What Do These Two Countries Have in Common?

We give you two countries. You guess what trait they have in common.
Quiz by nichster
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Last updated: March 22, 2021
First submittedMarch 13, 2021
Times taken17,456
Rating4.93
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1. Japan and Monaco
Life expectancies above 80
Border the Mediterranean
Have an emperor
Are island countries
2. Vatican City and San Marino
Are governed by a Pope
Receive more than 1 meter of snow annually
Are completely surrounded by Italy
Have Latin as an option on their ATMs
3. Brazil and Colombia
Have had multiple female Presidents
Border two or more oceans
Have won a FIFA World Cup
Are one of the top 10 coffee exporters
4. Germany and France
Are members of the EU and the G7
Have at least 20% Islamic population
Share a border with Italy
Were divided in two after WW2
5. South Africa and Kenya
Have at least one megacity
Swahili is an official language
Are members of the Commonwealth of Nations
One of the five highest per-capita incomes in Africa
6. Switzerland and Costa Rica
Have red, white and blue on their flags
Are politically neutral
Are home to wild monkey populations
Are famous for making wristwatches
7. D. R. Congo and Rwanda
Border more than 6 other countries
Had a different name in 1990
Have a population density higher than Japan
Were at one point part of the Belgian empire
8. Australia and Indonesia
Are home to tree kangaroos
Have more than 50 million people
Once had a communist government in power
Have a mountain higher than 4000 meters
9. United States and United Kingdom
Use a first past the post system in elections
Celebrate an Independence Day
Has a monarchy
Are one of the top 10 wine-producing countries
10. Iran and Syria
ISIS once held territory in the country
More than 5% of the population is Christian
The capital city begins with a T
Have a border with Iraq
11. Thailand and Myanmar
Have a king
Are home to more than 30 million Buddhists
Have changed their capital city in the past 20 years
Are on the Equator
12. Luxembourg and Qatar
Falcons are a major status item
Are landlocked
Have a per-capita income above $100,000 per year
The capital is the same name as the country
13. Denmark and Finland
Have a cross on their flag
More than 70% of land is covered in forest
Have a border with Russia
The official language evolved from Old Norse
14. Paraguay and Peru
Most of the territory lies in the Andes mountains
A majority of the population are mestizos
Have never fought in a war
Contain part of the Amazon river
15. United Arab Emirates and Morocco
Are located in Africa
Have French as an official language
Uses luxury cars for their police force
At least half of the territory is desert
+11
Level 50
Mar 15, 2021
Thank you for the detailed and interesting comments. If people would like a sequel then I will have one in the works very soon. For anyone who is curious, this quiz will be on the front page on April 22nd! Keep on quizzing!
+2
Level 50
Apr 16, 2021
Here is a link to the sequel I made a little while ago. This is a link to the whole series to which I will continue to add to.
+4
Level 50
Mar 14, 2021
13/15, and great quiz!
+14
Level 68
Mar 14, 2021
Just a little detail for 13. Swedish is an official language in Finland in the same right as Finnish, so the Old NOrse option would technically be valid (maybe change it to "most spoken language" or something of this style). Super cool quiz nontheless!
+1
Level 57
Mar 14, 2021
@Relox84, that's not how it works. Swedish came from Old Norse along with Icelandic, Danish and Norwegian.
+14
Level 78
Mar 14, 2021
So? Swedish came from Old Norse, which means that an official language in Finland came from Old Norse, just like in Denmark.
+1
Level 71
Apr 22, 2021
Agreed. Relox's suggestion is a good one.
+2
Level 57
Mar 14, 2021
Nice Quiz! I hope this goes on the home page tomorrow.
+1
Level 83
Mar 14, 2021
Fun idea!
+1
Level 58
Mar 14, 2021
Very similar to the trending puzzle blogs...glad to see a quiz format out of it!
+2
Level 74
Mar 14, 2021
Fun quiz. Just missed on South Africa. I can still remember when they were out of the Commonwealth of Nations, guess I didn't pay enough attention when they were re-admitted.
+2
Level 74
Mar 14, 2021
What a brilliant quiz idea! Interesting thought the the UK doesn't have an Independence Day, because at some point it DID become independent of the Roman Empire. Maybe the Romans just slunk away so quietly that the UK didn't notice once it started governing itself.
+2
Level 58
Mar 14, 2021
The Western Roman Empire crumbled mostly due to Germanic tribes. These came from around Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, etc, but not from England. Without anyone ruling over them, they were able to form their own government. No one really had a chance to take them over because power was divided among hundreds of feudal kingdoms in Western Europe. Also, there is the part that they were very partially in seclusion due to being on a separate island. The only real power was the Holy Roman empire, who I believe did not capture the area of Europe closest to Great Britain. I'm not quite sure to be honest, but I do know that England did not fight for independence. It was the work of tribes elsewhere.
+3
Level 82
Mar 15, 2021
The English territory was left by the Romans at the beginning of the 5th century, and it was settled by the Angles and the Saxons a bit later. What is called the dark ages is more or less a reality in England, though a naive understanding of history. Anyway, there were several independant countries on Great Britain for a few centuries, including a viking territory.

As for the "independence" of the UK, well, let us not forget, once again, that the UK is not England alone, but basically the union of England and Scotland in 1707, then their union with Ireland in 1801. It's another way of creating a country than taking one's independence...

+2
Level 58
Mar 15, 2021
Yes, but the only part of the UK to be captured by the Romans was England. Becoming another country is different from becoming independent.
+2
Level 56
Mar 15, 2021
The Romans also occupied what is now known as Wales as well as parts of what's now Southern Scotland.

Even ignoring the fact that they only occupied a part of the country that's now the UK, it's a bit tricky to declare an independence day when no-one even knows the year they left - the best guess is around 410 but that's what it is.

+3
Level 56
Apr 22, 2021
It just wouldn't make sense for the UK to celebrate independence from the Roman Empire, because the creation of the UK took place more than a millennium after the Romans left Great Britain.

Imagine if, instead of the 13 colonies uniting against the British and declaring a new country, the British had just left. Say that the colonists then fought hundreds of years of wars amongst themselves and against the native Americans, with numerous changes of regime and shifting balances of power, before finally a dominant force emerged and created something with the same territorial control as the modern USA.

You wouldn't celebrate independence day in those circumstances because there would be nothing meaningful to celebrate.

+1
Level 63
Apr 25, 2021
France doesn't have an independence day either. Neither does Germany. I haven't done any research on this, but I'm sure there are plenty of other countries that either don't have one or don't celebrate it.
+4
Level 82
Mar 14, 2021
Is the good answer for UK/USA a correct sentence? I don't understand "a first past the post system", tbh.
+4
Level 76
Mar 15, 2021
First past the post electoral systems are those in which to win an election, you just need to get the most votes.

So if there were five candidates running for a seat in parliament then Candidate A could get 13%, Candidate B 24%, Candidate C 19%, Candidate D 29% and Candidate E 15%. In this case Candidate D gets elected, despite getting less than a third of the votes.

By contrast, voting in France happens in two rounds. If the same situation happened as above Candidates D and B would go to the second round. Anyone who voted for Candidate A, C, or E could now choose which of the remaining candidates to vote for this time.

In Australia people allocate preferences in voting. The votes above would just be described as first preferences. If a person's number 1 preference isn't in the top two once first preferences have been counted, their vote is transferred to the candidate they numbered 2 and so on, until one of the top 2 candidates have more than 50%.

+6
Level 74
Mar 15, 2021
Good description. However in Australia, preferential voting has just the candidate with the least first preferences initially eliminated (and their votes redistributed according to 2nd preferences) rather than all but the 2 candidates with the most 1st preferences. The process is thereafter iterative until only two candidates are left and/or one candidate has more than 50%.
+1
Level 42
Mar 15, 2021
No strictly true. In the UK there are roughly 650 constituencies. Whichever party wins 326 of those seats or a majority compared to the other parties then they hold power. This can and has been achieved despite having fewer votes overall. Trump also won the 2016 US election despite losing the popular vote.
+1
Level 84
Mar 16, 2021
The US example though is true with respect to the electoral college, which are awarded by state (with a couple exceptions). It's "first past the post" when it comes to electoral votes. The national popular vote isn't used to determine anything.
+1
Level 72
Mar 16, 2021
Actually, the electoral college is not first past the post. The winner has to get more than 50% of the vote. If a third party candidate actually managed to receive some electoral votes, and therefore no one got to 50%, the election gets thrown to the House of Representatives, with each state getting one vote. They continue to vote until someone winds up with 50+%
+2
Level 82
Mar 15, 2021
Thanks for the explanation, it's what we call "one round majoritarian" in French. I didn't know the expression. Maybe it would be clearer with hyphenations like on the wikipedia page: "first-past-the-post".
+1
Level 55
Mar 19, 2021
I live in the US and am fairly politically active, but have never heard this term. Always a good day to learn something new, however.
+1
Level 38
Apr 22, 2021
You are correct - it should be hyphenated!
+3
Level 54
Mar 15, 2021
All correct except 5, 6, 8, 9
+1
Level 74
Mar 15, 2021
Great quiz! I had to guess for the Australia/Indonesia one, but got it.. I didn't know that Indonesia had a substantial marsupial population!
+1
Level 66
Apr 22, 2021
Same! Except I got that one wrong (thought it was the mountain one) :/
+2
Level 79
Mar 15, 2021
Great idea! Look forward to more...
+2
Level 66
Mar 15, 2021
#3 "Have had at multiple female presidents"

Superb quiz

I was overthunking the FPTP system part of the USA/UK one, and the whole ridiculous electoral college thing and ended up choosing wine-producing countries. Thinking is often my worst enemy...

+1
Level 74
Mar 21, 2021
Spelling in Q1: Mediterranean
+2
Level 60
Mar 29, 2021
I missed the Japan Monaco one because I misread it as Mexico🤦
+2
Level 73
Apr 22, 2021
I think 'Are one of the top 10 coffee exporters' should be changed to 'Are two of the top 10 coffee exporters'.
+1
Level 48
Apr 22, 2021
That was a tough one. I am happy with my 12/15!
+1
Level 47
Apr 22, 2021
14/15, got the Thailand-Myanmar wrong, and I hesitated with the right answer
+1
Level 75
Apr 22, 2021
Fun concept :)
+1
Level 61
Apr 22, 2021
Very good quiz, thanx.
+2
Level 55
Apr 22, 2021
Good quiz! Not a fan of "politically neutral" for Switzerland and Costa Rica - that's a very imprecise term. In international politics they both actively advocate for their interests. You could change it to "have declared military neutrality"
+2
Level 59
Apr 22, 2021
The answer "Use a first past the post system in elections' would have been much more understandable if it had been punctuated "Use a first-past-the-post system."
+1
Level 49
Apr 22, 2021
Love it. It might have helped if I had any idea what a mestizo is
+1
Level 26
Apr 22, 2021
I got them all right on the first try because I AM THE MAN