From “g’day mate” to “bloke” and everything in between, Australia will always surprise you with all the words it is hiding under its sleeves. To be honest, 12 probably won’t even cut it. Also, it might leave you wanting more. So without further ado, here are the 12 Australian slangs you need (well, need is a little bit of an exaggeration–but hey, you might actually need it) to know before heading down under. Also, since we’re taking a word trip here, enjoy these few random shots of Perth!
Let’s say you just landed in Australia and the first thing you’re looking for is food. Since it’s around 7 in the morning, you want to get some breakfast. Down under, it’s called brekky, like Becky with the good hair with an r in the middle except we’re talking about food here and not Beyonce. Then again, you can definitely listen to some Beyonce to keep the momentum of the day going while you’re at it! Speaking of Beyonce, have you heard the latest news about Queen B?
Of course, since there’s no Jollibee in Australia (it’s heartbreaking, yes, I know), you have a few choices left like KFC, McDonald’s and… That’s it, really (if we’re talking about not breaking your budget, I mean). Naturally, you’ll head over to McDonald’s to get some of their awesome chicken (Philippines’ version is still better). Well, you can start saying Maccas because that is how they call it. Maccas! It is short for McDonald’s. Neat, right?
After a delicious sumptuous meal, you’d want to grab something sweet to balance your palate. What better way to do that than with your favorite chocolate? And you guessed it! Here, we call it choccy/ies. Take note, this one’s a bit tricky since the meaning may vary according to the context. As for my friend and I, choccy only means one thing–chocolate. Now, who wants one? I know I do. After all, chocolate is not just a sweet dessert; it’s healthy, too!
After an awesome meal at Maccas and having your sweets, you’d wanna go plan your way around the city. You might want to go to a boutique or H&M, I don’t know. However, you can definitely impress your Australian pals if you say “Are you guys ready to make tracks?” which means “Are you guys ready to go/ head out/ get going?” If you’re wondering why they say Make Tracks, I don’t know. It doesn’t remove the fact that it sounds super cool. Am I right?
For the entire afternoon, you and your mates just went around and killed time as much as you can under the blazing vicious Australian sun (serious note: please wear sunscreen if you are to do this because the sun down under is no joke to begin with). You spent your arvo looking for the best deals, the cheapest clothes, the perfect souvenir and the most amazing view. Next thing you know, the arvo is done and you’re watching the sunset at King’s Park. If you still haven’t figured it out, arvo means afternoon here in the land of Oz. Also, here are the 3 must-see places in Perth, in case you’re interested.
Since you’ve been walking around nonstop the entire time except when you had your brekky and chocky at Maccas, your feet might start feeling sore and tired. Your closed shoes are not helping either as you’re looking to give your feet some breather. Hence, you can decide to make tracks for the nearest store and buy yourself some thongs. Yes, loves! Thongs are what you call flip-flops back there. You can finally scream thongs at the top of your lungs and cross that off that dirty bucket list of yours. And hey, all the more reason to love Australia!
Before sunset, you decided to head out and grab some drinks to celebrate your new journey. After all, you have a new story to add to your growing travel repertoire. So what better way to commemorate this day than with a little bit of booze? And where do you go to get some? Yep! At the bottle-o! Just please don’t forget your passport for identification purposes.
Now that you’re going through the selection of booze in the bottle-o, you’ve decided to get some beers and lagers because they are cheap, unassuming, and get you drunk fast. So you grab your bevies and head to the counter before your mates start asking you to include some whiskey, vodka and rum in the mix. Either way, any alcoholic drink is still called a bevy and you might want to refuse their insistence. Good luck!
Oddly enough, you might be tempted to get some sweets for yourself as you pay for your bevies at the counter. To be honest, I don’t see the logic in this, but it won’t definitely stop you from grabbing a lolly and sucking the heck out of it (that did not sound right). I mean, it’s sweet, it’s round, it has a handle and it takes you back to your childhood and your first lollipop. How can you say no!?
As you head out, you find yourself lost in the middle of nowhere in which your mates have no idea whatsoever where you guys are. Luckily for you, two coppas riding a horse pass by. You stopped one of them to ask for direction and they gladly helped you find your way. After letting the idea of a police officer riding a horse sink in, you find yourself admiring the fact that the slang for a law enforcement officer is a coppa. Not to be mistaken with cuppa, definitely!
To your luck, it started raining and your ride is a bit of a walk. Thus, you and your mates struggled to share the brolly to keep yourselves dry. As predicted, all your strategies did not work since you are all soaking wet by the time you reach your accommodation. And in case you haven’t noticed, brolly is an umbrella down under!
After a long day of fun, you and your friends decided to hit the bed. It was not long before they started organizing a barbie for the coming days. All you can think about is how these people can even stay up after a long day of raving and booze. Knowing yourself, however, you wouldn’t miss a good party and a barbecue sounds like three thousand times the fun. So you signed up for the barbie and started thinking about what to bring for the party. On another note, individuals here bring food to cook in barbie parties. Hey! Your preference could be different than the other, so stop judging! And yes, barbie means barbecue and not Ken’s Barbie–although that would be awesome, too.
As you close your eyes, you say thanks to the universe for the lovely start of a what-could-be the most amazing trip ever. And after spending all those times with your Aussie mates, how could you possibly miss the word Ta? It is the best word out there as it means Thank You (and sometimes, Thank you and Goodbye!). Just like your current status after a long day, thankful and ready to say goodbye. And so, yeah…
Ta! No, seriously, thank you for reading and until next time!
Do you know any more interesting Australian slangs? Tell us about it in the comments!