10 things I’ve learned about Brussels

After the first few days in Brussels, I would like to point out some cultural differences.

  1. People here aren’t very smiley and nice (this might just be a larger city thing, but I’m not sure)
  2. People wear mostly just black (my pink Express work shirts stick out like a sore thumb)
  3. You have to pay for water at restaurants AND beer is typically as cheap as water (so naturally, we just order beer)
  4. The workplace is so much more laid-back (my boss wanted to buy us beers in the middle of the workday)
  5. They will not separate checks (so request small bills when you go to the ATM)
  6. Stores close so early (no joke, they’re out of there by 6)
  7. They go out way later than we do (if you leave a bar before 1 a.m. you didn’t even see the peak of the night)
  8. Men are chauvinist pigs (and we thought frat guys were disrespectful….)
  9. Belgium has some of the highest taxes in the world, so employers all buy their employees expensive cars so that they don’t have to pay that money in taxes (so it’s safe to say Belgians like their cars)
  10. This is a city with so many cultures! Everyone here is from all over the world. It truly is an international city and it’s amazing. Everyone I meet has a great story to tell.

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