Moving to the United States has so many perks, but it’s not all smooth sailing. Here are some things to look out for when you head across the seas.
We spoke to the experts at The Law Offices of Grant Kaplan about some of the more common adjustments South Africans who relocate to the United States need to make.
Most South Africans have enough exposure to American English to know that you will need to say ‘trunk’ instead of ‘boot’ and ‘faucet’ instead of ‘tap’, but there are some South Africanisms that are a little more difficult to shake from your vocabulary.
In the States, saying ‘just now’ or ‘lekker’ or ‘vrot’ will ensure you are met with blank stares. These words will need to be replaced with a more generic way of speaking, and it may even help to adopt some of the local slang.
Also, be sure to adjust how you say certain words. Sitting in a restaurant and ordering ‘wor-ter’ will need to be replaced with the ordering of water using the local accent.
This is an adjustment you’ll most likely enjoy making. Almost anything you want can be ordered online and will be delivered the next day, or two days later if you really have to wait long.
Shops are open a lot later than they are in South Africa, and things just become available to consumers with a whole lot more ease than back home.
Also read: 5 reasons why America is a great place to call home
This is another bonus. Reliable and safe public transport is such a big deal for South Africans, but is so normal to people living in the States. It makes life so much easier knowing you can get around quickly and safely.
This is one of the lesser-known adjustments that needs to be made. It is common for South Africans to assume that the United States functions in the same way as our provinces – a lot of parts making one whole.
In the USA, each state has its own rules and regulations and ways of doing things. This is sometimes difficult for South Africans to grasp, but should be considered when you are deciding which state to make your new home.
Also read: The five most expat-friendly cities in the US
Grant Kaplan is an Immigration lawyer based in Florida who has helped thousands of families and business people make the move into the States. The Law Offices of Grant Kaplan provide a full immigration service for all visa categories. Tel +1 561 347 8440 or email email@example.com