Kiwi Slang

Do you know your stubbies from your jandals?

Ad – Commercial, short for advertisement​

Bach – A holiday home, pronounced batch. More commonly it is Kiwis in the North Island who refer to them as a ‘bach’ and in the South Island refer to them as a ‘crib’

Blimmin‘ – Another way of saying the cuss word “bloody” – e.g. “Blimmin’ Heck!”

Bloody – A type of cuss word, used to emphasise feelings and has nothing to do with blood – e.g. “it was a bloody good night out”, “he is a bloody idiot”, “I don’t bloody know”

Bloke – Man – e.g. “see that bloke over there”

Bob’s your Uncle – “There you have it”

Bogan – A person with an unsophisticated background, or whose speech, clothing, attitude and behaviour exemplify a lack of manners and education. Google “Outrageous Fortune”, a NZ TV Show… this helps give you a visual!

Box of Fluffies – In response to “how are you” and you are well – e.g. “I’m a box of fluffies today, thank you”

Bro – Brother or good friend, see also “Mate”

Builder – A carpenter/chippy

Buggar – A word used for disappointment, e.g. when you tell someone your car broke down they respond, “buggar!”. Also can be used to refer to an older man – e.g. “did you see the old buggar yesterday?”

Caravan – A mobile home trailer towed behind a vehicle

Carked It – Died – e.g. “Bob carked it” or “the old car carked it yesterday”

Chick – Girl/woman, e.g. “Thanks chick” or “Go and ask that chick over there”. Also used as “chicky” e.g. “That chicky-babe over there”

Chips – Potato chips, or crisps, if you’re from the UK. See also “hot chips”.

Chippy – Carpenter/Builder

Chocka – Full or overflowing “the bus is chocka today!”

Choice – When pleased with something – e.g. “I got you a ticket to the rugby” you would respond with “choice bro!”

Chook – Short for Chicken. Also used in reference to an older lady e.g. “the old chook over there”

Chur – Thank you – as in “chur bro!”

​Crack Up – Used as a noun and a verb, when referring to someone that is funny – e.g. “Bob is such a crack up” and “He told a joke and I just cracked up”

​Crash Here – Sleep here – e.g. “you can crash here tonight”

Creek – Small stream / very small river

Crib – A holiday home. More commonly it is Kiwis in the South Island who refer to them as a ‘crib’ and in the North Island refer to them as a ‘bach’.

Cuppa – Refers to a cup of tea or coffee – we do tend to speak quickly & merge our words, so “cup of tea” became “cuppa tea”.

​Cuzzie or Cuz – Cousin. Also used instead of “Bro”

Dag – Someone who is funny, e.g. “that Bob is such a dag!”. Also the yucky bit of wool that hangs around a sheep’s back end covered in poo – e.g. “that sheep has dags” or “I have to dag the sheep” means to cut away the bad wool

Dairy – Corner/Convenience Store/Newsagent

Dear – Expensive – “that shop is dear”

Dole – Unemployment benefit

Dunny – Toilet/WC – e.g.”I’m going to go use the dunny”

Duvet – Doona / Comforter

Eh – Used at the end of a sentence when you’re not really asking a question, more providing a statement that you want confirmation for such as “it’s really hot today, eh”. Pronounced ‘ay’. Sometimes used as a question on its own: “Eh?” as in “pardon?”

Feijoa – A popular garden tree and the fruit is commonly eaten which is green, sweet and sour

Fizzy Drink – Soda/Pop

Flannel – Face Cloth

Flat Out – to go fast, “Oh man, he was just roaring down the motorway going flat out!”. AKA “Oh man, he was going very fast down the highway”

Flog – Steal – “I might flog it today”

Footie – Rugby/Football/Soccer – e.g. “I’m going to watch the footie today”

​G String – Thong style underwear

Gawk – Stare e.g. “stop gawking at me”

​Glad Wrap – The brand name of a cling film product, many Kiwi’s will say ‘Glad Wrap’ in reference to cling film regardless of what brand they are using.

GC – Good chap. Kiwis will commonly change the word “chap” to another word starting with C which we will not write here in case of causing offence!

​Good as Gold – Thanking someone for something – e.g. “thanks for doing that, good as gold”. Responding that you well when asked – e.g. “how are you doing”, “good as gold thank you”

Gumboots – Wellingtons / Outdoor waterproof boots

Haka – Not slang, but it’s something we talk about! Maori war dance, more “famously” known through The All Blacks rugby team

Hangi – Also not slang, but you will hear about it while here! The traditional style of Maori cooking undergound

​Hard Bro – as in “Hard Bro, hard” basically used to show agreement with a friend

​Hard Case – Funny person – “Yeah, he’s quite a hard case”

​Hard Out – “Oh yeah hard out!” meaning “I totally agree!”

​Hard Yakka – Hard work – “it’s hard yakka but worth it!”

​Heaps – A lot/lots of something – e.g. “yeah there are heaps of sheep in New Zealand” – not literally piles of sheep!

Hoon – Hooligan/young crazy driver of a car. Commonly referred to as “those blimmin’ hoons out on the street”.

​Hot Chips – French Fries – literally, hot potato chips!

Hottie – Hot water bottle and also in reference to a good looking person – e.g. “check out that hottie over there”

Hungus – Hungry person eating all the food – e.g. “stop being a hungus and leave us some!”

Ice Block – Ice Pop/Ice Lolly

Jam – Fruit preserve/Jelly

Jandals – Flip Flops/Thongs if you’re Aussie

Jelly – Jello

​Jersey or Jumper – Pull over/fleece/sweater

​Judder Bar – Speed Bump

Keen/Keen as – In positive response in wanting to do something – e.g. when asked if you want to go to the movies tomorrow, “oh yeah, I am keen as”. Also is used like a simile – e.g. as keen as pie

Kiwi – New Zealanders – Also a native bird to New Zealand – Also shoe polish brand – Also a fruit! Note that Kiwis refer to the fruit as a kiwifruit – please don’t tell us you’re going to eat a kiwi for lunch…

Knackered – Tired/Exhausted

Lamingtons – Vanilla Sponge squares, dipped in chocolate and then rolled in coconut, served with whipped cream and jam. Cam’s mum makes these for us – YUM

Laughing Gear – Your mouth, commonly used when being given food to eat – e.g. “Get your laughing gear around that”

​Long Drop – Small outhouse over a pit, with no flushing mechanism. Common on tramping trails and older baches

Mare – Short for Nightmare when you are awake and things are not going well – e.g. “I’m having an absolute mare at work today”

Mate – Friend, buddy – “Thanks Mate”

Motorway – Highway

Munted – Broken/not working/damaged. Also used for someone who’s had a bit too much to drink

Nappy – Diaper

​No Worries – It’s OK / Not a Problem

​Not Even – Not true

​Not Even Ow – Ow Not really a meaning to this, just gives the phrase being used more emphasis

​O.E. – Overseas Experience – a common gap year/s holiday that many Kiwi’s take

​’P’ – Methamphetamine/Ice – called “P” due to the Pseudoephedrine used to manufacture the drug

​Pack a Sad – Have a temper-tantrum – e.g. “don’t ask Bob, he’s packing a sad”

​Pakaru (puk-ar-roo) – Not working/broken

​Pakeha – A white New Zealander – not Maori

Pavlova – Meringue, smothered in whipped cream and fresh fruit

Pharlap – Famous horse born in New Zealand during the 1920s (see him at Te Papa Museum)

Plonk – Bottle of wine – normally a cheap variety​

Piss –  Great multi-use word. 1. Alcohol, e.g. “I’m on the piss” 2. “He’s taking the piss” – he’s taking advantage 3. Piss Up – a party, e.g. “Bob is having a piss up tomorrow”

Popsicle – Ice block/ice lolly – this is a common brand name however many Kiwis refer to ice blocks as popsicles

Post Code – Zip Code

Pram – Stoller/pushchair

Pretty – We use this two ways – to tell you that you are pretty/beautiful (all of our passengers are!) or to over extend “that shop is pretty dear”, “yeah it’s pretty expensive”

Quack – Doctor – e.g. “I’m off to see the quack today”

​Red Bands – A truly iconic brand of gumboots (wellingtons) made in New Zealand. “Come on, grab your Red Bands and I’ll take ya out on a tour of the farm”

Ring – Telephone someone – e.g. “I’ll give them a ring now”

Scarfie – University Student, particularly from Otago University

​See Ya Later! – Saying goodbye to someone but does not particularly mean that you will see them later

Serviette – Napkin

​She’ll be right/She’ll come right – It will be OK/It’s not a problem

Shorts – Short pants

Sickie – Taking a sick day off work/or pretending to be sick and not going to work – e.g. “he’s throwing a sickie today”

Skint – Broke / poor / no money

Skull – Drink all of your beverage (normally alcoholic) in one go without a breath

Smoko​ – 15 min smoke break, no smoking necessary, can just mean a break – e.g. “Let’s go for smoko and finish that when we get back”

Snarler – Sausage. Also known as a snag in some places​

Squizz – Take a look – “Here let me have a squizz”

Sprog – Child/Children – e.g. “I have a couple of sprogs”

Spud – Potato

​Stink One – A phrase of disappointment – when told that there were no mince pies left a response may be, “oh stink one”

​Straight Up – When someone is being honest – e.g. “straight up bro, it definitely happened”

Stubbie – Can of beer or very short pants that men wear, especially farmers and rugby players

​Sunday Driver – Slow driver normally well below speed limit

Sunnies – Sunglasses

Suss – To investigate, short for suspect – “I need to suss it out first” or “he does look a bit suss”

​Sweet As – Cool or awesome, also can be used as “it’s ok” or “not a problem”

​Ta – Thank you, e.g. when someone hands you something you asked for, you respond with “ta”. Also commonly used when teaching young children you want something that they are holding, you hold your hand out and say “ta”, such as an advanced thank you for giving me what you are holding

Takeaways – Fast food

Tea – Dinner – “what’s for tea tonight?”

​The Boonies – Middle of nowhere

Thongs – G-String style underwear – not what the Aussies call jandals!

Togs – Swimsuit

Toilet – When asking where a bathroom is – e.g. “where is the toilet?”

​Tomato Sauce – Ketchup

Torch – Flashlight

Tramping – Hiking

​Tu Meke (Two Mek-ee) – Awesome, good job

Twink – White-out/correction pen

Ute – Pick up truck

Waka – Maori Canoe – also what we commonly refer to the bus as – “land waka”

​We’ll see you right – An assurance that you will do good by the person you are speaking to

Westie – Referring to West Aucklanders, who many believe appear to be bogans. Again, Google “Outrageous Fortune”…

Wobbly – Temper-tantrum. Used in reference such as, “then he threw a massive wobbly”

​Wop-Wops – Middle of nowhere

​Yeah, nah bro – This is an indecisive phrase, normally followed by an explanation

​You alright? – A question used in greeting, basically meaning “how are you?”, not asking if you are sick

​You’re all good – It’s OK, thank you

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February 15, 2023

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February 7, 2023

Best Time of Our Lives! Our driver Cam was amazing. He was organized, always on time, great manners, very informative of all the places we saw, the things we did, the people of New Zealand, and all the questions we threw at him. We could…


Brockport Study Abroad 2020 Cam is the best tour guide!! He brought our study abroad group all the way from the South Island to the North Island in 3 weeks! Cam was so knowledgeable on everything and I'm so glad that we were able to have…


City by City 20 Day Tour Through New Zealand We traveled through New Zealand from the South to the North Island - all in 3 weeks! I was with a study abroad program, but I think this type of experience with tour guides like Cam would be e…


Brockport College Study Abroad Travel Group Absolute Aotearoa is absolutely the way to go. Our study abroad group of 15 traveled for 20 days with this company. Cam was not only one of the best people on the trip, he and Amanda went above…


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Absolute Aotearoa - Absolute Best Way to Tour New Zealand! I recently went on a faculty-led study abroad with my university where we studied New Zealand's culture, and we toured all over the North and South islands with Absolute Aotearoa…