12 Things Non-Canadians Find Weird About Canada

Canada, with its vast landscapes and friendly people, is a country that often captures the curiosity of visitors from around the world. While Canadians themselves may find their way of life perfectly ordinary, there are several aspects of Canadian culture and daily life that can seem quite peculiar to those who are not from the Great White North.

1. Milk in Bags

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In Canada, it’s common to find milk sold in plastic bags rather than cartons or jugs. Non-Canadians may find this practice quite unusual. These bags are typically placed in a pitcher, and a corner is snipped off to pour the milk. It’s an eco-friendly choice as it reduces plastic waste, but for newcomers, it can be a bit puzzling.

2. The Love for Hockey

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Hockey is more than just a sport in Canada; it’s a national obsession. Non-Canadians might be surprised by the fervent passion Canadians have for the game. From kids playing on frozen ponds to packed arenas for professional matches, hockey’s significance goes beyond entertainment; it’s a cultural touchstone.

3. Double-Double Coffee Orders

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When ordering coffee in Canada, you might hear phrases like “double-double” or “triple-triple.” These terms refer to the amount of cream and sugar added to the coffee. It’s a unique coffee customization that might raise eyebrows among those accustomed to simpler coffee orders.

4. Apologizing Profusely

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Canadians are famously polite, and apologizing is a national pastime. Non-Canadians may find it odd how often Canadians say “sorry” even when they aren’t at fault. It’s a cultural quirk that reflects Canada’s friendly and considerate reputation.

5. Poutine

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Poutine, a Canadian delicacy, is a dish that may baffle newcomers. It consists of french fries topped with cheese curds and smothered in gravy. While it might sound unusual, the combination of flavors and textures makes it a beloved comfort food in Canada.

6. Tim Hortons Craze

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Tim Hortons, a coffee and fast-food chain, holds a special place in the hearts of Canadians. Non-Canadians may find it strange just how popular “Timmies” is, with its iconic coffee and Timbits (doughnut holes). It’s not just a place to grab a quick bite; it’s a cultural institution.

7. Metric System vs. Imperial System

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Canada uses the metric system for most measurements, like kilometers and liters, which can be confusing for visitors accustomed to the imperial system. Understanding the temperature in Celsius and distances in kilometers might take some adjustment.

8. Toque Wearing in All Seasons

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Non-Canadians may wonder why Canadians wear knit hats, known as toques, throughout the year. In Canada, toques are more than just a fashion statement; they’re a practical accessory to ward off the chilly weather, even in milder seasons.

9. The Royal Family’s Presence

London, UK. 30 May, 2017. Prince Harry, Patron of the Invictus Games Foundation, attends the launch of the team selected to represent the UK at the Invictus Games Toronto 2017.
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Canada is part of the British Commonwealth, and the British monarchy still holds symbolic importance. Non-Canadians might find it unusual to see images of Queen Elizabeth II on Canadian currency and the continued relevance of royal ceremonies and traditions.

10. Multilingual Packaging

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In Canada, product packaging often includes both English and French labels, reflecting the country’s bilingual nature. Non-Canadians may find it intriguing how two languages coexist seamlessly in everyday life, from cereal boxes to road signs.

11. “EH” Punctuation

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Non-Canadians might be puzzled by the frequent use of “eh” in Canadian conversations. It’s not a question but more of a friendly tag-on phrase. Canadians use it to seek agreement or validation from their listeners, making conversations feel inclusive and polite.

12. The Popularity of Maple Syrup

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Maple syrup isn’t just a pancake topping in Canada; it’s a cultural treasure. Non-Canadians may find it fascinating how this sweet, golden elixir is celebrated annually during the Maple Syrup Festival, where people indulge in everything maple-flavored, from taffy to ice cream.

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This article was produced and syndicated by A Dime Saved.