Miami Dolphins fans heading to London: What you need to know

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Nov 9, 2014; London, UNITED KINGDOM; Fans arrive on Olympic Way from the Wembley Park underground station before the NFL International Series game between the Dallas Cowboys and the Jacksonville Jaguars at Wembley Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

While North America was “discovered” and colonized by the British, time has erased many of the similarities. Cultural difference between the two countries exist today as with all countries. You however are visiting London and are a guest in their country. Understanding some of the cultural differences will make your stay that much more enjoyable.

There are over 7.5 million people in London so you can expect to get a huge dose of London hospitality and you will get what you give tenfold.

Yes, they do indeed drive on the opposite of U.S. streets. If you are driving be mindful of your right turns becoming similar to left turns and left turns like right turns. Don’t panic over the tight roads and fast paces. Watch for pedestrians and try not to get lost looking around at the sites. Park and go enjoy them.

While you may be enamored with the British accents remember to them you have the accent. Whether you are from upstate New York or rural Alabama or even Miami, Florida, you have an accent that you likely are not aware of. It’s a very good chance that by the end of your stay you will grow tired of hearing, “Where are you from?”. They want to know so tell them. Be polite and share your life with them. Just don’t get too personal, Londoners are far more reserved and TMI can be off-putting. Britain’s tend to keep their personal lives private so unless asked, don’t spill too much as it can come across arrogant.

Despite the hustle, Londoners are mostly laid back and relaxed. During work hours they may seem to be standoffish but they have jobs too and are not on “holiday” or vacation as we call it, like you are. There is no need to avoid those in business attire but you are far more likely to get assistance from the casually dressed. Jeans and sweaters are common so try and fit in.

Lines are called “queues” and you will find yourself standing in them a lot. The British don’t care for rude people so don’t try and cut in line. If you make a mistake and inadvertently get the end of the line wrong, simply apologize and ask where the end of the “queue” is.

There is no racial discrimination in the U.K., at least not much. The U.K. has a lot of immigrants from the Caribbean and it has been that way for centuries so don’t think that how someone treats you is because of your skin color or lack of. Britain’s are very welcoming and many I have met love meeting foreigners who visit their country and show respect towards it.

Britain’s have a very different sense of humor that Americans do. They tend to be far more sarcastic in their humor and mean you no disrespect by that. Conversely don’t be surprised if your dry sense of humor is lost on their ears. They won’t get your humor as much as you won’t get theirs.

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