American/United States


Senior Member
Hi forum!!!

When referring to people from the Unites States, it is acceptable and understandable to say:

Our American customers are asking for their boarding passes.

Or I should say:

Our customers from United States are asking for their boarding passes.

Or... both expressions are acceptable?

  • cuchuflete

    Senior Member
    Hello Diddy,
    It depends entirely on where the statement is made. If it is stated in an English speaking country, there should be no problem with either "American passengers" or with "passengers from the United States". In some other countries you may encounter sensitivity or displeasure at the use of the term American to mean from the U.S.

    Forum Search will reveal some painfully long threads on that topic, which should not be beat to death again in this thread.


    Senior Member
    (San Francisco) English
    I agree with the comment above. If your audience is just people from the US, it's fine to use "American". In other cases, you should consider exactly who your audience members are and whether they're going to be offended.


    Senior Member
    As always...thanks a lot for your answer Cuchuflete and Franzi!!! I hope this thread will not be the starting point for a non-stop debate on this subject... I only have placed the question because this is for a translation text from Spanish to English, and I was not sure if I can use either of those expressions.

    Giorgio Lontano

    Senior Member
    Guatemala - Español
    Oops!, post #5 already, sorry. I just have a comment, which is how I, as a Non-US-Citizen "American" came to accept that particular use of the word, as follows:

    When the former British colonies joined, they called their brand new country America, just like the continent. If hypothetically speaking (or in a parallel universe perhaps :p) Spain, Portugal, France & Italy had formed such "Union" and called their country "The United States of Europe", there would be the same issue regarding the word "European".

    Again, just my crazy opinion. :)

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