Things British People Know that Americans Don't

These trivia questions should be easy for any British person, but almost impossible for Americans. Can you answer them?
Quiz by Quizmaster
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Last updated: August 2, 2020
First submittedAugust 2, 2020
Times taken12,558
Rating4.28
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Hint
Answer
If a British person says "I went to my local", where have they gone?
a Pub
What must British households pay £157.50 per year in order to legally use?
Television
What popular British TV series is known as "Strictly" for short?
Strictly Come Dancing
What test cricket series has been played between England and Australia since 1882?
The Ashes
What city did Lady Godiva ride through without any clothes on?
Coventry
What is the name of the senior Minister of the Crown who deals with the
internal affairs of the United Kingdom?
Home Secretary
What units do British people typically use to measure their weight?
Stone and pounds
What food product is the Walkers company famous for making?
Crisps
(aka, Potato Chips)
What card is used to pay for journeys on London's public transit system?
Oyster Card
What Somalian-born runner has won 4 gold medals for Great Britain?
Mo Farah
What was the profession of Margaret Thatcher's father?
Greengrocer
What are Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly better known as?
Ant & Dec
What is the name of the fake children's character who is pink with yellow spots and
whose #1 Christmas hit is considered possibly the worst song of all time?
Mr. Blobby
What word, starting with W, means "to whine or complain"?
Whinge
On what holiday is it most common for British people to light fireworks?
Guy Fawkes Day
Who is the star of the British version of "The Apprentice"?
Lord Sugar
In what country was Prince Philip born?
Greece
What have people chased down Cooper's Hill each year for hundreds of years?
Cheese
What type of people belong to London's "Inner Temple"?
Barristers
(aka Lawyers)
Where do Scousers come from?
Liverpool / Merseyside
Americans spell the last letter of the alphabet as "zee".
How do British people spell it?
Zed
+9
Level 80
Aug 2, 2020
What city did Lady Godiva ride through without any clothes on? Answer: None. See, e.g., Wikipedia: "Despite its considerable age, [the legend of her ride] is not regarded as plausible by modern historians, nor is it mentioned in the two centuries intervening between Godiva's death and its first appearance, while her generous donations to the church receive various mentions."
+38
Level 78
Aug 3, 2020
That's easily fixed...just precede the question with "According to legend..." Still, I don't think anybody who knew the answer failed to enter it because of doubts about the veracity of the account.
+28
Level 70
Aug 4, 2020
'cpgatbyu' wins the 'Golden Nitpick' award for August 2020....... Congratulations!
+8
Level 54
Aug 17, 2020
Not to nitpick, but technically speaking, he was referencing a nitpick. He didn't actually nitpick.
+1
Level 58
Aug 19, 2020
Nerd
+1
Level 80
Aug 23, 2020
Coventry didn't become a city until 1345, so strictly you're correct. I like the story, so I'll keep believing it - it doesn't hurt anyone for me to do so.
+10
Level 50
Aug 3, 2020
Not British , not American. 3/21
+1
Level 78
Aug 3, 2020
This is a difficult one!
+5
Level 69
Aug 3, 2020
Not British, not American, 17/21
+1
Level 20
Aug 17, 2020
Not British nor American, but having lived for 6 months in the UK... 5/21
+1
Level 56
Aug 17, 2020
Not British, likely American: 7/21, plus a few more I couldn’t recall in time.
+1
Level 58
Aug 17, 2020
Not British nor American, 20/21
+2
Level 47
Aug 17, 2020
Not British, Very American, 3/21.
+1
Level 67
Aug 20, 2020
8/21 American. Tough one.
+9
Level 72
Aug 3, 2020
Brits spell it Z, pronounce it "zed"
+8
Level 73
Aug 3, 2020
No, those of us who know how to spell letters do also spell it zed. (If only more Brits knew how to spell aitch, it might more consistently be correctly pronounced.)
+4
Level 78
Aug 3, 2020
Commenting prior to taking the quiz. I'm about to find out just how much watching Premier League football has broadened my horizons in any meaningful way, if at all. Absolutely love this idea for a quiz. Probably gonna crash & burn, but here goes....
+5
Level 78
Aug 3, 2020
14-of-21 for 3 points. I'll take it. Scousers was a slam dunk for this LFC fan. (since 1997, BTW) I knew potato chips are called crisps, just didn't know Walkers made 'em. Thatcher's dad, Oyster card, Lord Sugar, "Strictly" & Mr. Blobby....absolutely no clue.

Awesome quiz!
+3
Level 71
Aug 3, 2020
How unfair! I got 15/21 for only 2 points. :(
+2
Level 78
Aug 4, 2020
My point total has since been downgraded to only 2. So I imagine that means that subsequent quiz-takers have mostly gotten more correct.
+5
Level 70
Aug 3, 2020
I thought Walkers made those delicious little shortbread cookies. Or is that just a American product?
+4
Level 56
Aug 3, 2020
Good point, there is another 'Walkers' company who do make Scottish Shortbread. Walkers crisps are far more widespread and common throughout the UK though.
+2
Level 77
Aug 3, 2020
It's Scottish, in fact biggest Scottish food exporter. Shortbread should be accepted but it's up to Brits, maybe it's just really known abroad: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walkers_Shortbread
+1
Level 47
Aug 17, 2020
Scots are still British. maybe I just misunderstood the beginning of your sentence. I thought you were saying "It's Scottish" to justify it not being an answer to the British question.
+1
Level 54
Aug 17, 2020
The only Walkers I know of is Hiram Walkers.
+2
Level 81
Aug 17, 2020
Is he related to Johnnie?
+2
Level 69
Aug 17, 2020
Walkers shortbread is what I thought of too. Maybe Quizzmaster forgot Scotland is part of Great Britain. :)
+3
Level 48
Aug 17, 2020
Yeah, I tried "shortbread," "shortbread biscuits," and even "shortbread cookies" just in case. When I saw the intended answer at the end of the quiz it was like a lightbulb went off in my head. Oh, THOSE Walkers!

Oh well, sometimes one idea can get in the way of another!

+3
Level 48
Aug 17, 2020
I feel especially silly about this because there is in fact an unopened bag of ready salted Walkers potato crisps sitting right next to my laptop as I type. If I had just looked a few inches to the left of my screen while taking the quiz, the answer would have smacked me in the face.

I'm just a bigger fan of the shortbread, I suppose.

+1
Level 54
Aug 17, 2020
No you're right - although the crisps are better known in the UK, shortbread is a valid answer here. And please don't let's go down that 'but it's Scottish' track - Scotland is still part of the UK, and Scots are British.
+1
Level 52
Aug 17, 2020
Yes, it should reference that they're advertised by Gary Lineker - then all Brits would know it ;)
+4
Level 64
Aug 3, 2020
Brit here, only got 16 lol. It’s amazing to see so few people get the walkers question and ant and dec. I feel like they would have a 99% guess rate if just in the uk!
+1
Level 69
Aug 3, 2020
British and got 14/21. Not so great at the sport questions
+13
Level 83
Aug 3, 2020
21/21 on the first attempt! Sorry. (If you are British you’ll know we are brought up to apologise for any achievement.)
+2
Level 69
Aug 3, 2020
9/21 for 1 point. As a non-American, non-British person, I'll take what I can get. I knew the Oyster card from my 4 day visit of London and I guessed crisps based on the love of Brits for fish and chips (yes, I know chips =/= crisps). I've seen some episodes of Britain's got talent, so maybe I should've gotten Ant & Dec too, but everything else I missed was absolutely new for me.
+1
Level 58
Aug 17, 2020
"I guessed crisps based on the love of Brits for fish and chips" That makes no sense at all, regardless of the chips/crisps naming thing.
+1
Level 77
Aug 3, 2020
16/21 as a non- native Anglophone
+8
Level 64
Aug 3, 2020
PJ and Duncan not being accepted for Ant and Dec is unacceptable!
+3
Level 80
Aug 3, 2020
That's showing your age!
+3
Level 59
Aug 4, 2020
Let's get ready to rhumble~
+7
Level 75
Aug 3, 2020
Just a couple of small points -

Guy Fawkes Day isn't actually a holiday, i.e. it is not a public holiday.

The whole Mr Blobby thing is even more embarassing as he wasn't a children's character - he was introduced in Noel's House Party which was aimed at adults. Though you could say adults with a childish mentality.
+6
Level 80
Aug 3, 2020
Also, we refer to "Guy Fawkes' Night".
+1
Level 52
Aug 17, 2020
"Bonfire Night"
+2
Level 76
Aug 3, 2020
Noel's House Party was aimed at a broad 'family' audience, not just adults. Blobby was presumably 'for the kids', though he seemed to me to be a cruel parody of what adults thought kids would like (though perhaps as a child I couldn't express it quite like that) and I couldn't stand him. Then again, most of my peers enjoyed him, which suggests it did hit the target audience. Only funny thing Blobby has ever done was chase a terrified Jack Whitehall around the Big Fat Quiz studio. And most of that was me laughing at Jack and the genuine fear on his face. Being slightly older, I was never scared of Blobby, but I can understand the sentiment of fear of a young boy towards a large, loud, very touchy-feely, pink lump. And it still being there 20+ years later when said lump jumps through a wall and comes running at you!
+2
Level 56
Aug 3, 2020
I couldn't answer two, which is perhaps a bit embarrassing since I am British... fun idea for a quiz! A reverse American one would be entertaining too
+9
Level 70
Aug 3, 2020
There are already many "reverse American ones" - just that they weren't intentional!
+1
Level 81
Aug 3, 2020
American - 21/21
+1
Level 71
Aug 3, 2020
What makes a cricket series a "test" series?
+4
Level 72
Aug 3, 2020
A test match is a full international match between two countries (or a group of countries in the case of the West Indies). I say 'full' because originally it was the only form of international cricket. Since the term was invented, one day internationals have now been introduced, but the test match is still regarded as the ultimate form of the game. The term 'test' refers to the length of a test match (i.e. 5 days) and therefore the longest length of all types of professional cricket matches, and when the term was coined, probably the longest single game of any sport. The term therefore refers to a test of endurance. However, as there are breaks for meals, drinks etc and play is only for about 6 hours a day, not really a terribly accurate phrase!
+2
Level 76
Aug 3, 2020
A 'best of x' series of 5 day (each team bats twice) 'Tests' played between any 2 of the 12 test sides (elite nations): Australia, England, South Africa, West Indies, New Zealand, India, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Zimbabwe, Bangladesh, Ireland and Afghanistan.
+1
Level 54
Aug 17, 2020
Oh did you have to ask....... I think it's because they're an endurance test for spectators.
+3
Level 72
Aug 3, 2020
Lovely set of questions. As a proud Brit, I was nervous that I might not get 21/21 first time, but I did. Just one issue:: @ Quizmaster - although Alfred Roberts (Margaret Thatcher's father) did serve as apprentice to a greengrocer, he spent his career as a grocer. I'm not sure of the exact terminology in the colonies, but here in the UK a greengrocer sells fruit & vegetables but a grocer sells tea, butter, tinned goods etc. To have 'greengrocer' as the main answer (although 'grocer' is an accepted type-in) is not the best. Also, roleybob is right on the two points he made
+3
Level 88
Aug 3, 2020
Was getting really frustrated that Octopus wasn't accepted... until I remembered that was Hong Kong's version.
+1
Level 76
Aug 3, 2020
Oyster stole the seafood-beginning-with-o idea from Hong Kong (and the whole idea in the first place), but went with "the world's your..."
+2
Level 82
Aug 3, 2020
Fun and informative! I'm from the USA and I only got 8 out of 21. After seeing the answers I feel I should have gotten a couple more, but they just didn't come to me. I had never heard of the Cooper's Hill event, but I'm very amused by the idea!
+3
Level 81
Aug 4, 2020
For the last question would you accept I T? 5 stars for a fun quiz
+1
Level 67
Aug 17, 2020
I must give you the award for the most genius answer on this quiz. Here you go 🏆
+2
Level 89
Aug 4, 2020
Hiya,

Great quiz! Here are a few suggestions:

The television licence pays for the BBC and not for television in general.

The Oyster Card question might be rather dated as, while Oyster Cards are still valid, since 2014, they have been in the process of being phased out in favour of contactless bank cards in the 'TfL' scheme.

In common terminology, 5 November is referred to as 'Guy Fawkes Night' and not 'Guy Fawkes Day'.
+1
Level ∞
Aug 4, 2020
The quiz is accurate. Guy Fawkes Night is also called Guy Fawkes Day and you need a TV license to watch any channel, not just the BBC.

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Guy_Fawkes_Night

https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/check-if-you-need-one

+2
Level 59
Aug 4, 2020
Regarding Guy Fawke's. Maybe according to Wikipedia, but I'm sure most Brits would agree that it's extremely rare to hear it, being that any celebrations typically happen after dark. The most common name used in my personal experience is actually just "bonfire night", whatever that's worth And while yes, according to that link, you do need a TV license for pretty much any live TV or streaming, the vast majority of money is paid to the BBC https://www.tvlicensing.co.uk/check-if-you-need-one/topics/what-does-your-licence-fee-pay-for-top13
+1
Level ∞
Aug 4, 2020
Yeah, I should have put "Guy Fawkes Night" originally, but now I'm being stubborn :)
+2
Level 49
Aug 17, 2020
I'm a 54 year old Brit, originally from Lancashire and for the last 30 years, Shropshire. Never called it Guy Fawke's Day or Guy Fawke's Night. Known it as Bonfire Night or 5th of November. Certainly not a 'holiday'. Good quiz though.
+2
Level 39
Aug 17, 2020
Yer I agree, I've never come across Guy Fawkes' Night being called Guy Fawkes' Day except by foreigners... perhaps that is another thing which British people know which Americans don't? ;-)
+3
Level 71
Aug 5, 2020
21/21. I'd agree with the Guy Fawkes' Night comment, no-one calls it Guy Fawkes' Day. It's either Guy Fawkes' Night or Bonfire Night. It's also not a holiday - really it's just an annual evening event.
+1
Level 75
Aug 10, 2020
I guess in a loose sense, holiday could be translated as festival/day of celebration (e.g. fiesta would cover this?), not necessarily a day off work.
+2
Level 58
Aug 17, 2020
Agreed: never heard it called Guy Fawke's Day (all the activities take place in the evening), it is and never has been a holiday (in the UK, a holiday is either when you go away for a week or two, or when there's a government-defined day off work for many people, generally called a Bank Holiday).
+1
Level 70
Aug 4, 2020
As an American I knew some of the answers. The others I remember hearing the hosts of Top Gear (Clarkson, Hammond, May) mention or talk about.
+2
Level 72
Aug 5, 2020
American - got the first and the last. Pub and Zed That's It!
+1
Level 59
Aug 6, 2020
Ditto
+1
Level 70
Aug 5, 2020
7/21, two of which I learned from Harry Potter. This was definitely a tough one.
+1
Level 65
Aug 17, 2020
Does cheese run quickly in the UK?
+1
Level 56
Aug 17, 2020
It does down that hill!
+1
Level 40
Aug 17, 2020
It does if you roll a massive wheel of it down an extremely steep hill.
+1
Level 56
Aug 17, 2020
21/21. True Brit.
+1
Level 51
Aug 17, 2020
agree about guy fawkes’ night v.s. day, but could boring old 5th November or November 5 be accepted as well? that was my first guess as a brit
+1
Level 71
Aug 17, 2020
You've been able to pay for London's public transport (services from TfL) using any contactless payment card for a few years now. Only tourists and people with travelcards use Oysters!
+1
Level 23
Aug 17, 2020
Missed Ant and Dec😢😭 my favourites❤😍😘😢
+1
Level 50
Aug 17, 2020
Wow. Just Fawkes, zed, cheese, and stone. (Don't try to get a cheese question past me) But I finally learn what 'whinge' means.
+1
Level 57
Aug 17, 2020
Saaaaad! I tried November 5th, 11/5, 5/11, 5th of November, but I just didn't think to enter Guy Fawkes Day!!! ^^
+1
Level 43
Aug 17, 2020
I'm British and ended up with 15... I'm not really into sports or politics, to be fair xD
+1
Level 59
Aug 17, 2020
Got 9 out of 21 as a german. Should have gotten the Guy Fawkes one
+1
Level 20
Aug 17, 2020
Im from britain and I didnt know about 5 of these. And I drink tea!
+1
Level 80
Aug 17, 2020
I knew more than half of these. But still pretty challenging. Took me a while to remember Oyster card even though I still have mine in a drawer somewhere.
+1
Level 61
Aug 17, 2020
Not much of an achievement for a UK-born individual, but I did get them all right.
+3
Level 65
Aug 17, 2020
"What are Anthony McPartlin and Declan Donnelly better known as?" Can "a couple of right plonkers" be accepted?
+2
Level 73
Aug 17, 2020
12/21 for an American, im pretty happy with that.
+2
Level 52
Aug 17, 2020
Honorary Brit!
+1
Level 56
Aug 17, 2020
Californian. I got Oyster, zed, Farrah, CHips, stone, and I should have been allowed shopkeeper for thatchy watchy's dad
+1
Level 52
Aug 17, 2020
Please accept "Double Gloucester" for the Cooper's Hill question!!!
+1
Level 38
Aug 17, 2020
thank you for introducing me to Mr. Blobby
+1
Level 47
Aug 17, 2020
Australian, 18/21. Was sure Mr Thatcher was a newsagent for some reason.
+1
Level 51
Aug 17, 2020
Can biscuits also be acceptable for walkers? there is another company in the UK called Walkers that make shortbread, biscuits, cookies, etc https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Walkers_Shortbread#:~:text=Walkers%20Shortbread%20is%20a%20Scottish,%2C%20biscuits%2C%20cookies%20and%20crackers.&text=The%20company's%20signature%20pure%20butter,by%20Joseph%20Walker%20in%201898.
+1
Level 68
Aug 17, 2020
Another vote for accepting shortbread!!
+1
Level 66
Aug 18, 2020
I also went with the shortbread (various versions) and I forgot the runners last name. Definitely just tried his first tho.
+1
Level 31
Aug 18, 2020
We don’t spell it see we pronounce it zed
+1
Level 28
Aug 18, 2020
I'm American and I got 18/21. Granted I do watch a lot of UK media.
+1
Level 35
Aug 18, 2020
"Almost impossible" yet I got more than a third on the first try
+1
Level 16
Aug 18, 2020
I got zed, oyster, stone, and chips.
+1
Level 58
Aug 19, 2020
I'm American & got 8. Thought I should have got credit for calling Thatcher's dad a merchant though.
+1
Level 23
Aug 19, 2020
We use kilograms much more often than pounds/stone! I don't know anyone that uses stone on a regular basis.
+1
Level 54
Aug 19, 2020
British born and raised so no surprise at the full house- wish I'd missed Mr Blobby though!
+1
Level 40
Aug 21, 2020
Can you do an inverse quiz now, things only Americans would know that Brits would not?
+1
Level 47
Aug 22, 2020
I love it that Cooper's Hill is more famous than Coventry!
+1
Level 67
Oct 15, 2020
The date of the holiday is not accepted? Come on.