On Living in Australia and Picking up Many Australia-isms

March 27, 2014
Living in Australia

foreign-correspondent badge final While Living in Australia I stopped to pick up some money in the most non-committal way I knew how to—by working in a bar. During this experience I learned more random Australian words, slang and sayings than I ever had before.

Below are some of the fun and random words I think many Americans may want to know prior to hopping over here for a trip (though this is certainly not everything):

Entrée: This actually refers to the first course (our appetizer/starter), which is then usually followed by the “main.”

Serviettes: Napkins!

Schooner: A specific size of beer, which is normally in between the pint and the pot (half pint).

Food counter: Many restaurants actually require you to go to the food counter to order and pay for your food, either giving you a buzzer to pick it up when the food is ready or a number for it to be delivered to your table.

Tomato sauce: The Australia version of Ketchup, which is not quite as sweet as the American kind.

“May I please have the bill?”: In Australia, a customer must ask for the bill because Australians think it is rude for waiters to just bring it to the table.

Booking: Instead of making a reservation for a restaurant, they say booking.

Sweet as: Awesome, cool, good.

No dramas: No worries, not a problem.

Jug: Pitcher of beer, Coke, ice, etc.

Coffee: Ordering a coffee in Australia isn’t as simple as that; you need to specify the type of coffee ranging from latte, cappuccino, macchiato, or long black, which is the typical Americano.

Arvo: This is the abbreviated way of saying afternoon.

Hanging: Usually refers to a hangover.

Togs: Swimsuit, though I’ve been told it is only used in Queensland.

Take away: Food to go or take out.

Brekkie: Breakfast

Bickies: This is short for biscuits, which can mean cookies or crackers depending on the usage.

Bush: The woods.

Bogan: Similar to Redneck.

Mate’s rate: A deal, discount or friend’s deal.

Skull: Similar to our “chug.” This is used when wanting a person to finish his drink.

Bake: Going for a sunbathe.

Ute: Type of truck but more commonly used to refer to the vehicle that is half car and half truck.

I want to give a huge thanks to all of my favorite customers, co-workers and local friends for laughing at me every time I asked what a word meant or said something funny to you!

About Jessica Burkhead

Jessica Burkhead quit her job to travel the world.

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