Abroad and Aggravated: What Brits Find Irksome About Life Outside the UK

We’ve all been there, standing on foreign soil, eyeing something with suspicion and thinking, “This would never fly back home.” But, honestly, isn’t there just something irksome about how things are done outside of Blighty?

1. Coffee That Doesn’t Cut It

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Where’s the strong, robust tea we’re used to? Instead, we find ourselves sipping what might kindly be described as tinted water, longing for a proper brew.

2. The Dreaded Duvet Dilemma

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Single sheets and a blanket? Please. The lack of a proper duvet in many hotels outside the UK can make for a sleepless night, fussing about in inadequate bedding.

3. Flimsy Plastic Money

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Our sterling notes feel like they could survive a washing machine spin cycle. Handling the often flimsy plastic currency abroad leaves us worrying it might just fly away with the next gust of wind.

4. Traffic Mayhem

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Driving on the right aside, the apparent free-for-all on what passes for roads in some places can be a white-knuckle experience for the calmest of us.

5. Tap Water Roulette

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At home, a sip of water from the tap is a non-event. Abroad, it’s a gamble with your gut, where the odds are not always in your favour.

6. Card Payments? Not Everywhere

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The bewildering number of places that still don’t take card payments can leave us tapping our pockets for non-existent cash.

7. Air Conditioning or Lack Thereof

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We might grumble about the cold back home, but stepping into a hotel room abroad that lacks any form of air conditioning is a sweaty reminder of what we’re missing.

8. The Quest for Decent WiFi

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Hunting for WiFi that doesn’t drop out every five minutes can make you miss your reliable (ish) broadband back home.

9. A Proper Fry-up

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Breakfast abroad often means pastries and fruit—refreshing, yes, but sometimes you just yearn for the heartiness of a full English.

10. Supermarket Confusion

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Navigating a foreign supermarket can feel like an episode of “Crystal Maze,” deciphering labels and guessing at the contents.

11. Lack of Polite Queueing

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The disregard for queueing is practically an affront to British sensibilities. Chaos at the bus stop or in line at the cafe can be downright disconcerting.

12. Early Closing Hours

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Shops that close at 5 p.m.? Pubs that won’t serve you a pint past 10? It’s like the whole town has decided bedtime is nigh.

13. Excessive Friendliness

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The unbridled enthusiasm of shop clerks or casual acquaintances abroad can overwhelm us reserved Brits. A simple transaction shouldn’t feel like a friendship.

14. Beach Towel Battles

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The fight for a lounger by the pool can start at dawn. It’s a territorial battle that requires strategic planning and alarm setting.

15. Complicated Recycling Rules

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Back home, we’ve just got the hang of which plastics go where. Abroad, the recycling system can be a puzzling array of bins and rules.

16. Overly Sugary Snacks

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A quest for a simple biscuit can end in a sugar overload. Why must everything taste like it’s been dipped in syrup?

17. Icy Air Conditioning

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From sweltering streets to icebox interiors, the overzealous use of air conditioning in some countries can make you long for a mild British breeze.

18. The Myth of Spicy Food

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Ordering something ‘spicy’ and finding it milder than a British summer can be a letdown for those of us who pride ourselves on our curry credentials.

19. Pedestrian Peril

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The simple act of crossing the road shouldn’t feel like a life-risking act. Yet, in some places, it’s a dash of faith each time.

20. Casual Attire Everywhere

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The casual dress codes abroad can be a shock. A trip to the theatre shouldn’t look like a jaunt to the beach.

21. The Problem With Tea

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And finally, the grievance you knew was coming—tea abroad simply isn’t up to snuff. Whether it’s weak, strangely flavoured, or just served wrong, it’s a perennial thorn in the side of every tea-loving Brit abroad.

The Grass Isn’t Always Greener

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While we might grumble about the peculiarities we encounter abroad, these experiences make us appreciate home’s idiosyncrasies. Perhaps it’s not so bad to have things done the British way, even if it’s just for the comfort of what’s familiar.

The post Abroad and Aggravated: What Brits Find Irksome About Life Outside the UK first appeared on LoveLists.

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For transparency, this content was partly developed with AI assistance and carefully curated by an experienced editor to be informative and ensure accuracy.

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