20 Things You Should Never Do In Canada, According To Canadians In This Online Thread

Published 2 years ago

Canada has an amazing reputation for being friendly and hospitable. In fact, so many people migrate to Canada every year because of its amiability. With mesmerizing sceneries, rich wildlife, and incredibly polite people, the country loves to host immigrants and tourists.

However, sometimes tourists are unaware of the cultural aspects and unwritten rules of the country. So, recently a Redditor turned to the r/AskACanadian community on Reddit and asked “I’m from The Netherlands and I was wondering if there were some things you shouldn’t do in Canada apart from the relatively obvious ones you shouldn’t do in any country.” Many Canadians replied to the post by sharing interesting things about their culture and lifestyle. Scroll below to find out some dos and don’ts for visiting Canada.

More info: Reddit

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Image source: klimaz

Don’t drive around your truck with a Canadian flag on it. You look like a Yank or an idiot or both.


Image source: ruthie_imogene

Do not litter. Carry your trash with you until you find a garbage can. This means if you are in a park or wild area with NO services: you pack out your garbage!


Image source: SinisterCanuck

You may refer to us as Canadians or even North Americans. NEVER refer to us as just ‘Americans’. That’s the people to our south, not us.

Former Prime Minister of Canada, Paul Martin, once said “a big part of being Canadian, is that you’re not American”.


Image source: jales4

When dressing to go out, don’t just look at the temperature. -20 can be cold, really cold, or dangerously cold depending on wind and humidity.


Image source: curmudgeonchief

Don’t leave your shoes on when you enter a house.


Image source: landothedead

Don’t underestimate the geese. Canadian Geese are a**holes and will attack you if you go near them.


Image source: AUniquePerspective

It’s good to note that the cold tap water might be cold enough to hurt you and the hot tap water might be hot enough to hurt you.


Image source: radiorules

Don’t be surprised by Canadian humour: we use a lot of sarcasm and irony. We have our own special way of making a mockery of everything and everyone. We get along pretty well with the Brits on that.


Image source: renslips

Don’t assume we are just like Americans or that everything is like America.


Image source: Mirror_hsif

It’s common that if you catch someone’s eye while passing in the street you give a little yes nod or a smile. It’s not strictly necessary etiquette but don’t be surprised if someone does that to you.

Or here in Newfoundland where you’ll also get a ‘how ya gettin on der buddy’ to which you reply ‘best kind’.


Image source: MamaK1973

If you’re driving and someone slows down to let you into traffic, give them a little wave. It might not be as common in big cities, but it is most definitely a thing is most areas.


Image source: L3plusD2

Don’t cut your milk bag unless it’s secured in a pitcher. Milk is sold in bags here. It’s easy and tidy and great until it’s not. Also don’t cut the hole too big. And don’t cut it with an old dull serrated knife.


Image source: The-Figurehead

Don’t take this the wrong way, but don’t act superior about Europe vs. North America. It can get really tiresome. “In Europe we would never eat dinner this early.” “In Europe our universities are free” “in Europe we don’t have TV ads for lawyers or prescription drugs” “in Europe our beer isn’t served so cold” “in Europe we don’t put so much ice in our beverages”.

You seem like a nice person who wouldn’t do it, but it seems second nature to Europeans.


Image source: BrightDegree3

Do not expect public transit to be on time or actually go everywhere you want to go. Do not expect to be able to safely ride your bike everywhere you want. Bike lanes are too few and cars will use them.


Image source: Nolleezz

Don’t underestimate the wildlife. Deer can attack w deadly results and raccoons have sharp teeth, claws and opposable thumbs. Think of them as 10–20kg bears that can grab your face.


Image source: BlargTheGreat

Don’t underestimate travel times. Canada is a big country. Also, when asked how far away something is, we tend to answer in time units. It’s “a ten hour drive” or “a two hour ferry ride” or “a five hour flight.


Image source: lacontrolfreak

Don’t equate French Canadian culture with French Culture. The sayings, expressions and swear words have evolved separately over centuries, just like new world English speakers.


Image source: randyboozer

Obvious one I guess but don’t refer to our indigenous population as Indians.


Image source: u/Owldove

Please DO NOT feed the wildlife. The number of times I’ve seen tourists feeding bears along the side of the road is staggering. That puts everyone at risk all because people want to stage a fun photo.


Image source: isaidack

Don’t assume everyone here is polite and nice. This country is full of horrible, racist, rude people.

Saumya Ratan

Saumya is an explorer of all things beautiful, quirky, and heartwarming. With her knack for art, design, photography, fun trivia, and internet humor, she takes you on a journey through the lighter side of pop culture.

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Canada, Canadian community, Canadian culture, Canadians, dos and don'ts, dos and don'ts in Canada, unwritten rules
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