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Question for Americans & Europeans; How do you write the date while traveling?

Question for Americans & Europeans; How do you write the date while traveling?

Old Oct 19th, 2001, 05:14 AM
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Question for Americans & Europeans; How do you write the date while traveling?

On the news regarding the 2 letters sent to Daschle and Brokaw, they keep pointing out that the date is written as an American would write it 09/11/01, which leads authorities to believe it was written by an American. I don't think you can draw that conclusion. I don't know about the rest of you, but even though I'm an American, when I am in another country I write the date so that it is understood by whomever is reading it. When I travel overseas, from the moment I fill out the forms prior to landing, I would write the date 11/09/01. I just got to thinking if it was reasonable to assume that if a date was written the "American" way that an American wrote it. So how about the rest of you? How do you write the date when traveling overseas?
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 05:29 AM
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Are Americans the only people who write month/day/year, rather than day/month/year.

I've always thought it was rather an odd way of doing it. Why is that?

But I think you're right, whover wrote the letters would, you would think, have enough sence to right it the "American" way. I do when in America, although it confuses me greatly.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 05:31 AM
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Always day/month/year like I do it in a commercial letter, i.e. 19th October 2001. When I write a private letter, I do not use the number of the month, but do write the month in full letters, i.e. October.
I find it very confusing the other way round, but I do know that Americans write month/day/year, i.e. October 19, 2001.
From my experience, when you need to fill a form for customs etc., it's usually clearly mentioned where to fill in what.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 05:41 AM
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I'm not sure if Americans are the only ones to write month/day/year. When you think about it, it doesn't make sense. day/month/year, going from the smaller shortest increment of time to the longest makes much more sense.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 05:46 AM
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The only other country I know where they use month/day/year is the Philippines.
At home in the Netherlands I always use day/month/year, on forms I write whatever format they want it in, and in letters to the USA I always use the full name of the month to avoid confusion.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 08:20 AM
Bill I
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When I attended school at the University of Wisc, I took many science classes. Where I learned from the professors to write dates in the day/month/year format. I almost always write the date in ddmmmyy or yyyy format, using the first 3 letters of the month - such as 19OCT01. I even do that in my checkbook records. Unless filling something out that gives a specific format for the date.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 09:04 AM
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In written correspondence, I try to remember to write out the whole word for the month, and even give the whole word for the day of the week - - as in Wednesday, 02 January 2002.

I suppose 02.01.02 would do, or better 02 Gen 02 (using Italian just for example here) but why risk the confusion? And true, for anyone making or receiving reservations, there is reasonable familiarity with English - - I have just never thought I should ASSUME that English three letter abbreviations of months will always be recognized. I know it throws ME for a loop, at least briefly, when I have to think through Lu Ma Me Ve Je Sa Di(French, days of the week), for example.

Best wishes,

Old Oct 19th, 2001, 09:16 AM
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The military writes dates out in correspondence using for example:
19 October 2001. Marilyn
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 09:17 AM
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In response to non-Americans who think it's odd the way Americans write the date, I have a follow up q.

How do you state a date in conversation? For me, in most cases, it's month/day.

When's your birthday?

August 13th

When did you get back from Italy?

October 13th

So, for that reason, it makes more sense for me to WRITE 08/13 or 10/13, because that's how I always THINK it.

But to answer the original question, I actually always write the date 13 Oct 01 to avoid confusion (when possible), perhaps since I live abroad & need to deal w. people of lots of different nationalities.

I think it's pretty silly to take the way the date was written as a clue. If these people are "smart" enough to produce Anthrax, they are probably "smart" enough to calculate how they wanted to write the date.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 09:36 AM
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Actually Andrea, this difference seems to correspond with speech as well as the written form, at least when you compare American English with English English. I would describe my birthday, for example, is "the second of January"
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 09:57 AM
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In Hungary they write it year / month / date
Today's date: 01.10.19

Even addresses are done in a reverse order of some sort.
Something similar to this I believe:
USA, 10074, New York, Brooklyn, Atlantic Ave, 1243, Apt. 5F

When in Hungary and in doubt - do it in reverse.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 10:55 AM
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We Canadians do month/date/year as well.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 10:56 AM
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When in Europe or cooresponding with Europeans I write day/month/year, when at home I write month/day/year. This is interesting! I agree that whoever sent those letters probably could decide purposefully which way to write the date, to throw someone off the scent, per se.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 11:09 AM
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While those letters may have been sent by an American (or Americans), I'd say it's pretty silly to conclude that a letter was addressed/sent by an American simply because the address was written the way an American would write it.

In fact, what's interesting about the attacks of 9/11 -- as well as the anthrax letters -- is that no particular group has claimed responsibility whereas, in the past, it's not all that unusual for groups like Hamas or Hezbollah to claim responsibility for their attacks.

That's where the real cowardice lies, in attacking people without saying who you are, or taking responsibility. It's no different than people who verbally attack others here without being willing to say who they are. Attacking people is mean. Attacking people anonymously is both mean and cowardly.

About date formats, I always try to remember to write the date as day/month/year in countries where this is the standard. And, as much as we Americans are used to month/day/year, I think day/month/year is more logical since it moves in sequence from the smallest "unit", a day, to the largest "unit", a year.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 01:05 PM
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There are only 12 months in a year, there are up to 31 days in a month, there are an infinite number of years -- hence 12-31-01 (e.g.). Also, consider the way a calender is used; first you you look at the month, and then you find the day, sometimes it is handy to know the year, hence 12/31/01 (e.g.). I despise dates (and telephone numbers) using periods 31.12.01 (e.g.), it's dashes or slashes for me.
Old Oct 19th, 2001, 03:59 PM
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This Canadian always writes 19 October, 200l and speaks of the date being the 19th of October. And I always write a 7 with a slash mark through the bottom bar.
Old Oct 20th, 2001, 09:21 AM
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Most reservation systems such as Galileo or Viewdata use the ddmmyy system or ddmmmyyyy I am yet to use a travel reservation system that requires the travel date any other way.
Old Oct 20th, 2001, 09:41 AM
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I say "when in Rome," etc. When we are in Europe we do as they do: day/month/year. Also when corresponding with Europeans, as arranging for hotels, etc.

When at home I use the apparently most frequent usage: month/day/year.

Doesn't seem difficult; just most sensible.


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