Dictionary of New Zealand Slang
Kiwi Words, Colloquialisms and Phrases
The following is a list of expression and words commonly used in New Zealand followed by their equivalent definition, meaning and example sentences of each one.
NOTE: Some of these words, phrases and expressions are used in Australia and Britain too.
A into G: to get going (ass/arse into gear)
- Hurry up and get your A into G, we're late.
A&P fair: Agricultural and Pastoral fair. There are two sides to this fair, one for the farmers and the other with rides and attractions for the rest of the public.
- We're off to the A&P fair this weekend.
Across the ditch: Across the Tasman Sea … the sea between New Zealand and Australia
- She is no longer living in New Zealand. She's moved across the ditch.
Ads / adverts: TV commercials / advertisements
- Why is it that the volume always goes up when the adverts come on.
Afghan: a type of biscuit/cookie made from crushed cornflakes mixed with cocoa and covered in chocolate icing.
- I have just made a fresh batch of Afghans if you want some.
After match: social occasion after a rugby match usually involving a lot of beer
- Players from both teams forgot their differences in the after match.
Afternoon tea: light meal of finger-foods and tea served between lunch and dinner
- We went to my grandmother's place for afternoon tea.
Agro: angry, aggressive, aggravated
- Calm down, you seem a bit agro right now.
All Blacks: The official name of the New Zealand National Rugby team… the best in the world!
- The All Blacks have beaten Australia yet again in the international test match played last weekend.
Anklebiter: toddler, kids
- Those anklebiters are a awfully quiet. I bet they're up to no good.
- Our group did the anti-clockwise tour of the gardens starting at the right.
ANZAC Day: (ANZAC = Australia and New Zealand Army Corps). This is a public holiday (25th of April) to remember our soldiers who have fallen in war.
- We got up well before sunrise on ANZAC day so we could be at the dawn ceremony.
Aotearoa: The Maori name for New Zealand.
- I'm proud to have been born in Aotearoa
Away with the fairies: on a different planet; day dreaming
- He didn't pay attention to anything you just said because he's away with the fairies right now.
- You can tell he is an Aussie because of his nasal accent.
Bach: small (often modest) holiday home near the beach (see also crib)
- We spent a relaxing weekend at the bach and did some fishing.
Bang on: right in the middle; dead centre; correct, exactly at.
- He threw his boot at a noisy bird in the tree and got it bang on.
Beaut: good; great; a lot of fun (originally from beautiful).
- How was my weekend? It was beaut!
Big bickies: lots of money
- He's getting paid big bickies at his new job.
- I'm off to the supermarket to buy some biscuits.
Bit of a worry: a troubling event, person or thing.
- The car's a bit of a worry because it has been making a rattling sound all day.
Bloke: a man; a guy.
- I met a bloke at the pub last night who said he selling fresh snapper.
Bloody: very very
- It's bloody cold outside today.
Bloody-hell: all-purpose expletive
- Bloody hell! What do you think you're doing with my wife?!
Bludge: to live off the generosity of others, to sponge
- Stop bludging from me and go get your own lunch!
- My friend always tries to bludge a cigarrette from me.
- I have to go to the bog first so wait for me.
Bomb: (referring to car) very old car in disrepair
- I'm not going to the wedding in your bomb, we should take a taxi instead.
Bonk: to have sex with
- They bonked all night and didn't get up until after midday.
Bonnet: car hood
- He put the bonnet up to check out what was making a noise in the engine.
Boot: car trunk
- Just throw your stuff in the boot and we'll get going.
Box of birds: cheerful, happy, very good
- I slept very well last night and this morning I feel like a box of birds
Boy racer: a young man that likes to show off his fast car
- Those boy racers are making a lot of noise out the front of our house.
Brassed off: annoyed
- I was really brassed off by the way he treated me.
- Wake up kids, it's time for brekkie.
Bugger all: not much, very little
- It looks like we'll have to go to the supermarket because there's bugger all in the fridge.
Bulk: Many, a lot of – late 80's early 90's expression
- There were bulk people at the party last night.
Bum: rear end, butt
- I went horse riding yesterday and now my bum is sore.
Bumper: fender (of a car)
- How did you get that dent in the bumper?
Bun-fight: social gathering with food
- It's time we got everyone together and had a bun-fight.
Bung: not working any more
- My bike is bung. I think I'll have to take it to the repair shop.
Bush: natural forest filled with native trees
- He spend a week in the bush hunting wild pigs.
Bust a gut: make an intense effort
- He busted his gut to get the job done right and the boss didn't even care.
Buzzy Bee: an iconic wooden toy in the shape of buzzy bee with wheels that makes a clacking noise as you drag it along the ground.
- The little girl happily pulled the Buzzy Bee along behind her.
Cadge: to ask for what someone else has (similar to bludge)
- My workmate is always trying to cadge some of my lunch off me.
Candy floss: cotton candy
- Kids love eating candyfloss.
Caravan: trailer, mobile home
- We stayed in our caravan next to the beach.
Cardy: short for cardigan, a woolen piece of clothing
- It's getting chilly. I might go get my cardy on.
Car park: parking lot
- The car park was full so I had to park on a nearby street.
Carked it: died, kicked the bucket
- You know old Billy? Well, he carked it last week.
Cellotape: scotch tape
- I used cellotape to stick the poster to the wall.
Chat up: flirt, try pick-up lines on someone
- He's always trying to chat up girls at the pub but never has any luck.
- Cheers for helping me move house yesterday.
Chemist: pharmacy / drugstore
- I have to go to the chemist to get something for my headache
Chilly bin: cooler
- Have you put the beer in the chilly bin?
Chips: like French fries but thicker. Sometimes called hot chips so as not to confuse with potato chips.
- Every Friday night we have fish and chips for dinner while we watch TV.
MORE COMING SOON!!!!!!
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