You’ll be all good when you arrive in New Zealand. You’ll meet some hard case Kiwi bro’s around and about the wops and maybe you’ll even be invited down to the bach for a mean feed, maybe a hangi and some pavlova. Most blokes are pretty choice, but if you’re knackered and they invite you to crash at their joint, it’s a good idea to suss it out first. Tu Meke! Make sure you wear your stubbies and jandals though or I reckon you could feel a bit out of place with your new mates. If you’re too skint to hook yourself up with the goods, just chill, she’ll be right eh.
If you have no idea what is being said here, then you’ve come to the right place. You will find that in New Zealand, everyone transfers the above slang into every day conversation, all while speaking extremely quickly and with a funny accent. It will feel like they aren’t speaking English at all, and while at first this may be overwhelming, in no time you’ll pick it up and be conversing in the local language with only a few misunderstandings!
We’ve included a short Kiwi slang dictionary here to get you chatting with the locals.
Here are some examples of our Kiwi Lingo:-
A feed – A meal.
I'm going to grab a feed at McDonalds. (Meaning: I’m going to have a meal at McDonalds.)
All good/No worries – This generally means “everything is fine”, “no problem” or in place of “you’re welcome.”
You: How was your date on Friday?
Your Kiwi friend: All good bro, no worries. (Meaning: It was good thanks, everything went well.)
You: Thanks for buying me a drink.
Your Kiwi friend: All good/no worries. (Meaning: You’re welcome.)
As – used to emphasise something, if something is good as, it is really good.
You: Did you see that guy fall off his skateboard?
Your Kiwi friend: Oh yeah bro it was funny as! (Meaning: Yes I did, it was very funny.)
Bach – A holiday house, also referred to as a Crib, in the lower South Island.
Biff it – Means to throw something.
You: Do you want this old book?
Your Kiwi friend: Na bro just biff it in the bin. (Meaning: No thanks, just throw it in the trash.)
Bogan – Refers to someone who is, or gives the idea that they are uneducated and unsophisticated. Normally seen wearing baggy pants, skate shoes, drinking cheap alcohol and driving a loud, fast car.
Chilly Bin – A cooler bin, used for keeping drinks or food cold when outside.
Chips – Potato Crisps.
Chur – Generally used in place of “thank you” but can be used in certain situations to mean “OK.”
You: I saved some dinner for you.
Your kiwi friend: Chur bro! (Meaning: Thanks man!)
Hangi – A traditional Maori feast, cooked under the ground with the hot embers of a fire. Pronounced Hung-y
Hard case – a funny person.
You: That guy was so funny.
Your Kiwi friend: Yeah he’s a hard case eh, what a crack up. (Meaning: Yes he was very funny, he made me laugh a lot.)
Heaps – means “a lot.”
You: Have you been there before?
Your Kiwi friend: Yeah I’ve been there heaps. (Meaning: Yes, I’ve been there a lot.)
Hot Chips – French fries.
Kai – Maori word for food.
You: I’m very hungry.
Your kiwi friend: Yeah me too, let’s go and grab some kai. (Meaning: Yeah me too, let’s go and get some food.)
Jandals – Flip flops/Thongs.
Kiwi - A New Zealander. The little green fruit is normally referred to as “Kiwifruit.”
Knackered – describes someone or something being exhausted or broken.
You: Did you have a good day?
Your kiwi friend: Yeah bro but I’m knackered eh. (Meaning: Yes thanks but I’m very tired.)
Not even – loosely means “no way” but can be used in various contexts.
Did you know I’m going to climb Mount Everest?
Your Kiwi friend: Not even! (Meaning: No way!)
Munted – Broken or destroyed. Many people referred to Christchurch as being “munted” after the earthquakes occurred there in 2011.
Puku – Maori word for stomach. Pronounced poo-koo
That guy has a huge puku or If you eat too much chocolate you’ll get a fat puku!
Shout – To buy something for someone else, without expecting payment in return. “To treat” someone to something.
I’ll shout you a drink bro! (Meaning: I’ll buy you a drink!)
Skint – Short of money, poor.
Oh I can’t come out for dinner, im totally skint! (Meaning: I can’t afford to come out for dinner, I have no spare money.)
Sweet As – Similar translation to no worries or all good. Means “no problem” or in some cases “okay.”
You: I’ll meet you at the cinema at 7pm.
Your kiwi friend: Sweet as! (Meaning: Ok, sounds good!)
She’ll be right – Everything will be ok.
You: Do you think we should have left those screws loose?
Your kiwi friend: Ah she’ll be right mate! (Meaning: Ah it will be ok mate!)
Tea – Generally means dinner or supper, if someone is referring to the drink, tea, they will usually say “a cup of tea.”
Come over for tea tomorrow! (Meaning: Come over for dinner tomorrow!)
Tiki Tour – a sight-seeing tour, with no particular destination. Pronounced ticky
Togs – swimming costume/swimsuit.
Tomato Sauce/Sauce – Tomato ketchup.
Can you pass me the sauce bro? (Meaning: Pass me the tomato sauce)
Tu meke – Maori for awesome or good job. Pronounced too-mecky
You: I finished painting the bathroom.
Your kiwi friend: Tu meke! (Meaning: Good job!)