• Travel Guide

    Travel Guide | United States Of America

    The U.S. is a country of 50 states covering a vast swath of North America, with Alaska in the northwest and Hawaii extending the nation’s presence into the Pacific Ocean. Major Atlantic Coast cities are New York, a global finance and culture center, and capital Washington, DC. Midwestern metropolis Chicago is known for influential architecture and on the west coast, Los Angeles’ Hollywood is famed for filmmaking.

    I visited America quite a long time ago back in 2009, visiting New York and Orlando in Florida and I am dying to go back again. I’d love to visit the United States of America again and see more of what America has to offer, especially their national parks and the Cali coastline.

    Culture

    CURRENCY

    In America they use US Dollars. You can either cards or cash and notes across America to pay for items.

    Top Tip:
    Download the app “Currency Plus” to get currency conversions on the go. It updates daily and when connected to WiFi or Network to give you the latest conversion and you can have multiple currencies shown in one go.

    Download here: Apple App Store // Google Play Store

    LANGUAGE

    In America they speak American English and have their own ways of saying certain words. I have put some popular slang ways of saying words below. On the left is the common English way of saying words and on the right is the American way of saying it.

    • Bin – Trashcan
    • Path/Footpath – Sidewalk
    • Crossing the road not at a crossing – Jaywalking
    • Crisps – Chips
    • Chips – Fries
    • Jelly – Jello
    • Jam – Jelly
    • Football – Soccer
    TIMEZONE

    The timezones in America vary across each state. Their time difference can range from -5 to -10 to the UK depending on what state you are visiting. I have put some examples of the different timezones below.

    15:105 hours behindEastern Standard Time – Washington DC
    14:106 hours behindCentral Standard Time – Chicago
    13:107 hours behindMountain Standard Time – Phoenix or Denver
    12:108 hours behindPacific Standard Time – Los Angeles
    11:109 hours behindAlaska Standard Time – Anchorage
    10:1010 hours behindHawaii-Aleutian Standard Time – Honolulu
    CUISINE

    In America they do not have a set cuisine. They cater for many cultures and cuisines throughout the country. If you order any American food, it will come at least double what you are expecting it to be. Their portion sizes are huge. There is no such thing as a small salad. They are best known for their burgers, ribs, doughnuts, milkshakes, cheesecakes and other fast food.


    Budget Tips

    Suggested Daily Budget – EUR / 224-230 GBP (Note: This is a suggested daily budget assuming you’re staying in a hostel and eating out very little or budget food chains. Using the budget tips below, you can lower this number and keep your spending to a limit. However, if you stay in fancier accommodation and eat out more often, expect this daily budget to be higher.)

    01. Book motels if you don’t mind saving some money but comprimising on quality – If you don’t mind not staying in a luxury hotel chain, booking motels is a great way of saving some much needed cash, especially if you are on a road trip around America or the national parks.

    02. Eat at budget chains such as Applebee’s or Subway – If you want to eat out but are on a budget, there are plenty of budget food chains that have amazing deals on to help you save money when you eat out. A lot of the fast food chains around America are down every major street. Subway in America have a great deal for a footlong sub for $5.

    03. Take advantage of the FREE attractions – America are quite good when it comes to free attraction entries. Quite a lot of the museums and other tourist attractions have free entry, this excludes sport venues, national parks and theme parks.

    04. Use bus or train transport – Using public transport is the best way of getting around America but using their public buses and trains are so much cheaper than opting for a taxi or Uber.


    Travel Tips

    VISAS

    You will need a visa to visit America, and it’s all dependant on where you are from. You can find out if you require a visa by visiting the website www.esta.cbp.dhs.gov. You can also buy your visa as soon as you arrive in the airports but you can’t always guarantee it will be easy.

    INJECTIONS

    You do not need any injections to visit America.

    CAPITAL/CITY

    The capital of America/USA is Washington DC, quite often mistaken for New York City. Although New York City is their biggest city, it’s not their capital. Other cities in America including Los Angeles, Miami, Detroit, Seattle, Chicago, San Francisco and many more.

    ACCOMMODATION

    There is a wide varity of accommodation across America – whether it’s a hotel, AirBnB or a motel (more expensive version of a hostel). You can find lots of accommodation by searching Skyscanner, TripAdvisor (using Agoda for the best rates) or AirBnB (if you use my AirBnB link, you can get £34 off your first booking).

    ACCOMMODATION I’VE STAYED IN

    united states of america

    Explore America

    New York | Florida

    DRIVING

    We drove in Florida which was really easy to get around and drive. They do drive on the otherside of the road compared to the UK and Europe and the driverseat is on the left hand side of the car. There are plenty of car hire companies across the states and at airports so it’s really easy to pick up a car when you arrive or you can book your car online before you land.

    FLIGHTS

    It’s really easy to book flights to America, with so many airlines offering deals across the country. It’s best to shop around and find the best deal possible. Quite a few airlines will offer a layover deal when flying to the States but it does reduce the price of the flight a lot more, perfect if you don’t mind spending some time in the airport on the layover.

    PUBLIC TRANSPORT

    I didn’t use much public transport in America apart from a new times in New York. It’s so much cheaper using the trains and buses than booking taxis and Ubers.


    Packing Tips

    WHAT TO WEAR

    You can wear what you like in America depending on the weather. When we went to America we had to pack for two climates as it was very cold in New York and quite warm in Florida and this was in February.

    WEATHER

    The weather can be quite mixed in America with their winters being very cold and quite often it snows a lot and during their summer is will be really hot and amazing.

    UNITED STATES WEATHER


    Activities

    THINGS TO DO & SEE

    There are so many diffrent things to see and do across America, no matter what you are in to. If you love sport, I definitely recommend going to a basketball, baseball, American football or ice hockey match. The atmosphere is amazing at their games. There are so many shopping malls across America, so if you love shopping I recommend checking those out. They have so many FREE attractions and museums to attend so if you are looking to save money and find something to do, they are a good shout too.

    HIGHLIGHTS OF AMERICA

    • Empire State Buiding, New York
    • Chrysler Building, New York
    • Basketball match, New York
    • M&S Store, New York
    • Statue of Liberty, New York
    • Rockefeller Centre, New York
    • Central Park, New York
    • Times Square, New York
    • Build A Bear Store, New York
    • Ground Zero, New York
    • Disney, Florida
    • NASA Space Centre, Florida
    • Dolly Parton’s Dixie Stampead, Florida
    • Walt Disney World Park, Florida
    • Epcot Park, Florida
    • Busch Gardens, Florida
    • Downtown Disney, Florida
    • Cirque du Soleil, Downtown Disney in Florida

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    Travel Guide | United States Of America