When you’re driving around on your Australian road trip holiday, you’ll probably notice the lingo is a little … not what you’re used to. Indeed, since Australia was first colonised by Europeans in the late 1700s, somewhere along the line the English language took a turn to give local Aussies a language of their very own.
To help prepare you for the road ahead, here is a quick Australian-English dictionary.
50 k’s south of Woop Woop
The term ‘Woop Woop’ refers to a small town you don’t really need to know the name of. If you are ’50 k’s (kilometres) south of Woop Woop’, it means you are in the middle of nowhere.
Good/excellent (and our favourite on this list)!
Away with the pixies
Dreaming, day dreaming or dazed in some fashion.
Not a famous doll, but actually a barbecue.
More or less the same as ‘ace’.
Used to intensify a statement. Similar to ‘very’. For instance, “You bloody drongo (see below).”
Also the same as ‘ace’.
Speedos swimming trunks.
Areas of flora (not necessarily just bushes).
Full. You may also hear ‘chock-full’.
Puke/vomit – ‘chunder’ like the men Down Under! Also known as a ‘liquid laugh’.
Used when a person is surprised or needs to exclaim. For instance, “Crikey, this scenery is beautiful!”
Your shopping receipt.
A dim-witted or dull individual.
An outdoor toilet (such as a long drop).
Trustworthy, fair and/or honest.
Going very fast. Generally as fast as possible.
Aussie rules football – not soccer.
A greeting. Short for good day.
Go off like a frog in a sock
Get very angry.
An alcoholic beverage, typically beer.
Lots. A large amount.
A young kangaroo
Kangaroos loose in the top paddock
Unintelligent. “He’s got a few kangaroos loose in the top paddock.”
Tired, generally very tired.
London to a brick
Friend. Even if it’s a stranger.
Mosquito. Often combined with ‘bloody’, e.g. “Bloody mozzies!”
If something is OK, achievable or otherwise acceptable, you would say “No worries” or “No drama”, possibly finished with ‘mate’.
A rude/unsophisticated/rough person with poor social skills.
On the piss
Consuming alcohol/having a drinks night.
Rattlesnake in a lucky dip
Used in conjunction with ‘as welcome as a’, ‘as popular as a’ or similar. Emphasises that the subject was not welcome/popular.
To think or figure. E.g., “I reckon you take a left just up ahead.”
An inexperienced surfer.
She’ll be right
Similar to ‘no worries’. Generally used to say something will be alright. For example, if you run out of petrol but an Aussie is there to save the day, he or she might say, “She’ll be right, mate. I can help ya, no worries.”
Excited, happy or positive in some way.
Definitely not slim underwear. Here in Oz, ‘thong’ means ‘flip flops’.
A can of beer (also known as a stubbie) or small, tin boat.
Pick-up truck/utility vehicle.
The state of Victoria.
Overly excited. If you “throw a wobbly”, you are reacting a little over the top.
An aggressive or uncouth person. A ‘yobbo’ tends to more frequently be a young person.
A long time/ages.