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  • Writer's pictureAndrea Gallier

NZ Adventure Chapter 10: Lollies, Utes, and Chilly Bins

It’s been a busy month… After lots of searching, I found a second job at a pretzel place and have been spending my time learning the intricacies of pretzel and manakish making (a manakish is a delicious middle-eastern dish) and settling into my new flat. What’s a flat you ask? Okay, maybe you aren’t asking but just go with me here- it’s an apartment. You see, Kiwis have their own slang and ways of saying things and lucky for you, I’m here to translate for you. Here are some things Kiwis say differently:


And instead of "roommates" or "suitemates" they usually say "flatmates"


"Ute" is short for "Utility Vehicle"


On a side note, my favorite New Zealand 'lollies' so far are chocolate fish and pineapple lumps.


This one is probably my favorite- "Chilly Bin" just sounds so much cuter than "Cooler" right??


I may never get over this one. I'm just picturing someone water tubing on a giant, american-style biscuit...


Okay this one just doesn't make any sense- the plug is what you put into the outlet so calling the outlet a "Power Plug" is kind of confusing. Sorry NZ, I'm calling an american victory on this one.


And then British people say "pavement" but it's all the same to me...


Sometimes people say "rubbish" instead of "trash" in the US but if you go to a restaurant the bin will usually be labeled "trash". In NZ they are usually labeled "rubbish".


Kiwis say "hiking" too but "tramping" is more common. If you tell an american that you are going "tramping" you might get some questioning looks though...


Usually i'd argue that Kiwis have cuter sounding terms for things but "Flip Flops" sounds much cuter than "Jandals" to me...


And full sized beds are called "Double Beds" (Queen and King sized are the same here). Also if you try to find a comforter for a single bed good luck- duvet covers are the norm.

Just New Zealand terms:

If a Kiwi says they're "keen" to do something it means they definitely want to.

Honestly who knows? Yeah nah i'll get back to you on this one...

From what I understand this is like a story or a good conversation?

"Sweet as" is kind of like saying "cool" or "awesome". Kiwis occasionally add the 'as' to other words too for emphasis.

I haven't heard this one used organically too much, but I've seen a lot of signs use this Māori term for "Hello"

Annnd Lastly:

This was probably one of the first language differences I noticed when I arrived in NZ. In the US, you generally 'hire' people and 'rent' items, so it was a little funny to me when the hostel I was staying at had a sign saying that you could 'hire' a towel or a blanket.

So there are some of the Kiwi terms and slang I've learned in the past (almost) 4 months! Now if you'll excuse me i'm going to go do some tramping...

#NewZealand #Auckland #NewZealandSlang #Language #Chapter10

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