Guide to New Zealand/Kiwi Slang

My husband and I  chose New Zealand as our first world travel stop because English is spoken throughout New Zealand. We thought it would be a great way to transition into world travel. Even though English is the dominant language spoken by most New Zealanders, there are many words and phrases that are unfamiliar to Americans. Many words and phrases listed here are common to New Zealand, Australia and Great Britain. It may help to become familiar with some of these words/phrases before you visit New Zealand. For example, it would have been good for us to know that their tomato sauce is our ketchup. Our ketchup and noodles weren’t very good, haha!

Bonnet/Boot – hood/trunk of a car
Cam belt – timing belt for a car
Capsicum – bell pepper
Car park – parking lot
Cheers – thanks
Chemist – pharmacy/drug store
Chillybin – cooler
Dairy – small convenience store
Dear – expensive
EFTPOS – Electronic Funds Transfer at Point of Sale; It means that the business accepts debit and credit cards.
Feijoa – a popular garden tree; the fruit is green and has a tangy flavor
Heaps – a lot
Jandals – flip flops
Jelly – jello
Jersey or Jumper – pull over/fleece/sweater
Kiwi – can refer to a New Zealander or the country’s national bird
Knackered – exhausted/tired
Kumara – sweet potatoes/yams
L&P – Lemon & Paeroa, sweet soft drink, Paeroa is the town where they originally manufactured the drink
Mate – friend
Metal road – gravel road
Op Shop – thriftshop
Petrol – gasoline
Pip fruit – stone fruit
Pram – stroller
Rubbish – trash
Sealed road – paved road
Spade – shovel
Sweet as – cool/awesome
Togs – swimsuit
Toilet – bathroom
Tomato sauce – ketchup
Torch – flashlight
Tramping – hiking
Trolley – shopping cart
Zed – the letter “Z”


One comment

  1. Pingback: 20 ways in which New Zealand is different from the United States |

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