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General differences between Poland and the USA?


p3undone 8 | 1,135
18 Jan 2012  #1
I am an American and would love to learn about polish culture.I have family in Poland and I do plan on visiting at some point.

If anyone has lived in both countries,would you please explain in general the differences and similarities between the two.
jasondmzk
18 Jan 2012  #2
I've lived in both, but like you, as an American. First, lemme tell you, these folks don't have the same relationship with their car that Americans do. At least, not the sub-30 years olds that I knew. They HAD cars, but they were far more likely to walk, or take the tram, or walk to the tram, etc. Especially when they planned on drinking. I didn't know anyone who drank and drove as a rule, like here in the states. The roads are NOT that great. And by that, I mean they pretty much suck. Potholes, poor signage, and a lack of circumventing routs in Wroclaw in particular. Shopping is a bit different. People seem to buy what they need for a day, maybe one or two days, at a time, not for a whole month like they do here (America). Not a lotta canned items, either. The taxes are included in the ticketed price of things, which was kinda cool. The chicks are overwhelming attractive and physically fit. Maybe from all that walking? Most of the youngish people I was kicking it with knew English. They at least had a working knowledge of it, if not fluency. I'll stop, just in case this is the kind of minutia you could do without. If not, I got plenty more.
OP p3undone 8 | 1,135
18 Jan 2012  #3
No,that's cool keep it coming.
jasondmzk
18 Jan 2012  #4
My time was primarily spent in the southwestern part of the country, which has four distinct seasons, but the winters were particularly grueling. I mean, truly brutal. Then again, I'm from Alabama, so my perspective on brutal weather might be skewed. People there are friendly, but not as open as Americans. There's not a lot of "hi, how ya doing" to each other as they pass in the street, like we do, here. Good sense of humor, tho, very wry. And they might come across as somewhat cynical, but it appears as tho they truly want each other succeed, which isn't like American cynicism at all. Your dollar will go pretty far, there. About 3 and half zloty for every American dollar, which ain't half bad. They have KFC and Pizza Hut and McDonald's, aplenty; but are ya really gonna travel halfway across the globe to eat the same old crap? The malls are interesting, they have a little bit of everything, electronics stores, supermarkets, the whole nine yards. The shops are smaller, and instead of one security team for the whole mall, there's usually one security guy for each store, which is weird.
JonnyM 11 | 2,621
19 Jan 2012  #5
My time was primarily spent in the southwestern part of the country, which has four distinct seasons

Some say that central Poland has two seasons, some say it has six. I incline to the latter view. And przedwiosna (pre-spring) will start soon.

They have KFC and Pizza Hut and McDonald's, aplenty; but are ya really gonna travel halfway across the globe to eat the same old crap?

Exactly. The same rubbish almost everywhere nowadays, and stifles the post-communist evolution of Polish cheap restaurant food which isn't the best.

The shops are smaller, and instead of one security team for the whole mall, there's usually one security guy for each store, which is weird.

There must be more security guards per head in PL than almost anywhere else.
jasondmzk
19 Jan 2012  #6
I didn't explain about the dual "toalety", and how he's gonna have to pay for every one he uses outside of home, either.
JonnyM 11 | 2,621
19 Jan 2012  #7
Tell him to keep a MacDonalds receipt in his pocket and use theirs.
jasondmzk
19 Jan 2012  #9
Ain't a problem. If ya think of anything more specific ya wanna know, hit me up.
Wroclaw Boy
19 Jan 2012  #10
Most of the youngish people I was kicking it with knew English.

shame you dont, stop butchering our language - especially on a forum where English is the second language for many.

Ain't a problem. If ya think of anything more specific ya wanna know, hit me up.

^WTF^
bhollen76 - | 4
19 Jan 2012  #11
How about the living cost. how is it comparing to America ?
jasondmzk
20 Jan 2012  #12
Food costs are less, because you're not going to be buying a lot of pre-packaged bullcrap. Although, I do have an unwavering fondness for Pudliszki's products. pudliszki.pl = YUM! Note; when eating out, you aren't going to get endless refills of soda, like you do in America. Tipping isn't as percentage-crucial as in the U.S., because the servers in Europe are usually paid a living wage, not $2.15 an hour, like in America. Housing is slightly less, then in an American city of comparable size. I paid 600 pln a month for a room in a flat in an old soviet district. Gasoline is much more expensive, but the cars are almost all smaller-engined, more fuel efficient models. Unless it's a very, very modern dwelling, you aren't going to find all the electrical appliances, like dishwashers and stuff that you find in America, galore. Most apartments use radiators, which run on natural gas, and that tends to be a cheaper energy source than electricity.
bhollen76 - | 4
20 Jan 2012  #13
Is there any good book written about polish culture ?
jasondmzk
21 Jan 2012  #14
The one that first springs to mind; "Unquiet Days: At Home In Poland", by Thomas Swick. It's a memoir of an American's time spent in Poland during the emergent time of Solidarność. It's very good.
mochadot18 13 | 238
3 May 2013  #15
Merged: Differences between the U.S and Poland

What are all the differences between the U.S and Poland?
Monitor 14 | 1,821
3 May 2013  #17
Poland:
consume 77.47% less oil
use 73.07% less electricity
make 61.42% less money
spend 86.32% less money on health care
have 27.4% less babies
experience 22.44% less of a class divide
die 2.39 years sooner
have 8.47% more chance of dying in infancy
be 83.33% less likely to have HIV/AIDS
work 7.96% more hours each year
have 4.3% more chance at being employed

ifitweremyhome.com/compare/US/PL

Consumer Prices in United States are 48.75% higher than in Poland
Consumer Prices Including Rent in United States are 59.51% higher than in Poland
Rent Prices in United States are 91.91% higher than in Poland
Restaurant Prices in United States are 60.23% higher than in Poland
Groceries Prices in United States are 79.89% higher than in Poland
Local Purchasing Power in United States is 151.57% higher than in Poland

numbeo.com/cost-of-living/compare_countries_result.jsp?country1=Poland&country2=United+States

is it a joke ?
pam
3 May 2013  #18
What are all the differences between the U.S and Poland?

I think you need to be a bit more specific so we can help you!
Bassem - | 22
3 May 2013  #19
Poland located in Continent of Europe , US in Continent of north america :D
mochadot18 13 | 238
6 May 2013  #20
is it a joke ?

Haha I just wanted to see what people would come up with.

I think you need to be a bit more specific so we can help you!

I'm looking for anything, like what are the differences between the education systems (university). What about the differences in food? Differences in living? I want to know about whatever you think are differences that you think are important. Personally i'll go to Poland for senior year in college so 2 years so the education differences would be nice.
Monitor 14 | 1,821
6 May 2013  #21
then the most important is that Poland is poorer, so infrastructure and houses are not so good quality, people go less to restaurants. 2nd most important difference is the same as USA vs Europe. Poland as European country has more expensive gasoline, less people commute to work by car and more people use public transport in the cities. Cities are designed for pedestrian not for cars. 3rd most important is that people are more closed. We don't speak to strangers, we don't say "How are you" every time we see acquaintance. But when you become part of group then we are honest in sense that we say what we think and don't keep political correctness. We also tend to complain about stuff for entertainment. 4th would be less foreigners and more homogenous race in Poland. We don't have many people from Africa or southern America. 5th would be lower tolerance of especially older people. ( don't tolerate different people, not Catholics, not straight )

I don't see any other important differences, but there must be some
myrat 1 | 1
7 May 2013  #24
Us is larger than Poland; further, US is in North-American but Poland is in west -European.
Rysavy 10 | 308
7 May 2013  #25
We Americans are sedated- innudated- overated and heavily armed?

Seriously though... aside from the obvious multi ethnic population?

Infrastructure I would say is a big one. We had a very advanced and huge( for the time especially) roads and communication system put in "just in case of next war" to move equipment and units from East-West quickly. Engineers reshaped whole landscapes-removed mtns where they were in the way: added mtns when needed.

And the Interstate system gave birth to rapid expansion of corridor areas and a very mobile society.

Individualist tendencies written in the stone of our Constitution would be another large difference

Our domestic beer is kinderbier anywhere else
pierogi2000 4 | 229
7 May 2013  #26
Poles do seem to have an unhealthy infatuation with USA. For example in terms of Pop culture, a lot of ''wiggers'' in Poland.
delphiandomine 84 | 17,703
7 May 2013  #27
Not really. Much of what goes on has been distinctly Polonised.
pierogi2000 4 | 229
7 May 2013  #28
For example. This video was made as a school project in a upper middle class predominately white high school. Rap culture is rotting American culture from the inside. 33 students were suspended, no prom, no walking at graduation

youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=HvD5_T7aUCk
delphiandomine 84 | 17,703
7 May 2013  #29
Hard to see what's wrong with the video.

Isn't America supposed to be the Land Of The Free? Seems that it's more "Land Of The Oppressed".
pierogi2000 4 | 229
7 May 2013  #30
Whoa really. You'd allow your daughter or girlfriend to be in that video


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