Travel blog

Kiwi Phrases Every Traveler to New Zealand Should Know

Posted by YMT Vacations on Apr 23, 2019 9:00:00 AM

Kiwi Phrases  YMT Vacations

New Zealanders—Kiwis for those in the know—are famous for speaking in their own unique dialect. Not convinced? Just listen to any local conversation. Fast and sometimes quite thickly accented, the regional speech is packed with local slang that often requires a translator. To get you started, here are a few phrases used in New Zealand. And always remember, should your conversation stall or you’re unsure what to talk about, rugby is always a safe place to start!

  • Anklebiter—Small child
  • Aotearoa—The Maori name for New Zealand, meaning “land of the long white cloud”
  • Bach—Holiday home, pronounced “batch”
  • Barbie—Barbecue
  • Bit of a dag—A person with character
  • Blimmin’—A curse word similar to “bloody”
  • Bloke—A man
  • Bob’s your uncle—“There you have it”
  • Chocka—Full, overflowing
  • Chrissy pressies—Christmas presents
  • Chuddy—Chewing gum
  • Chur—Thank you
  • Dairy—Convenience store
  • Dear—Expensive
  • Drongo—Fool
  • Dunny—Toilet
  • Eh?—What?
  • Fizzy drink—A soda or pop
  • Footie—Rugby/Football/Soccer
  • Good on ya, mate!—Well done!
  • Handle—A pint of beer
  • Hoon—A hooligan
  • Hot chips—French fries
  • Jandals—Flip flops
  • Judder bar—Speed bump
  • Kia ora—Be well or be healthy; a general greeting
  • Kiwi—A New Zealander
  • Knackered—Tired or exhausted
  • Mate—Friend
  • Munted—Broken
  • Pakaru—Broken
  • Plonk—Cheap wine
  • Scarfie—University student
  • Serviette—Napkin
  • Snarler—Sausage
  • Sprog—Child
  • Stubbie—A can of beer, or the very short pants worn by rugby players
  • Sunnies—Sunglasses
  • Sweet as—Cool; awesome
  • Ta—Thank you
  • Takeaways—Fast food
  • Tea—Dinner
  • Togs—Swimsuit
  • Tomato sauce—Ketchup
  • Torch—Flashlight
  • Tramping—Hiking
  • Tu meke—Great Job
  • Ute—Pick-up Truck
  • Waka—The Maori word for canoe. You’ll also hear a bus referred to as a “land waka”
  • Wobbly—A temper tantrum
  • Wop-wops—The middle of nowhere, off the beaten path
  • Yeah, nah bro—No, thank you

You can yack it up with the Kiwis as you tour New Zealand and Australia with YMT Vacations. Experience the Great Barrier Reef, cruise Milford Sound and view the Sydney Opera House. To make your arrangements, call your travel professional or YMT Vacations at 1-888-756-9072.

Topics: Travel Tips, Senior Travel, Australia, New Zealand