Name: United States, or USA, or U.S. (long form) United Sates of America. American is named after the Italian explorer, Amerigo Vespucci
Capital City: Washington, D.C
National Independence Day: July 4, 1776
Motto: In God We Trust
Largest Cities: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Antonio, San Diego, Dallas, San Jose
Border Countries and Oceans: Canada, Mexico, Atlantic Ocean, Gulf of Mexico, Pacific Ocean
Land Area: 3,615,123 sq. mi. (9,375,720 sq. km.)
Highest Point: Mt. McKinley, Alaska, 20,320 ft. (6194 m.) above sea level
Lowest Point: Death Valley, California, 282 ft (86 m.) below sea level
Largest State: Alaska
Smallest State: Rhode Island
Official Religion: Christianity (Protestant 52%, Catholic 24%)
Currency: US Dollar (US$)
Political System: Constitution-based federal republic
National Bird: Bald Eagle
National Flower: Rose
National Anthem: The Star-Spangled Banner
National Sport: Baseball
Economy: Agriculture, Forestry, Fishing, Manufacturing, Mining, Construction
International Dialing Code: +1
Electricity: 110-120V 60Hz (don’t forget to pack an AC and plug adapter – the U.S. uses electrical plugs with two flat parallel blades)
Weights & Measures: Imperial
Time Zones: GMT/UTC-5 (Eastern)
GMT/UTC-8 (Pacific Standard)
Tipping: Customary for service industry professionals - usually 15 percent of the total bill – 20 percent or more for exceptional service. Tip coatroom attendants $1 per garment; parking valets $1-2 when you drop off your car and another $1-2 when you pick it up; hotel porters and airport skycaps at least $1 per bag; and hotel chambermaids $3-5 a day.
- The national language of the United States is English. Not many Americans speak another language.
- If they do speak another language, such as in pockets in the central states where small communities speak German or one of the Scandinavian languages, or people living or working along the U.S. border with eastern Canada, where French may be a second language for some, they will almost always speak English too.
- But in general, it’s an English-only country - the one exception being along the southern U.S. border from California to Texas that where are communities where Spanish is the first language, and some residents may not speak any English. Also in those areas, many native English speakers know a fair amount of Spanish.
- Therefore, it’s probably essential that you (or someone in your motorhome traveling group) speak English. There are obviously exceptions, but on the whole but you shouldn’t rely on Americans understanding any other language.