Not many people traveled in 2020. The pandemic made things difficult, and many countries had full-blown lockdowns that made international travel almost impossible. Among other things, that meant many Americans could not come across the pond to visit merry old England.
In late 2021, most Americans feel safe traveling again, both within the country and outside of it. There are still some pandemic restrictions in place, but you can usually travel if you can show you’ve had the vaccine. You must also be willing to wear a facemask over your mouth and nose the whole time you’re on the plane.
That means the United Kingdom welcomes American visitors again in 2021. If you’re an American who decides to visit the UK this year or in 2022, you might decide that checking out an English pub is right up at the top of your to-do list.
There is much to recommend the English pub, but only if you follow proper British etiquette. We’ll talk a little about what that entails right now, so queue up and grab a pint for today’s lesson.
How to Get There
We’ll first talk about getting to the pub once you’ve arrived in the UK. You can rent a car if you’d like, but if you do that, remember that the vehicles drive on the left, instead of the right, as they do in the US. This can lead to some confusion if you’re not careful.
You can broadside another car if you don’t remember the British road rules. That will cause many problems for you, so you might want to consider catching cabs or taking public transportation instead. If you are exploring a major city, like London, you will find you can use the Underground, which the locals usually call The Tube.
Of course, if you’re out in the countryside, there is not likely to be public transportation, except maybe a bus that comes by once or twice per day. If you’re staying at a bed and breakfast in the country, that’s when you’ll probably need to rent a car, since you’ll have little alternative.
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Ordering a Pint
A proper beer in the UK comes in a pint glass. You’d hope the glass is clean, as it should be in a nice establishment.
You will probably notice that in England, the bartender will not serve you a beer ice cold. It might be a little cooler than room temperature. The English often feel that you cannot fully appreciate a beer’s flavor if it’s served as cold as some Americans prefer it.
You can likely expect to pay between 3 and 4 British pounds for a pint in the UK. It’s often a little more expensive in a big city like London, and a bit cheaper elsewhere.
What to Do While You Drink
If you want to sit for a spell and enjoy your pint, you might take the time to chat with some of the locals. If this pub is a big tourist spot, there might be individuals there from many different countries. If you’re out in the country, you’ll probably meet only individuals who live and work around there.
Some Americans don’t have the easiest time deciphering the British accent. There are different ones depending on where in the country you are, but most Brits do speak English, after a fashion. You should be able to understand each other, though you might lose a word or two in the shuffle.
You may talk about things like sports. Remember that the English call soccer football, so there might be a little confusion there if you’re not careful.
They are also very passionate about their teams, and they will probably lose no time in telling you all about how they’re doing. Tottenham, Manchester United, and Chelsea are some of the most prominent football clubs.
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You might also decide to play darts or billiards when you’re in the pub. It should not be too difficult to find someone to play with you. They might laugh at your skillset if you’re a complete amateur, but it’s all in good fun.
You should also remember to mind your p’s and q’s when you’re in the pub when you speak about certain subjects. Like any American bar, it’s best to avoid talking about politics or religion in mixed company. It’s probably best to steer away from talking about Brexit since some Brits have strong feelings about it.