We have just welcomed to our home an international exchange student from the Middle East. When I read the information she included on her program application, I added her birthday to our calendar: June 5.
But here's the problem: Her birthday is May 6.
How could I have gotten that wrong? Her birthday was listed on the application as 6/5/9_. In the U.S., that means June 5. However, in the rest of the world it means May 6.
Yet today I traveled to Canada and back. On both the Canadian and the U.S. customs forms, I was asked to provide my birthday in this format: day-month-year. Having the month-day-year habit, I had to cross out what I originally wrote and start over.
What is the solution to my confusion? A global standard that people in the U.S. agree to? Spelling out the months at all times?
I guess I will just have to confirm the date before I schedule any birthday parties.
What do you recommend?