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American travellers spark backlash after claiming that Europeans ‘don’t believe in water’ while on trip abroad

Many Americans on TikTok have claimed that they don’t drink enough water while abroad

Amber Raiken
New York
Friday 28 July 2023 20:48 BST
Related: Water in-toxification dangers

A group of American travellers have sparked backlash after claiming that “Europeans don’t believe in water”.

In a recent TikTok video, Brenna, who goes by the username @br3nnak3ough, shared footage of her and her friends on a trips in Europe. The video went on to show the three women chugging bottles of water, while on what appears to be the streets of Barcelona.

Brenna also poked fun at why they were drinking water so quickly, and why they were dehydrated on the trip. “Us the moment we find water because Europeans don’t believe in water,” she wrote in the text over the video.

As of 14 July, the video has more than 8.3m views, with multiple TikTok users criticising Brenna’s claim about the lack of water in Europe. They also pointed out how different cities in the continent tend to have water fountains for people to drink out of.

“I don’t get it, because there are literally free water well’s everywhere … These little girls,” one wrote.

“Water is everywhere. many cities also have drinking fountains,” another agreed.

“People are dramatic [as f***],” a third added. “There are markets/stores everywhere & a bottle of water is cheaper than in the US. They have water in restaurants.”

While some people said that this claim about water in Europe was “not true”, others proceeded to make jokes about the video.

“I love Americans for providing constant entertainment,” one quipped, while another added: “*confused in European*”

Brenna later posted a follow-up video about how she didn’t drink a lot of water in Europe. As she shared footage of her and her friends drinking Coronas, she quipped: “Who needs water when you have beer.” The caption also included #barcelona in it.

The Independent has contacted Brenna for comment.

Meanwhile, many other Americans have shared videos on TikTok about the lack of water they drink in Europe. In a video posted in April, @ditchthedistrict claimed that she drinks more water than Europeans do. Her video included footage of her small cups of water, while at a restaurant, along with the bottles of water that she brought into her home.

“Everywhere I go, I’m drinking the same amount of water as the three other people at the table combined. I’m hoarding water bottles in my room,” she said. “I feel like my organs are turning into beef jerky [because] they’re so dry. I can drink a whole bottle of water before my first course even comes at a restaurant.”

She claimed that she’s sometimes “the only one” who orders water at a table, before jokingly asking Europeans a question: “How can I be less thirsty like y’all when I’m on this continent.”

In the comments, some people claimed that they had similar experiences when travelling to Europe, with one writing: “I felt like a SOCIOPATH taking my water bottle out of my bag in Paris, but like… I don’t enjoy suffering??

In addition, another TikTok user, @dude.152, shared a video in June of small glasses they got at a restaurant. They also showcased the glass bottle of water that they were sharing, as the bottle was nearly empty. “When you ask for water at a restaurant in Europe.”

According to the European Commission, which is part of the executive of the European Union, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) “notes that water intake in European countries is lower than the recommended or guidance values”.

In Europe, “most countries consume less than 1000 ml/d” of water a day, with “the exception of Austria, Germany, Norway”. According to the European Commission, “all national dietary guidelines among European countries include recommendations on adequate intake of water and fluids; most specify 1.5 to 2 litres of water per day”.

The amount of water that Americans drink is a bit higher, as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes that from 2015 to 2018, adults drank an average of 44 ounces of water, which is equivalent to 1.3 litres, a day. The recommended daily water intake is also higher in America than Europe, as the Mayo Clinic notes that men in the US should be drinking about 3.7 litres of water a day, while women should be drinking about 2.7 litres.

As noted byCondé Nast Traveler, there are some water drinking habits in Europe that are uncommon in America. For example, tap water is often safe to drink in most of Europe, so people can refill their reusable bottles at home. In countries like Italy, Germany, and Belgium, there are also public taps for people to refill their bottles.

Bottled water is also available for purchase at most stores, with both still or sparkling water usually offered at restaurants in Europe.

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