10 Everyday European Things That Feel Like Luxuries to Americans

As cultures differ across the globe, so do the perspectives on what constitutes a luxury. In the case of Europeans and Americans, there are certain things that Europeans possess and appreciate as everyday conveniences, while Americans may view them as luxurious. From public transportation systems to healthcare accessibility, these elements reflect the varying societal norms and priorities between the two regions.

1. Convenient Train Stations Across Europe

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Europe's train station accessibility left one user astounded during their visit. They were amazed by the convenience of having a train station nearby, no matter their location, even in remote farm villages. This made it incredibly easy for them to hop on a train and travel to any destination.

2. Luxurious Privacy in European Toilet Stalls

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Another user highlights the luxuriousness of floor-to-ceiling toilet stalls in Europe. They appreciate the privacy and seclusion it provides, sparing them from worrying about the neighboring cubicle's occupant and their shoes.

3. Insufficient Parental Leave in the U.S.

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Someone who shares their personal experience brings up the topic of paid parental leave. They expressed their dissatisfaction with the limited leave they received, having to return to work only six weeks after the birth of their second child. They contrast the treatment of working mothers to the care given to dogs, emphasizing the need for more robust leave and support programs.

4. Pedestrian-Friendly European Towns and Public Transit

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A person praises European towns for their pedestrian-friendly design and the efficient public transit system that allows easy travel between major cities and even across borders without relying on a car. They appreciate the convenience of walking or biking to key locations and the option to take the train instead of dealing with the delays and security procedures associated with air travel.

5. Inadequate Language Instruction in America

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Ineffective language instruction in American institutions is brought to attention by one commenter. They emphasize the importance of early language acquisition, particularly Spanish alongside English, and express admiration for European nations that effectively teach multiple languages.

6. Fresh and Local Produce in European Markets

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Individuals express their love for the nearby European markets that offer locally grown produce, bread, and fruits. They view regular grocery shopping for fresh foods as a benefit rather than a drawback, thanks to the availability of smaller refrigerators. They appreciate being able to plan meals around seasonal and readily accessible market offerings.

7. Affordable and Accessible Basic Healthcare in Europe

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Europe's healthcare system, which avoids pushing individuals into bankruptcy, is commended by a respondent. They appreciate the availability of basic healthcare without enduring lengthy procedures or financial hardships, in contrast to the situation in the United States.

8. Higher Quality and Cleaner European Cuisine

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A participant who believes that European food is cleaner, of higher quality, and contains fewer chemicals, preservatives, and additives, lauds the standards and quality of European cuisine. They note the stark differences in flavor and overall well-being after consuming European dishes and the prohibition of certain American food products from being imported into the European Union due to restricted substances.

9. Rich Historical Heritage of Europe

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The rich historical heritage of Europe catches the attention of another user in the thread, who appreciates the sense of grounding it provides. They express admiration for the existence of castles, historic churches, taverns, and the discoveries of Roman ruins beneath everyday buildings. They greatly respect Europeans' deep connections to history and the cultural value it imparts.

10. Cheap Coffee and Pastries

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“This is only really true for Southern Europe. But cheap wine by the glass, cheap coffee and pastries. Cafes in the US are marketed as very trendy and if you want a pastry and a coffee you should be ready to pay like 8-10 dollars. In most of Italy, Portugal and Spain you can get coffee and a croissant for like 3 euros,” one person pointed out.

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Gen Z or Gen Alpha can't even imagine doing those things, as it is way unacceptable in this era. Here are a few things Baby Boomers got away with but is a common thing today:

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