How can you differentiate between a British, German, and a French person, apart from their accent and names?
I’m French, lived 10 years in the UK and currently living in Germany. I can sometimes tell the three apart from some subtle physical features.
•Freckles and red hair > very common in the UK, relatively common in France, very rare in Germany.
•Blue eyes > very common in the UK and in Germany, relatively rare in France.
•British people are generally taller than French people, and German people are generally taller than British people.
•French people tend to be generally less overweight than in the UK and Germany (or perhaps overweight people in France stay indoors?).
There are also ways people dress, but it’s very complex and would take a lot of time to explain. Some items of clothing are just more popular in some countries than in others. For example, German people often wear sandals with their socks on, which is something a French person would normally never do. In Berlin, where I live, people don’t really dress a smart as they would in Paris or London. Germans have a reputation for not caring so much about their outward appearance – as long as the clothes are efficient and comfortable, they’re happy! They also seem to love sportswear more than anywhere else.
Traits of character:
•The French cannot queue, while the British just seem to love it.
•French people are always late, British people are always on time and German people are always early.
•French people use their hands a lot more when they speak, and take a lot more time to say something.
•French people care a lot about how things are done or said. The British do care about things are done and said, but only in a context of etiquette and politeness. Germans just care about how things are done.
•The French and the British seem to care more about how things look. For example, food products and packaging.
Habits and customs:
•French people kiss on the cheeks when saying hello to friends and relatives, whereas British people do it only with very close friends, and even though very rarely. A lot of them just never do it, even with their family. They don’t even shake hands (except perhaps in more formal settings). Germans are somehow in between, but a handshake is usually enough.
•When it comes to food, for example in a restaurant, a French person would never think of ordering beer with a meal, which is something totally normal for a German or a Brit.
•I find Germans the cleanest and most disciplined in public spaces. The French are the worst and the British somehow in between.