When someone first asked me, “Do you have a brolly? It’s raining!” I was as clueless as a pirate wearing two eye-patches.
Kiwi slang can be daunting not just for new migrants but seasoned settlers.
Don’t get caught off guard at the next work barbie. (Read on if you are not too sure what a barbie is.)
Familiarize yourself with this Kiwi speak.
Understanding Kiwi terminology and sayings
Here are some of the most commonly used Kiwi words, sayings and phrases that confuse new migrants the most.
Snowed under: very busy
Anklebiter: A toddler or small child
Bach: A holiday home
Barbie: A barbecue or shortened to BBQ.
Banger: A sausage
Bicky: A biscuit, also called crackers
Bash: A party
Cardie: A cardigan. Also called a jumper.
Coconut: A pacific islander (Offensive word)
Chilly Bin: An ice box for keeping beer or food cool. (similar to an esky in Australia)
Across the ditch: In Australia. Also referred to as Down Under
Curry Muncher: An Indian. (Yes that’s what they call all of you from the subcontinent.)
Dole: Unemployment benefit or social welfare payment paid by WINZ (Work and Income New Zealand.)
Dairy: A small shop in the neighbourhood. Also known as the corner store.
Fag: A cigarette. Also used as “Let’s go for a fag”, which refers to smoking.
P: refers to the drug Methamphetamine
Footy: Rugby or football. Also refers to rugby union or rugby league
G’day or gidday: It’s a short form for Good Day.
Mate: friend. It is common to call a stranger a mate.
Aye or eh: Pronounced as letter “a”, Kiwis use this instead of a question mark, to convert a normal sentence into a question. For example, “It’s hot, eh”. Also used in place of ‘what’ if the listener didn’t hear you or doesn’t understand what you are saying.
Heaps: A lot of something. For e.g., my backyard has heaps of firewood.
Hoodie: A jacket with a hood.
Jandals: Thongs, flip-flops
Kia Ora: Hello in the Maori language. Propounced as ki-ora.
L&P: New Zealand’s brand of soda. Stands for Lemon and Paeroa
Oi: To get someone’s attention if someone is within sight but not paying attention
Old Lady: Used for wife or girlfriend
Old man: Used for father
On the piss: Gone out for drinking
Pissed: 1. Drunk, intoxicated. 2. Angry (He is really pissed at you)
Pom or Pommie: Used for a person from the UK
Tall poppy syndrome: This is a phrase used for commonly observed New Zealand attitude of being modest about one’s achievements.
She’ll be alright: Another trait of New Zealanders who like to get on with life and dealing with problems without whining or complaining.
Tangi: A Maori word which means funeral ceremony. Not to be confused with Hangi which is a traditional Maori way of cooking.
Haka: A Maori dance which you will usually see before the beginning of a rugby match.
Trolley: Shopping cart.
Truckie: A truck driver.
(Source: NZ Guide)
Do you know any other slang but confusing words used by New Zealanders? Share them in comments below.