Americans’ shocked reaction to facts about life in Britain caught on camera
A video interview in which an American responds to learning about aspects of life in the UK shows that for US citizens, the grass really is greener on the other side – on the other side of the Atlantic – in many ways.
She’s amazed to hear that ambulance trips in the UK are free, the country’s 52-week maternity benefit, its generous sick-day schemes and more.
The American on the receiving end of the surprises is Emily, Kalyn Franke’s best friend, who runs GirlGoneLondon.coma resource about traveling to or relocating to the UK.
The American at the end of the surprises is Emily (left), best friend of Kalyn Franke (right), who runs GirlGoneLondon.com, a resource about traveling and relocating to the UK
Kalyn relocated to the UK and now full-time produces blogs, videos and online courses about life in the country
Kalyn, 30, and Emily, 27, are both from Florida but Kalyn moved to the UK ten years ago and now full-time produces blogs, videos and online courses about life in the country.
Kalyn now has insider knowledge of the UK – and in the video, she updates Emily on the situation and the social perks that Brits enjoy.
She questions them about British factsthen observes their stunned reactions to the answers.
So spoiler alert — she gets them all wrong. But Kalyn points out that she “was very brave to take the quiz on camera.” After all, she’s only visited the UK a couple of times, we learn.
The first question is “How many nations does the United Kingdom consist of?”
“Oh god,” comes the reply.
Kalyn offers a prompt by asking her which two countries in Britain she visited first.
Emily, who lives in Miami, says, “England and Scotland.” But then she’s at a loss.
‘What is the other thing that is on the same landmass that we haven’t gone to?’ asks Kalyn.
Emily says: “Ireland [wrong]…Wales… [correct]’
And the fourth? Kalyn has to whisper the answer – “Northern Ireland”.
Next, Emily is asked how much an ambulance ride costs in the UK. Estimating £200, she is amazed to learn they cost nothing.
She says: “I’m shocked. Here we select our own cars. You can have your arm cut off and we’ll say, ‘No, we’ve got it, I’ll take the Honda [to hospital]”.”
Emily is asked how much an ambulance ride costs in the UK. Estimating £200, she is amazed to learn they cost nothing
Emily’s home state of Florida doesn’t have a personal income tax (she brings in money through sales taxes), so she’s understandably shocked to learn that the lowest income tax bracket in the UK is 20 percent [for those earning £12,571 to £50,270].
She thought it was five percent.
How many sick days do employees have in the UK?
Emily explains that Florida employees get three weeks off a year and they have to deduct vacation and sick days from that.
She estimates workers in the UK are on sick leave for two weeks.
When Kalyn tells her it’s ‘fundamentally unlimited’ [UK residents get 28 weeks of sick pay, but there’s no legal limit on sick days per year]she is understandably frightened.
Emily’s home state of Florida doesn’t have a personal income tax (she brings in money through sales taxes), so she was understandably shocked to learn that the lowest income tax bracket in the UK is 20 percent
Emily says, “In the US, you could get the flu and still have to send those emails.”
And what about the vacation days prescribed by the state?
In the US, you could get the flu and still need to issue those emails
“Maybe like 20?” asks Emily.
Close. Kalyn tells her it’s actually 28 days, which may include holidays.
“This is crazy,” says Emily. “We’ll be lucky if we get a week.”
Hearing that UK maternity leave is 52 weeks [it’s paid for up to 39 weeks] is the next shock.
Emily estimated “four weeks” and jokes that “in America we take care of ourselves.”
Eventually, Kalyn asks her what an allotment is (and admits to MailOnline Travel that she thought she had no idea about the term).
“Is it something to do with time at your job?” Emily replies.
It’s a good answer, Kalyn says, but lets her know it’s a garden plot that you buy or rent.
So a good place to grow more of that green grass.
For more information on Kalyn, see GirlGoneLondon.com and www.youtube.com/c/GirlGoneLondonofficial.