Yes, New Zealanders do speak English. But they speak their very own English, commonly referred to as Kiwi English. It’s been the subject of lectures, investigations, documentaries and never-ending mockery, and, as with any other aspect of language, it’s a reflection of their culture.
No matter how good an English speaker you are, if you are going to New Zealand for the first time, there will be words you have never heard before. They might appear combined with a bunch of other words that you already know – in which case you’ll easily deduce their meaning – or they might come to you surrounded by other examples of the finest Kiwi speech – in which case, you’re likely to need an “excuse me?”
The following is an overview of the expressions that are going to pop up everyday in Kiwi life.