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How to speak Australian


G’day mates! How ya goin’?

So you’ve decided to study in Australia, and the only thing you’re more worried about than poisonous animals is understanding the locals. Crickey!

When you first learnt English, you were taught how to speak and write ‘proper’ English. Then you came to Australia and began hearing some very strange terms. Australian slang is certainly ‘interesting’!

Wanna learn how to speak like a true blue Aussie? You’ll be stoked to know we’ve got some ripper tips for ya to give a burl this arvo. Fair dinkum!*

*Translated – Would you like to learn how to speak Australian slang in a genuinely Australian manner? Then you’ll be pleased to know that we have some excellent tips for you to try this afternoon. We’re telling the truth.


Aussie Words

You’ll notice that many Australian words are abbreviated. A general rule of thumb is that any word in the English language can be shortened or changed from its original version. When in doubt, abbreviate everything, then add an ‘ie’ or an ‘O’ sound.


Aussie word Translation
Aussie Australian
Barbie Barbecue
Bail To cancel plans
Bikkie Biscuit/cracker/cookie
Bloke Man/guy
Brekky Breakfast
Brissie Brisbane
Choc A Bloc Full   
Crikey An expression of surprise   
Crook Being ill   
Deadset True  
Doco Documentary  
Facey Facebook  
Flannie / Flanno Flannelette shirt  
Flat out Really busy   
Footy Football  
G’day Hello  
Hooro Goodbye  
Lappy Laptop  
McDonald’s Macca’s  
Mozzie Mosquito  
On Ya Good work  
Ripper Great  
Sanger Sandwich  
Sheila Woman*  
Snag Sausage  
Straya Australia  
Sunnies Sunglasses  
Thongs Flip Flops  
True Blue Genuinely Australian  
Tucker Food  
Uni University  


*This term is antiquated and borderline offensive, so perhaps avoid this one.


Another phenomenon you may notice is that Australians don’t always call each other by their real names. You can add an ‘O’, a ‘Y’, or ‘Za’. Here are some examples below.


Name Aussie version with an ‘O’
David Davo
Timothy Timbo
John Johnno
Simon Simmo
James 1st Jim, then Jimbo


Last Name Aussie version with a ‘Y’
Smith Smithy
Jones Jonesy
Frith Frithy
Pierce Piercey
Gill Gilly


Name Aussie version with ‘Zza’
Gary Gazza
Barry Bazza
Jeremy Jezza
Teressa Tezza
Lauren Lozza


*Special inclusion for people named Daniel – Dan, Danno, Danny Boy, Staniel, Dan the man, Daniel-San, Danielle.

**If your last name is MacSomething ie MacDonald, MacCloud, MacKinley, everyone will call you Macca.
Our true blue RAs cooking some sangers on the barbie for tucker because the Uni blokes and sheilas are flat out.

We hope you enjoyed this blog on How to Speak Australian. It’s really all a bit of fun, so try it out on the staff or the RAs next time you see them. Hooroo!
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