Top 50 Slang For New Zealander – Meaning & Usage

New Zealand, with its stunning landscapes and vibrant culture, is known for its unique slang and colloquialisms. If you’ve ever wondered what those Kiwis are saying, you’re in luck! We’ve put together a list of the top slang words and phrases used by New Zealanders. Whether you’re planning a trip to the Land of the Long White Cloud or simply curious about the language of our friends down under, this article will have you speaking like a true Kiwi in no time!

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1. Kiwi

This term is used to refer to a person from New Zealand. It is derived from the kiwi bird, which is a national symbol of New Zealand.

  • For example, “I met a friendly Kiwi while traveling in Australia.”
  • A New Zealander might say, “As a Kiwi, I love rugby.”
  • When discussing cultural differences, someone might ask, “What do Kiwis typically eat for breakfast?”

2. Eh

This is a common filler word used by New Zealanders at the end of a sentence to seek agreement or confirmation. It is similar to the Canadian “eh”.

  • For instance, “It’s a beautiful day, eh?”
  • Someone might ask, “You’re coming to the party tonight, eh?”
  • A New Zealander might say, “The All Blacks are the best team in the world, eh?”

3. Yeah Nah

This phrase is used to express a hesitant or indecisive response. “Yeah” indicates agreement or acknowledgement, while “nah” indicates disagreement or a negative response.

  • For example, “Do you want to go out tonight?” “Yeah nah, I’m not really feeling it.”
  • Someone might ask, “Are you going to the concert?” and receive the response, “Yeah nah, I have other plans.”
  • A New Zealander might say, “Yeah nah, I don’t think that’s a good idea.”

4. Bugger all

This phrase is used to describe a small or insignificant amount of something. It can also be used to express frustration or disappointment.

  • For instance, “I worked all day and achieved bugger all.”
  • Someone might say, “There’s bugger all food in the fridge.”
  • A New Zealander might exclaim, “Bugger all, I forgot my keys!”

5. Bugger

This term is used as a mild exclamation or expression of surprise, frustration, or annoyance. It can also be used as a euphemism for a stronger swear word.

  • For example, “Bugger, I forgot my umbrella.”
  • Someone might exclaim, “Bugger, I missed the bus!”
  • A New Zealander might say, “Bugger off, mate!”

6. Chur

This is a versatile slang word that can be used to express gratitude, agreement, or excitement. It is similar to saying “thanks” or “cheers” in other English-speaking countries.

  • For example, if someone offers you a drink, you can respond with “Chur, mate!”
  • When someone does you a favor, you can say “Chur, bro!”
  • If something exciting happens, you might exclaim “Chur, that’s awesome!”

7. Bro

A term used to address a close friend or acquaintance, similar to “mate” or “buddy” in other countries. It is a casual and friendly way to refer to someone.

  • For instance, if you see your friend across the street, you can shout “Hey, bro!”
  • When introducing your friend to someone else, you can say “This is my bro, John.”
  • If your friend helps you out, you might say “Thanks, bro!”

8. Cuz

A term used to address a friend or acquaintance, similar to “bro” or “mate.” It is derived from the word “cousin” and is used to signify a close relationship or camaraderie.

  • For example, if you see your friend at a party, you can greet them with “Hey, cuz!”
  • When expressing agreement with someone, you can say “Yeah, cuz, I totally get it.”
  • If someone does something impressive, you might exclaim “Nice one, cuz!”

9. The wops

Refers to a remote or rural location in New Zealand. It is often used to describe places that are far away from urban centers or heavily populated areas.

  • For instance, if someone asks where you live and it’s in a small town, you can say “I live out in the wops.”
  • When planning a road trip, you might say “Let’s explore the wops this weekend.”
  • If someone mentions a place you’ve never heard of, you can ask “Is that in the wops?”

10. Ta

A casual and shortened version of “thank you.” It is commonly used in New Zealand as a way to express gratitude or appreciation.

  • For example, if someone holds the door for you, you can say “Ta!”
  • When receiving a gift, you can say “Ta, that’s really kind of you.”
  • If someone helps you out, you might say “Ta, I owe you one!”

11. Pakaru

This word is used to describe something that is broken or not functioning properly. It can also be used metaphorically to describe a person or situation that is in a state of disarray or not working well.

  • For example, “My phone screen is pakaru, I need to get it fixed.”
  • A person might say, “I’m feeling a bit pakaru after a long day at work.”
  • In a discussion about a malfunctioning machine, someone might comment, “Looks like the motor is pakaru, we’ll need to replace it.”

12. Stubbies

Stubbies refer to a type of short shorts that are commonly worn in New Zealand. The term can also be used to refer to any pair of shorts in general.

  • For instance, “I’m going to wear my stubbies to the beach today.”
  • A person might say, “I need to buy some new stubbies for the summer.”
  • In a conversation about clothing preferences, someone might comment, “I prefer wearing stubbies over longer shorts.”

13. Dairy

In New Zealand, the term “dairy” is commonly used to refer to a small convenience store or corner shop. These stores typically sell a range of everyday items, including groceries, snacks, and drinks.

  • For example, “I’m just going to the dairy to grab some milk.”
  • A person might ask, “Is there a dairy nearby where we can buy some snacks?”
  • In a discussion about neighborhood amenities, someone might mention, “We’re lucky to have a dairy right around the corner.”

14. Kia Ora

Kia ora is a Māori greeting commonly used in New Zealand. It can be used to say hello, welcome, or thank you. The phrase is a way to acknowledge and show respect for Māori culture and language.

  • For instance, “Kia ora, how are you?”
  • A person might say, “Kia ora, thank you for having me.”
  • In a conversation about cultural awareness, someone might comment, “It’s important to start a meeting with a kia ora to show respect.”

15. Arvo

Arvo is a shortened version of the word “afternoon” and is commonly used in New Zealand to refer to the afternoon hours.

  • For example, “See you this arvo!”
  • A person might say, “Let’s meet up for coffee tomorrow arvo.”
  • In a discussion about scheduling, someone might comment, “I have a meeting in the arvo, but I’m free in the morning.”

16. Heaps

In New Zealand slang, “heaps” is used to mean a large quantity or a lot of something.

  • For example, “I have heaps of homework to do tonight.”
  • A person might say, “Thanks heaps!” to express a lot of gratitude.
  • In a conversation about a party, someone might say, “There were heaps of people there!”

17. Togs

In New Zealand, “togs” is a slang term for swimwear or bathing suits.

  • For instance, “Don’t forget to bring your togs to the beach.”
  • A person might say, “I need to buy new togs for the summer.”
  • In a conversation about swimming, someone might ask, “Do you have your togs with you?”

18. Undies

In New Zealand slang, “undies” is a colloquial term for underwear.

  • For example, “I need to do laundry because I’m running out of clean undies.”
  • A person might say, “I prefer boxers over briefs for my undies.”
  • In a conversation about shopping, someone might ask, “Where can I find affordable undies?”

19. Jandals

In New Zealand, “jandals” is the term used for flip-flops or sandals.

  • For instance, “I’m going to wear my jandals to the beach.”
  • A person might say, “I love the feeling of walking in jandals.”
  • In a conversation about footwear, someone might ask, “Do you prefer jandals or sneakers?”

20. Gumboots

In New Zealand, “gumboots” is the slang term for rubber boots or Wellington boots.

  • For example, “I wore my gumboots to work because it’s raining.”
  • A person might say, “I need to buy new gumboots for gardening.”
  • In a conversation about outdoor activities, someone might ask, “Do you own a pair of gumboots?”

21. Bach

A bach is a small holiday home or beach house in New Zealand. It is typically a simple and basic accommodation used for vacations or weekend getaways.

  • For example, “We’re going to stay at our bach in the countryside for the long weekend.”
  • A person might say, “I love spending summers at the bach, enjoying the beach and relaxation.”
  • Someone might ask, “Do you have a bach where you can escape from the city?”

22. Op Shop

An op shop, short for opportunity shop, is a thrift store or second-hand shop in New Zealand. It sells used clothing, furniture, and other items at affordable prices.

  • For instance, “I found this vintage dress at the op shop for only $5.”
  • A person might say, “I like shopping at op shops because you can find unique items.”
  • Someone might ask, “Do you know of any good op shops in the area?”

23. Loo

Loo is a slang term used in New Zealand to refer to a bathroom or toilet. It is a casual and informal way of talking about the facilities.

  • For example, “Excuse me, where is the nearest loo?”
  • A person might say, “I need to use the loo before we leave.”
  • Someone might jokingly ask, “Who’s hogging the loo?”

24. Wop Wops

Wop wops is a slang term used in New Zealand to describe a remote or isolated area. It refers to a place that is far away from populated areas or city centers.

  • For instance, “They live in the wop wops, surrounded by nature and tranquility.”
  • A person might say, “I’m going camping in the wop wops this weekend.”
  • Someone might ask, “Have you ever been to the wop wops?”

25. Tramping

Tramping is a term used in New Zealand to describe hiking or trekking. It involves walking in nature, often on trails or in remote areas.

  • For example, “We went tramping in the mountains and enjoyed the stunning views.”
  • A person might say, “Tramping is a popular outdoor activity in New Zealand.”
  • Someone might ask, “Do you have any tips for tramping in the national park?”

26. O.E.

Refers to the experience of living or traveling abroad, especially for an extended period of time. It is common for young New Zealanders to take a gap year or work overseas before settling back in New Zealand.

  • For example, “I’m planning to do my O.E. in Europe next year.”
  • A friend might ask, “How was your O.E.? Did you have a great time?”
  • Someone might say, “I’m saving up for my O.E. to explore new cultures and gain new perspectives.”

27. Smoko

A short break from work, usually taken to have a snack or a cigarette. It is a common term used in New Zealand workplaces to refer to a scheduled break time.

  • For instance, “I’m going on smoko, I’ll be back in 15 minutes.”
  • A colleague might ask, “Do you want to join me for a smoko?”
  • Someone might say, “I need a smoko to recharge and clear my mind.”

28. Dole

Refers to the government welfare payment given to individuals who are unemployed and actively seeking work. It is a colloquial term used in New Zealand to describe the financial support provided by the government.

  • For example, “I lost my job, so I’m on the dole for now.”
  • A friend might ask, “Are you still on the dole or have you found a new job?”
  • Someone might say, “I’m grateful for the dole as it helps me cover my basic expenses while I search for a job.”

29. Cheers

A common expression of gratitude or appreciation in New Zealand. It is used to show thanks or acknowledge a kind gesture or favor.

  • For instance, “Cheers for lending me your car, mate!”
  • A friend might say, “Cheers for inviting me to your party, it was a great time!”
  • Someone might respond with, “No worries, mate! Cheers for helping me out last week.”

30. Choice

Used to describe something that is great, excellent, or good in quality. It is a slang term commonly used in New Zealand to express approval or satisfaction.

  • For example, “That movie was choice, I highly recommend it.”
  • A friend might say, “I just tried this new restaurant, and the food was choice!”
  • Someone might comment, “Your outfit looks choice, it suits you well.”

31. Bro & cuz

In New Zealand, “bro” and “cuz” are commonly used terms to refer to a close friend or family member. These terms are often used interchangeably and are used to express familiarity and camaraderie.

  • For example, a person might say, “Hey bro, what’s up?” or “Cuz, let’s grab a drink.”
  • In a conversation between friends, one might say, “Bro, you coming to the party tonight?”
  • Two cousins might greet each other by saying, “Cuz, long time no see!”

32. Jafa

This term is often used by people from other parts of New Zealand to refer to someone from Auckland. It is sometimes used in a playful or lighthearted manner, but can also carry a negative connotation, implying that Aucklanders are arrogant or self-centered.

  • For instance, a person might say, “Oh, you’re a Jafa? I guess that explains it.” or “Don’t mind him, he’s just a Jafa.”
  • In a discussion about regional stereotypes, someone might say, “As a Jafa, I’ve heard all the jokes.”
  • A person from Auckland might embrace the term and say, “Proud to be a Jafa!”

33. Chur bro

“Chur bro” is a popular phrase in New Zealand that is used to express gratitude or agreement. It is a shortened version of “cheers, bro” and is often used casually in everyday conversations.

  • For example, someone might say, “Chur bro, you saved my day!” or “Chur bro, I’ll catch up with you later.”
  • In a group setting, one person might say, “Let’s grab some beers after work.” and another might respond, “Chur bro, I’m in.”
  • A person might use the phrase to show appreciation, saying, “Chur bro, I owe you one.”

34. She’ll be right

This phrase is used to convey a sense of optimism or reassurance. It is often used to suggest that a situation will work out fine or that there is no need to worry.

  • For instance, someone might say, “Don’t stress, mate. She’ll be right.” or “Just give it some time, she’ll be right.”
  • In a conversation about a minor issue, one person might say, “I think we’ll be able to fix it easily. She’ll be right.”
  • A person might use the phrase to reassure someone, saying, “I know things seem tough right now, but trust me, she’ll be right.”

35. Sweet as

This phrase is used to express approval, satisfaction, or agreement. It is a positive affirmation that something is good or going well.

  • For example, someone might say, “That movie was sweet as!” or “We’re going on a road trip? Sweet as!”
  • In a conversation between friends, one person might say, “I got us tickets to the concert.” and the other might respond, “Sweet as, can’t wait!”
  • A person might use the phrase to show enthusiasm, saying, “I just found out I got the job. Sweet as!”

36. No worries

This phrase is used to indicate that there is no need to worry or be concerned about something.

  • For example, if someone apologizes for a mistake, you might respond, “No worries, it happens.”
  • If someone asks for a favor, you might say, “Sure, no worries, I can help you with that.”
  • When someone thanks you for something, you can reply, “No worries, happy to help.”

37. Chilly bin

This term refers to a portable container used to keep food and drinks cool, similar to a cooler or an icebox.

  • For instance, when going on a picnic, you might pack your food and drinks in a chilly bin to keep them cold.
  • If someone asks you to bring refreshments to a party, they might say, “Don’t forget to bring a chilly bin with some drinks.”
  • When going camping, you might store perishable items in a chilly bin to prevent them from spoiling.
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38. Chocka

This word is used to describe a place or situation that is full or crowded.

  • For example, if a concert venue is at full capacity, you might say, “It’s chocka in there, no more tickets available.”
  • When a restaurant is busy and there are no available tables, you could say, “Sorry, we’re chocka at the moment, there’s a waiting list.”
  • If someone asks how a party was, you might reply, “It was chocka, lots of people and great energy.”

39. Munted

This slang term is used to describe something that is damaged, broken, or in a state of disrepair.

  • For instance, if a car is involved in a serious accident, you might say, “The car is completely munted, it’s beyond repair.”
  • If a phone screen is cracked, you could say, “My phone is munted, I need to get it fixed.”
  • When describing a house that has been severely damaged by a natural disaster, you might say, “The house was munted by the earthquake, it’s uninhabitable.”

40. Stoked

This word is used to express extreme excitement or enthusiasm about something.

  • For example, if someone tells you they got accepted into their dream college, you might say, “That’s amazing, I’m so stoked for you!”
  • When someone announces they won a competition, you could say, “Wow, I’m stoked to hear that, congratulations!”
  • If someone invites you to go on an adventure, you might respond, “I’m stoked, that sounds like an incredible experience!”

41. Pissed

This word is commonly used in New Zealand to describe someone who is intoxicated or drunk. It can also be used to describe someone who is angry or upset.

  • For example, “He got really pissed at the party last night.”
  • A friend might say, “Let’s go out and get pissed tonight!”
  • Someone might comment, “I can’t believe she got so pissed over such a small thing.”

42. Puku

In New Zealand, “puku” is a Māori word that is used to refer to the stomach or belly. It is often used in a friendly or affectionate way.

  • For instance, a parent might say, “Come here and give me a hug, my little puku.”
  • A person might joke, “I’ve been eating too much, my puku is getting bigger.”
  • Someone might ask, “Do you have room in your puku for dessert?”

43. Tiki tour

In New Zealand, “tiki tour” is a phrase used to describe taking a scenic route or a leisurely drive to enjoy the scenery. It can also be used metaphorically to describe taking a roundabout or indirect path.

  • For example, “Instead of taking the highway, let’s go on a tiki tour and enjoy the countryside.”
  • A person might say, “Life is not always about taking the direct route, sometimes you need to go on a tiki tour.”
  • Someone might comment, “We ended up on a tiki tour and discovered a hidden gem of a beach.”

44. Haka

The haka is a traditional Māori dance that is performed by a group, often to demonstrate strength, unity, or to challenge opponents. It is often performed before sporting events or special occasions.

  • For instance, “The All Blacks perform a haka before their rugby matches.”
  • A person might say, “The haka is a powerful expression of Māori culture.”
  • Someone might comment, “The haka gave me chills, it was so intense.”

45. Esky

In New Zealand, an “esky” is a portable insulated container used to keep drinks and food cold. It is similar to a cooler or icebox.

  • For example, “Don’t forget to pack the esky for the beach picnic.”
  • A person might say, “I’ll grab some ice from the esky to chill the drinks.”
  • Someone might comment, “The esky kept the drinks cold all day.”

46. Suss

To suss something out means to investigate or figure out a situation or person. It can also mean to assess or evaluate something.

  • For example, “I need to suss out the new guy at work before I trust him.”
  • A person might say, “I sussed out the competition and came up with a strategy.”
  • Another might ask, “Can you suss out what’s wrong with my computer?”

47. Wop-wops

Wop-wops is a slang term used to refer to a remote or isolated area, typically in the countryside.

  • For instance, “I live in the wop-wops, miles away from civilization.”
  • A person might say, “We went camping in the wop-wops and didn’t see another person for days.”
  • Another might ask, “Do you know any good fishing spots in the wop-wops?”

48. Tiki

Tiki is a slang term used to mean “carry on” or “keep going.” It is often used to encourage someone to continue with their current actions or plans.

  • For example, “Just tiki along and don’t worry about what others think.”
  • A person might say, “I didn’t let the criticism stop me, I just kept on tiki-ing.”
  • Another might ask, “Are you going to tiki with your original plan or change course?”

49. Whanau

Whanau is a Maori word that means “extended family” or “kinship group.” It is often used to refer to close family members and can also include close friends.

  • For instance, “We had a big whanau gathering over the weekend.”
  • A person might say, “My whanau is always there for me, no matter what.”
  • Another might ask, “Are you spending Christmas with your whanau?”

50. Hangi

Hangi is a traditional Maori method of cooking food using heated rocks buried in a pit oven. It is also used to refer to the feast or meal that is prepared using this method.

  • For example, “We had a delicious hangi at the marae.”
  • A person might say, “I’m going to a hangi tonight, can’t wait for the food.”
  • Another might ask, “Have you ever tried cooking a hangi yourself?”