For such a little country, New Zealand has a big personality. This is because this country has a name for having the unique taste, color, taste, and touch.
1. Have the basic knowledge
Here we don’t mean some historical facts, the names of outstanding people or the recipes for traditional dishes. We would like to help you with simple things that will make you understand the locals and make friends with them.
- Choice aye – all good
- As – use to intensify the preceding adjective eg ‘sweet as’, ‘hungry as’
- Bro – short for brother, the term of friendship used with alarming regularity
- Chur – Kiwi for thanks, cool, sweet as, etc. A more relaxed version of ‘cheers bro’. It is a New Zealand version of ‘ta da!’
- Yeah nah – technically means no. Defined by the user; purposely vague.
- Yeah right – means ‘I don’t believe you at all’.
- Not even – people use it when the facts of a conversation are in dispute.
- Oh true – used to express vehement agreement
- Stink – an expression of dismay when told of a failure or an unfortunate event
- Tiki Tour – from ‘Contiki Tour‘. Means ‘the long way round’ eg ‘we’ll tiki tour around to Napier for the next game’.
- Munted – used to describe Christchurch after the earthquakes, but used to describe something that’s stuffed
- Dorkland – what South Islanders call Auckland
- Pig Island – what North Islanders call the South Island
- Bach (pronounced batch; mainly North Island) – a small holiday home, shortened from bachelor
- Crib (some South Island) – another word for bach
2. Eat and drink properly
Now, let’s make sure you will feel satisfied with your diet while you are in New Zealand.
- Dairy – what other countries call a corner store/convenience store/milk bar
- Hokey pokey – vanilla ice-cream with toffee bits. More popular in New Zealand than
- Whittaker’s – New Zealand for chocolate. A locally grown brand, famous for its Peanut Slab.
- Jaffas – Sweets with a chocolate center and a crunchy red coating commonly rolled down the aisles during a film.
- Piss (pronounced puss) – beer
- Sink piss – drink beer
- Get pissed – get drunk.
- L&P – Lemon & Paeroa, a popular soft drink.
- Marmite – a yeast-extract spread that New Zealanders will argue is better than Vegemite (Australian equivalent) and the UK version of Marmite. Other countries will
think they’re all crazy.
- Pineapple lumps – chocolate-coated lumps of pineapple-flavored confection
- Suck the kumara–endure hard times, lose–origins being in death and thus below ground. A kumara is a sweet potato.
3. Be aware: False friends
And before you head off on your merry way, if there’s one thing to remember about the New Zealand language, it’s irony. Whatever a New Zealander is saying, they probably mean the opposite. Look for the tongue planted firmly in their cheek – and hope they don’t call you a ‘winner’.
4. Be ready to spend plenty of time on the road.
Unlike many other countries around the world, New Zealand doesn’t really have a national rail network. Trains connect major cities, but they operate at a scenic pace–no high-speed options here! Traveling around on the road is the most common way.
Traveling to New Zealand by car can be tricky thanks to the narrow, winding roads and constantly changing speed limits. Traveling by bus is the way to go will work for you if you want to sit back and take in the scenery,
InterCity is New Zealand’s largest passenger transport network, with more routes and more daily departures than any other.
Their TravelPass range of bus passes has pre-planned itineraries you can follow in your own time, letting you travel independently but with help to plan your time in New Zealand.
And because the bus is the way Kiwis travel around NZ, you’re sure to pick up some handy tips from locals while you travel! But before that, you’d better learn some Kiwi slang first!
5. Be open for a dialogue
New Zealanders are very proud of their country and love to ask visitors what they think of it. From the moment you arrive, get ready to give answers to various questions on your impressions so far. New Zealanders can’t help doing it–they want to make sure you’re having as good a time visiting as they are living here.
The plus side is, you can use these encounters to harvest all kinds of local secrets, as Kiwis will always want to share the best of their country. Ask a New Zealander where the best beaches are, their favorite campground or to name a few best local watering holes and they’ll happily oblige.
6. Value the art of communication
New Zealanders are well-known for their affable natures, and acceptance of outsiders. Keeping this in mind though, you better realize that Kiwis are also quite a private bunch. They’re the kings and queens of passing the time of day with strangers, and travelers feel delighted at how you can get chatting about the weather, good places to watch the game or the history of an area, with a total unknown for ages. However, asking personal questions like how much someone paid for their house or car, or if they have a family or not, or have kids, is a social faux-pas.
7. Be barefoot…well, sometimes
This is a very endearing feature of New Zealand. Many people find it odd the first time they see it. It also cements New Zealanders’ reputation as a country full of hobbits. It’s that Kiwis don’t much like footwear, and in the summer months, you’ll see heaps of people wandering about barefoot, even in cities like Wellington.
8. Have the can-do attitude
Perhaps the most famous Kiwi trait of all is their predominantly optimistic nature in the face of adversity. No matter what challenges they experience, they seem to be always absolutely ready for them. It is a nice habit, isn’t it?