How to order crisps? chips? fries? French fries?… Help!!

OK! So now that you’ve mastered the art of ordering coffee no matter where you are, you feel ready to immerse yourself in the city. But you cannot survive solely on capuccinos, can you?

It’s lunch time. What if you crave something salty? Something like this?



That’s basic English! You only have to say: Can I have some chips with my menu, please?

Easy, isn’t it?

Well, you might get this:


Confused? Don’t worry, you just happen to be in the wrong place.

As you can see, when we think of English, it’s sometimes easier said than done.

Ordering potato snacks is easy as long as you take into account the country you are in. Crisps is the British word for American chips and chips is the one for French fries. Oh, wait, what did you say? Can you repeat that?

Britons and Americans don’t share the same words for this household  product. So it is important to remember where you are when you order your «potatoes». Here is a quick guideline:

British English

American English






(French) fries

To make things even worse in 2003, during the Iraq war, some cafeterias in America removed the French adjective from French fries in response to France’s opposition to the invasion of Iraq. Fries were renamed as Freedom Fries.

freedom fries 3 Freedom fries freedom-fries


Thankfully, the name didn’t catch up, and three years later most of the cafeterias had come back to the original word.


So, now you are ready to order some crisps. But beware! Be ready for the different flavours!

And more more are being produced as you read this post!!!





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