by Debbie Alford
Americans take note. You may think you are familiar with our way of life thanks to Paul Hogan (Crocodile Dundee) and Steve Irwin (The Crocodile Hunter), or familiar with our diet courtesy of the Outback Steakhouse (Bloomin’ Onion anyone?) but we offer much more to American holiday makers. Australia is a country with a great many varied travel destinations from the outback to the beaches through to the multicultural cities offering a wide variety of entertainment and dishes to eat ranging from spicy Thai to tasty Lebanese.
However there are some things to know before you visit, especially to do with our language. We don’t all speak like Crocodile Dundee and some of our phrases tend to be a little unusual. Here are some which may be helpful to you during your visit:
A shout – Your turn to buy usually referring to drinks as in “your shout” or “my shout”
Cuppa – A cup of tea or coffee
Chook – Chicken
Maccas – McDonalds
Footy – Australian Rules Football
Barrack – To support as in a particular team
Snag – A sausage
Tomato Sauce (or sauce) – ketchup
We love our meat pies at sporting events and vegemite on toast is a breakfast favourite. We rarely say “Gidday” opting for the more universally accepted welcome of “Hello”. And we NEVER EVER use the term fanny pack preferring bum bag or belt bag instead. In Australia the word ‘fanny’ refers to a part of the female anatomy. Use of the word and the anatomy can both lead to trouble!
Our currency is dollar and cent-based although you may notice the absence of the one cent coin and the quarter. Our lowest coin is 5 cents and we have a 20 cent coin as opposed to a quarter.
One important fact to remember is that Australians drive on the left side of the road. To counteract this make sure you look both left and right before crossing a street. Speeds and distances are measured in kilometres not miles and this can add to confusion.
Stay safe but most of all have fun!
Looking forward to meeting you!
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