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English is spoken throughout New Zealand, however there are many local acronyms and phrases that may confuse foreign visitors. Phrases in NZ tend to differ from those across the ditch (in Australia).
All Blacks - the New Zealand national men's rugby union team, so named for their black uniforms. Nicknames for New Zealand national sports teams are generally "Black x's" or "x Blacks" for mens teams (e.g. Black Caps for cricket) and "x Ferns" for womens teams (e.g. Silver Ferns for netball).
Bathroom - Place in the house etc where you will find a bath or shower, handbasin but particularly for N. Americans, a toilet is not necessarily present in this room. (See Toilet, below)
"Bob's your uncle": "Well, there you have it."
Chillybin - An insulated portable bin known as an 'esky' in Australia or a 'cooler' in the United States.
Coaster - Resident of West Coast, South Island.
Crook: Quite ill.
Dairy - a corner shop or small convenience store.
Dag : hard case; joker; comedian, as in "Joe Blow's a bit of a dag isn't he?" "A bit of a dag mate! - He's the whole sheep's ar*e"
Entree - Entrees on the menu will not be the main course. Entrees are the appitizers, the main courses will be labeled "mains"
EFTPOS - Electronic Funds Transfer at Point Of Sale. It means that the business accepts debit and credit cards.
Get off the grass: exclamation of disbelief; equivalent to "stop pulling my leg", "get outta here", and "no way"
Gumboots: rubber boots, wellingtons, wellies
Hoon - A hooligan although sometimes used to refer to the nature of people's driving.
“I’ve been internalizing a really complicated situation in my head”: I've been doing some hard thinking. Watch the New Zealand Traffic Authority video on YouTube: http://youtu.be/dIYvD9DI1ZA
Kiwi - Relating to New Zealand. The kiwi bird is the New Zealand mascot and anything that is kiwi is very New Zealand, be it people or customs.
JAFA- an Aucklander as in "just another friggin Aucklander" (Only replace "friggin" with "fabulous" if you live in Auckland); derived from the term jaffa, which is a popular chocolate-orange confectionary
Jandals - A pair of rubber sandals also referrred to as 'thongs' in Australia (these are not an item of underwear!)
Jumper: woollen sweater
Lemonade : Sprite, 7Up or similar drinks.
Loopy - A Tourist. More common in South Island. Refers to tourists driving around the island in a 'loop' (circular direction). Please also ensure this does not also refer to the driving of tourists in New Zealand
L&P: fizzy soda water, Lemon & Paeroa (L&P); originally lemon flavoured spring water from the town of Paeroa, but this is no longer the case.
Metal Road : a country road (usually) with a gravel or shingle surface
Mainland - South Island (if refered to by a south island resident). In relation to offshore islands however, it refers to both the North and South Islands collectively
Mains - The main courses on restaurant menus. The "entree" section will be appitizers.
Nappy : diape
New Zealand New: Cars are not manufactured in New Zealand. If a car is imported new to New Zealand (most often these days with special packages for New Zealanders) it is said to be "New Zealand New". If a car has been owned before import it is not and can often be trouble.
Road Snail - A Camper Van (RV)
Rubber - An Eraser :)
"Sweet as . . ." : When something is extraordinariy good it is "sweet as . . ."; can be followed with "mate". Q: How are things with you? A: Sweet as, Mate.
"See ya later" - common expression used when leaving. Does not imply any obligation to meet later
"She'll be right": Everything is going to work out fine. Q: What happened to your leg? A: Flipped my bloody tractor, but she'll be right, mate.
"She'll (or she'd) come right": Alternate usage of "she'll be right" (See above). Q (from the doctor): Why did you wait so long to come in? Your leg is turning green. A: Aww, Doc, I thought she'd come right. (Also, See "We'll see you right" below)
Take Away - Food picked up from a restaurant and taken home to be eaten. What Americans would call "take out".
Toilet -The room in the house etc where you will find a toilet. If this is what you need, ask directly for a toilet, not for a bathroom.
Togs - A bathing or swim suit. Referred to as a 'cossie' in Australi
"We'll see you right": You have our personal guarantee; often offered by used car salesmen. Q: Are you sure this car is "New Zealand New" (See above)? A: If it ain't, Mate, we'll see you right.
"Yeah nah, Bro": 1) yes; as in Q: Do you have a hangover, Mate? A: Yeah nah, Bro, I'm bloody crook. (See Crook, above); and 2) no; as in Q: Do you have a hangover, Mate? A: Yeah nah, Bro, sweet as. (See Sweet As, above).
Several Maori phrases are commonly used in New Zealand English
Aotearoa - New Zealand. Often translated as "The Land of the Long White Cloud"
Kia ora - Hello (informal). Literally means "be healthy".
Tena koe - Hello to one person (formal)
Tena korua - Hello to two people (formal)
Tena koutou - Hello to three or more people (formal)
Haere mai - Welcome
Haere ra - Farewell (said to the person who is leaving)
E noho ra - Farewell (said to the person who is staying)
Haka - Tradtional Maori war dance, made notable by the All Blacks performing one before every international rugby match.
Iwi - Maori tribe
Koha - a gift or a present. In modern usage, it usually refers to a donation of some kind.
Marae - Traditional Maori tribal meeting place, today characterised by their meeting houses with ornate carvings.
Wharenui - Maori meeting house on a marae. Literally means "big house"
Pakeha - Typically a European New Zealander
Tapu - sacred, taboo
Te Reo Maori - the Maori language. "Te Reo Pakeha" is the English language.
Whanau - Family, Relatives, Close friends. Those you rely on for support.