SAY WHAT? Top 10 English to North American Translations

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This is the essential run down of common language errors Brits make on their trips across The Pond! Check it out to make sure you don’t sound like a ‘jerk!’

1. Route and Route
Although both spelt the same, when using this word in the States or Canada be sure to pronounce it ‘r – out’ rather than the English sounding ‘root’ as you will never find the directions to anywhere.

2. Aubergine and Eggplant
Upon hearing eggplant most Brit’s would respond with a look of deep confusion. However fear not as ‘eggplant’ refers to what Brits would call an ‘aubergine’. This is an ever more appealing vegetable usually seen in Italian menus and the occasional vegetarian curry. Be sure to get your fill of ‘eggplant’ to ensure you receive your 5 a day targets!

3. Pants and Trousers
If some one comments on your ‘pants’ while in North America, don’t worry you haven’t walked outside without trousers on. ‘Pants’ and ‘trousers’ share the same meaning over there. So while you’re there, you can happily step outside wearing just your ‘pants’ and a t-shirt.


4. Trainers and Sneakers
If you’re looking to spend some of your hard earned dollars on a brand new pair of footwear while you are away, most shop assistants will laugh you out of the shop if you ask for a pair of ‘trainers’. Instead you must remember to ask for your size (US/CAN is usually one higher than UK sizes) in your favourite ‘sneakers’.

5. Crisps and Chips
Looking for your favourite salt and vinegar Walkers crisps in the US/CAN? You'll need to look for a brand called Lays potato chips, and you will find a whole new variety of flavoured ‘chips’ can also be accessorised with a new assortment of dips to enhance your chip/crisp experience.

6. Bacon!
Bacon is spelt and pronounced the same in North America and the UK, however the taste and look is completely different. Trying to find the traditional bacon buttie with HP sauce across the pond may prove difficult; instead you will be confronted with ‘streaky’ bacon on the verge of being burnt to a crisp accompanied with pancakes and syrup (maple no doubt if in Canada). But fear not, pancakes definitely make up for the differences.

7. Mobile and Cell-Phone
While you’re in US/CAN you will undoubtedly make numerous new friends, and will need to contact them by other means than merely Facebook. However when you go to exchange ‘mobile’ numbers, do not be surprised as your new friend takes out his ‘cell phone’ as both of these will be compatible when trying to call one another.

8. Rubbish and Trash
When you are looking to discard your used goods while in the states, looking for a ‘rubbish bin’ will be futile. However, finding a ‘trash can’ will be far easier to come by and will be equally as successful at disposing of your rubbish/trash.

9. Toilet and Restroom
Trying to find the ‘toilet’ when you are desperate can be made far more difficult if the local person you are asking doesn’t know what you mean. Therefore in order to avoid embarrassment be sure to request the nearest ‘restroom’ during your time in North America.

10. CV and Resume
This translation is very important for successfully bagging your dream job abroad. A ‘CV’ in the UK is usually a document of 2 pages, detailing your past work and personal accomplishments for the attention of a potential employer. A ‘CV’ in the U.S.A or Canada is something very similar but is a more in depth appraisal of literally every achievement you have accomplished in your working and personal life, so usually exceeds the 2 page expectation in Britain. However the British ‘CV’ instead resembles that of the North American ‘Resume’, but when applying for your dream job be sure to entitle your document ‘Resume’, rather than CV.

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