expecting accounts on culture shocks in the Netherlands from Josh ...
TBH I seem to have misread some other info as well.
... getting older and as a consequence seemingly more confused ...
Isn't that a NS Koploper ICM? I love the Koploper and hoped it would be somehow mentioned in the conservation.
Had a bunch of colleagues who attended ICF in that nightclub, and we also still supply coffee to their café.
Per Statistica, the percentage of Americans who have iPhones is 49% as of 2022. I have an Android phone and use SMS and WhatsApp with family and friends in the US and overseas, and am in groups with a mix of IPhones and Androids in both apps. In a large corporate work setting, it seemed that most people used Android phones.
Don't live in Germany anymore, but hey while I'm here let's just do all these check ups and niceties that in the US would cost me a fortune.
All of those little boxy US mail trucks were made around 1986-1988 by Grummen, the aircraft manufacturer, so they are all old. Cincinnati is a drivable city? Whenever I've driven there it's been an absolute headache, completely chaotic and disorganised. Messaging... for me it's either a standard text meesage or Facebook messenger. `
I mean if you compare it to a rural area in the US, I'm sure it can get stressful. But compared to any European city, it's very driveable, meaning you can easily drive downtown (even with a bigger car), you can usually find parking all over the city, and places like restaurants, movie theaters, etc. usually have their own parking lot.
Ein Kanaldeckel dürfte ein "manhole" (eigentlich keine Abflußeigenschaften) sein, aber ein Gully (wo das Regenwasser abgeführt wird), dürfte doch eher als "drain" übersetzt werden, oder? 🤔
Vielleicht ist das regional unterschiedlich, aber keiner den ich kenne unterscheidet zwischen Kanaldeckeln und Abläufen für Regenwasser, wir sagen einfach generell Gully.
Servus griast eich :)
Oh ich liebe eure Kanäle. Ist wirklich sehr interessant wie unterschiedlich doch die Staaten und wir in Deutschland leben.
Macht weiter so :)
Ein großes Danke an euch beide... Beim zuhören kann ich auch meine Englisch Kenntnisse verbessern :)
@1:07:40 I never heard of celery roots and just googled it! If celery root + peanut butter is really good, I wonder if celery root + nutella is really good too! lmao!
SMS is the best communication method ever. If anything works it does. It is outrageous to require everyone to use a private service like Whatsapp (and usually Germans are SO against giving up their privacy!)
Regarding geography, it has been interesting how our exchange students from Germany seem to have no concept of direction. Here in rural America north, south, east, and west are simply and integral part of life even at a young age.
I don't know what it's like at your place. But from what I have seen, in many US towns the roads form a rectangular grid, and the directions north, east, south and west can be found on signposts. That makes them easy to learn and to use as references. Here in Europe, the street grids are more randomly shaped, and people memorize directions rather by the place a road leads to. E.g. inward/outward of town, towards the neighboring place X, etc.
@Alex J We don't really have directions on signposts, but yes, here in the midwest, our roads are practically all set out north/south and east/west.
I agree about the us centric comment.... even as a canadian travelling to the USA, we notice it too....
It's totally different to have "strong public transportation" when your country is the size of a state, and the population density of the entire country is higher than many cities here.
The whole of Europe has a fairly good rail network.🤔 Some Countries better, like Switzerland, some less.
That doesn't explain why your urban areas do not have acceptable public transportation.
Btw., the US used to have a really good train network that connected most of the country. It was just abolished, because cars would get more returns on spending.
The US being bigger and less densely populated is just a lame excuse. You don't need an extremely dense network all across the country, just within cities would be a huge improvement already. But even that doesn't seem to catch on in the US.
Europe (not the EU) as a whole is bigger than the USA. Some countries have better public transport some are not that great, but as a whole it is still decades ahead of the USA.
@DanVibes it is also much more densely populated.
There is no way to make passenger trains economically viable in much of the US where there's maybe 5 people per square mile. Driving just makes far more sense. In much of the west even school bus routes are done with a van or SUV. When you have to drive 100 miles to get 15 students there's no point to trying to get 66 in one trip.
I pay my rent by cheque....but it's the only thing I've used a cheque for in 20 years
Sorry, but i do have to comment on the personal space topic. I do apologize in the supermarket or elsewhere when i accidentally bump into someone, but then again i don‘t live in a big city 😊
In many cases in the US, the doctor will even circumcise male babies without even asking the parents.
How about a family behind bmw? That's a good conversation. There's plenty of Germans hiding here in the Midwest. That would be more honest than talking about poop.
Well, I'm still using SMS with family and friends.
Komischerweise hört sich Josh an wie ein Deutscher der (fließend) Englisch spricht. Geht das nur mir so?
Nein, klingt für mich auch so. Ist aber eher mein Eindruck von Aufnahmen in denen er Deutsch spricht, nicht dass das Deutsche auf sein Englisch abgefärbt hätte (Aber vielleicht fällt mir das auch nicht auf.). Scheint einfach sprachbegabt zu sein.
Das Geheimnis heißt: Abstellgenehmigung
Ngl.. But as a North German I demand 1,5m personal space! That's seen as polite here
Americans are taught to not talk about religion and politics
re circumcision - is usually for sanitation. not custom.
Strangely enough, I think the closest I have been to any kind of terrorist activity was in Munich.
You mean the mall shooting in 2016?
@Understanding Train Station I don't recall what it was called. It was near BMW and the Olympic park and happened not long after we were there.
Okay, who is looking at guys' perinkies to learn that they got circumcised?
There are statistics about it
I think ordering bead with „Ich krieg oder ich bekomme„ is kinda rude
La Condesa ist auch ein guter Mexikaner in München. An der Münchner Freiheit oder Implerstraße.
Muss ich mal probieren. Markt Schwaben ist mir dann doch etwas zu weit draußen. Habe halt kein Auto, und mit der S-Bahn (umsteigen...) ist es eine halbe Weltreise.
Ja genau, das Restaurant haben wir auch schon öfter erwähnt! :)
Neuerdings (?) haben die auch eine Filiale am Bahnhofsplatz. Schön zentral gelegen.
Manhole LOL what a word for a gully. New vocab learned yaaay
Usage notes (from Wiktionary): In contexts such as government documents where anything that might be perceived as sexist is avoided, "manhole" has mostly been replaced by "maintenance hole".
What is the advantage of using whatsapp compared to just using sms?
A lot of people use Androids here in Europe, whatsapp works on pretty much any phone. I am also not sure if I can make groups with SMS, never tried. Also sending pictures etc was definitely easier and cheaper with whatsapp in the past. And a big advantage is that it does not cost more to message internationally. If I send a SMS to a foreign number, I am pretty sure I have to pay extra and with pictures etc I am sure it gets expensive fast.
WhatsApp is free.
SMS for a long time wasn't (and to a certain extent still isn't) free in Germany, and those data plans that offered unlimited SMS were usually expensive. So, as soon as WhatsApp came about, people jumped ships and never looked back.
One big reason is probably also that the standard SMS app on pretty much all phones except iPhones is very rudimentary. There simply isn't anything similar to iMessage on non-Apple devices. SMS apps are just that, an app that you can send texts with. No Gifs, no funny reactions, no stickers, nothing. Just text messages, audio messages and pictures. Audios and pictures are sent via MMS, which isn't included in every data plan, so it can be expensive.
So, if you want a proper messaging app with all the standard features that are pretty much expected nowadays, texting is not really an option when you don't have iMessage.
@plcwboy I guess SMS has caught up in a lot of ways. I am still not sure though if my plan covers sending pictures.
And I still would not want to switch to SMS because my plan definitely does not cover sending messages to foreign numbers.
And again i see the huge differences between southgermany, and the North!
Sadly many Americans move to Germany, mostly in the South, because the high american influence.
And then talk about, "in Germany is...","the Germans are..."!
Most of the "typical german habits", from american Clip-Sharers, i never heard/experienced... 🤷🏼♂️
But I am just a Fischkopp...
For me, USA and Southwest-Germany have much more in common, than the USA and North-Germany and/or specifically the former GDR!
But still every time interesting, entertaining Storys!
Ihr könnt ja nix dafür... 😜✌🏼
Feel free to let us know about things you experience differently in the North! :)
I spent about 3 months in Hamburg for an internship and Josh has traveled to a lot of places all over Germany and also lived in Erfurt temporarily and I guess for the things we mentioned in this episode, we didn't really notice huge regional differences within Germany.
But of course, all of the things we talk about on the podcast are generalizations to a certain extent and it's always implied that everyone has different experiences and that there are lots of regional differences within Germany as well as between rural and urban areas in general.
My German friend abandoned WhatsApp after it was bought by Facebook. He uses Threema and loves it.
On friendliness and customer service:
Germans just get used to that being a bit disfunctional here.
As an example I've appended a link to an episode of a series of comedy of the radio station SWR3.
"Höllentrip bei Feinkostzipp" (clip-share.net/video/WgaLEjeINo4/video.html)
... please mind it's quite strong accent.
"Höllentrip..." - oh, the memories of the 90s 😃