Thursday, 22 March 2012


One of the things I always notice when travelling are the signs around that are directed to the locals mainly. As a tourist, seeing these signs often causes puzzlement or amusement as one does not see equivalent signs in one's home country. Here are some signs I snapped during a trip to the USA in the late 1990s.

This post is part of Lesley's Signs Signs meme.

We don't have tornadoes in Melbourne so this was quite a sobering sign in Denver Airport!
"To Loiter" is a very unusual verb in Australia - We either don;t do it, or it is not as reprehensible as in the USA!

Australia used to be a nation of quite slim and fit people in the 1990s, so seeing the enormous size of some the USA citizens was quite an eye opener
No Loitering again!
This was quite a scary sign for us, coming from Australia where carrying weapons around is not the done thing
The enormous variety of car number plates we saw was interesting and amusing
Just to highlight the difference in vocabulary - In Australia a trailer is something you drag behind your car to load on refuse, boxes, garden rubbish, etc. In the USA a trailer is what we call in Australia a caravan or a mobile home


  1. Nice collection! I always like the different traffic signs in places when I travel.

  2. These are all beautiful and amusing! Can you imagine what a first time traveler to a foreign country will feel, when the traffic direction is reversed! That is my dilemma in crossing the streets of Sydney and suburbs because it is the first foreign country i visited. And a very small litter or picking flowers will cause you a high fine and TV advertisements of your wrongdoing. Jaywalking too from a country where it is not strictly done, is scary in Sydney. But i learned, and i love order and strict implementation, so after many countries after that, it is still what i love most and miss! What do you say about that Nick, haha! BTW, i love your header.

  3. Being Canadian, I also have an intake of breath when I see these weapons related signs from the US! When we were travelling as kids, one of the best car games was identifying all the different licence plates (which is what we call the 'car number plate' and I think the Americans call a 'tag' or a 'license plate' - with an s)

  4. I liked your comments on our signs in the US. Loitering just means to be hanging around, up to no good. All the individual states have their own license plates, that being one of the states' rights to impose taxes. A trailer can be many things, not just something to live in. It can haul tractors, wild hogs, heavy equipment, or your lawn mower to the repair shop! Guns are also an individual state's laws or restrictions. Here in Texas, everybody has a gun! In more liberal states the gun control laws are much more stringent.

  5. Loitering seems to be something we need lots of signs warning against!

  6. Kathy explained it all very well. You found some great examples. We've had a rough start to tornado season here, so one should always pay attention to the location of the tornado shelters. You'll see those weapons signs on a lot of hospitals and businesses, too. We take it all in stride.

    SIGNS Elk Burger

  7. Very interesting signs and comments. It's good to get a perspective from someone from a different country.

  8. Loitering is not a word used in Australian signs - that I have seen anyway! And the use of the word "trailers" in the US is certainly different! Interesting collection!


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