The United States is a country with a significant number of customs, some of them own and others acquired from other cultures. In this article, we talk about the most important traditions that exist in the country, as well as the behavior of its inhabitants.
Below you have an index with all the points that we are going to deal with in this article.
Christmas and New Year
Christmas is quite an important time in the United States, as the majority of the population is Christian. It is common to decorate the houses and mount a Christmas tree, which is usually natural, around which the gifts are left.
The streets are also filled with lights and a tree is put up in the most important places. Therefore, as we can see in this article, in this country we find some of the most impressive Christmas trees in the world: The most original Christmas trees in the world.
Traditionally, the person in charge of bringing gifts to the little ones is Santa Claus, known in other countries as Papai Noel. It goes down the chimney of the houses during the night of December 24.
The gifts are not opened that night, but on December 25 in the morning. To find out if the children have behaved well, a Santa Claus elf observes from a shelf: it is the so-called The elf on the shelf.
Also, to celebrate the new year, large parties are organized that last all night. One of the most iconic places to meet on December 31 is Times Square, in NY, where a crystal ball goes down while the assistants count down until the new year.
Halloween is celebrated on the night of October 31. It is a tradition that the Irish brought to the country in the XNUMXth century and that today has become popular around the world.
The houses are decorated with a theme of fear and mystery. You can not miss the pumpkins, that are emptied and carved with dark faces.
The children go dressed up from house to house and pronounce the phrase Trick or treat, Meaning Trick or Treating. After this, the people who have opened the door usually give them sweets. If they don't, the kids may be up to mischief.
This date coincides with some important festivals in other countries, such as the Day of the Dead in Mexico, which you can learn more about in this article: The most important customs of Mexico.
Easter marks the end of Holy Week, although today it is a cross between a religious and a secular tradition. The custom that attracts the most attention is the one practiced on Easter Sunday.
This day the call is made easter egg hunt, in which the protagonist is the Easter rabbit. Eggs are hidden in an area and the children have to look for them. Even in the White House, residence of the President of the United States, it is organized. In this way, the little ones live a unique experience.
The United States is one of the countries in which the highest percentage of marriages are found, since the wedding is a fairly popular and widespread event among couples.
These are held in various places, including the church, a beach or a garden. The ceremony can be civil or religious, and it is usually attended by family and friends of the couple.
During the banquet, a large wedding cake is brought out for the couple to cut. It is typical for the godfather and godmother to make a funny and emotional speech. Likewise, the bride throws her bouquet of flowers to women still single and, whoever takes it, is supposed to be the next to marry. After the banquet, the new marriage goes on a honeymoon trip.
Another original way of getting married that is quite widespread in the country is to go to Las Vegas, Nevada, where themed marriages are made in small chapels.
Thanksgiving or Thanksgiving Day It's one of the most family-friendly parties in America. It is celebrated on the fourth Thursday in November and has centuries of history.
In it, the family gathers to eat a succulent stuffed turkey. A prayer is made and thanks are given for what one has. In Manhattan NY, a great parade is organized in which the giant balloons stand out.
In the United States there is a great cultural diversity, so the uses and customs vary a lot. However, strangers are usually greeted with the hand and smiling, and friends with kisses or hugs.
When addressing someone trying to show respect, the word Miss o mister (Mrs o Sir) followed by the person's last name. When having a conversation, you have to leave adequate personal space.
Americans are quite punctual and if you are late it is common to notify. If you are invited to a house, it is well seen to bring a gift such as a bottle of wine, a sweet or flowers.
Día de la Independencia
On July 4, one of the most popular and important holidays in the country is celebrated: Independence Day. This commemorates the signing of the Declaration of Independence in 1776, with which the United States ceased to be a British colony.
During this day, parades are held in large cities and various events are organized. In addition, you can not miss the Fireworks. It is a national holiday.
When a person passes away, it is common to visit the people close to them and sign a book. If a family member or friend cannot go, send flowers. The latter is not done at Jewish burials.
The funeral can be in a house or in a church. Sometimes friends or family say a few words about the person. Afterwards, there is a procession to the place of burial.
After the funeral, the assistants will all eat together some dishes that the relatives usually prepare. This custom is quite strange for foreign people from countries like Spain or Argentina.
The eating habits of Americans are not very healthy, since they tend to consume fast food such as hamburger, pizza or fried chicken. This is a bad habit that people try to avoid more and more.
It is typical to go out to eat at a restaurant. In them, the portions are quite large. When finished, it is common to leave a tip of around 15%, since the service is not included in the price.
When it comes to cooking, the foods most commonly used are potatoes, pasta and rice. On the other hand, alcoholic beverages are only allowed to those over 21 years old.
Young people in the United States have diverse behaviors characteristic of their culture. For example, they like to have big parties in their own homes more than go out to discos.
In high school, one of the most important events is the dance called Prom. In it, they go as a couple and the clothes are quite formal: the girls wear dresses and the boys wear suits. Another date that is celebrated is Valentine's Day, in which, through a messaging service, teenagers often exchange cards and gifts.
Unlike most countries, Americans start driving at age 16. However, they have some restrictions until they reach a more mature age.
When it comes to doing business, people in America are pretty punctual. People are greeted with a handshake and formal dress is worn.
The negotiations are quite direct and fast. It is important to have prior information about the company you are going to deal with, as well as not to talk about some topics such as politics or religion.
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