British English vs. American English

- There are a variety of differences between American and British English. Most differences are small and will not affect overall understanding of a text. There are too many small differences to outline below; however, we’ll go over some basic differences.

Most people have heard of the differences in vocabulary. Here’s a list of some of the most common words that differ in American and British English.

American English British English
Counter-clockwise Anti-clockwise
Trailer Caravan
Parking lot Car park
Fries, French fries Chips
Garbage can Dust bin
Apartment Flat
Vacation Holiday
Truck Lorry
Corn Maize
Math Maths
Diaper Nappy
Gas, gasoline Petrol
Attorney, lawyer Solicitor

- British and American English use the verbs "have" and "take" a bit differently. British English uses "have," while American English leans towards "take" as a delexical verb (a verb placed before a noun which describes an action).

American English British English
I’ll take a bath later. I’ll have a bath later.
I took a nap today. I had a nap today.

- Time and date formats are different in American and British English.

American English British English
July 14th 14th of July
Two weeks Fortnight
A week from Wednesday A week Wednesday
Half past four Half four
A quarter past ten A quarter after ten