Top 33 NZ Slang Words That Don’t Make Sense


Every country has its own slang, and New Zealand’s slang is so, er, original? that it’s just downright confusing.

If you can get past our Kiwi accent and know what we’re really saying when we ask for a pen, six, or when we call someone Ben, you’re halfway there. Then there are words like “chur”, “stoked”, and “chook.” Are you lost yet?

We know it’s hard being the new kid on the block, so we have created a list of our Top Slang Words New Zealanders Use to help you out.

And now for our full list of the top 33 Kiwi slang words


  1. Yeah, nah. I reckon youse got your list about half right? Some of those definitions are just munted, eh! But she’ll be right, s’all good. Sweet as.

  2. I mean, at least half are right…

    The one that you got wrong that annoys me the most though, is “Yeah, nah”.
    “Yeah, nah” only means no. Just like the much less common “Nah, yeah” means yes. It’s kinda a way of saying that you had to think about it before deciding on the final outcome, or alternatively if you were being sarcastic with the first word.

    • Depends on how you say it. If you say “yeah, nah, blah blah blah” it means you’re giving your statement some thought. But if you say “yeah, NAH” and nothing else, then it means no, sarcastically,

      • Ah, yes. Good point. I myself only use it for the later, sarcastic meaning and didn’t consider it’s use this way. Thanks for the correction.

  3. What owl? The moorpork! Or do you mean Ae?
    Yeah, Nah means only No! like “yeah thats stupid, I aint doing that’ Yeah, Nah”
    Up the boohai, or boowai Never heard of that..
    Takka – Tucka
    Maori Job: = half arsed but works well
    Hungus – who the hell says that
    Gruts or undies- Gruds!
    Beached as: no one uses it for that,, if anything just means stuck or lazy..

    • Up the boowai is an older term, more rural than urban in use. I’ve only heard Kiwis of a certain vintage use it.
      Also, I was s teen in the 90s and hungus was a common slang term at my school. Again, it’s probably more common for a certain age group.

  4. Solid is not a kiwi slang. It’s used on the regular show which is based in America… where did the writer get their info from?

  5. kinda right…takka?! think this person means tucker. what owl? is that what, ow? Solid is not Kiwi. And ‘rangi’ MUST be mispronounced to mean ‘farked’ (so said like ‘rang-ee’)…as in …her house is rangi as. And if you don’t want an uncomfortable moment, best you be Māori if you want to use it.

  6. I have never and never will pronounce chilly bin as chilly bun. Those that do it is simply because they refuse to open their mouths wide to speak.

  7. Crib. Also a bach or holiday home if you live further south than Dunedin. She’ll be right…the same as Ozzies’ Good as Gold. Means all good.

  8. Takka? try Tucker English (1784) for food. Tuck-box (19thC Eng) a container to store personal food in English public boarding schools, [Billy Bunter stories 1890-1960]] Tuck-shop place on school grounds to buy food. Tucker-bag (19thC Aust) fabric, drawstring bag to hold food. Perhaps a back formation from “tuckered out” meaning tired, weak and unfed. having tuck=having food

  9. Chur from “cheers” (14thC) wishing one happiness, to be of good cheer.
    Scodey perhaps shoddy (19thC US) filthy, inferior, poorly made.
    Squizz or looksee, Possibly after Squizzy Taylor,(early20thC Aust) a short Australian criminal.;a “little crook”, rhyming slang for “a look”

  10. Chur lol – “I got/get it” or understand and agree….

    Tiki tour – hitting the road with no destination inmind just out on a mission :)..

    Yeah Nah – yeah i get it but Nah ill pass :}…

    Maori Job – lol maori slang fior useless ” lets see how many maori bite hahaha – pukana 0_o –

    Swannie – worn by all like gumboots if u live in da bush or work/live on a farm or feel COLD ^_^…

    Hungus – someone who sees something u have and wants it!! :p…..

    Lol tis so much more missing on dis list but its all honky dory <_< AKA OKI DOKI lmao….


  11. You missed “reef” as in gross/not nice. Also, “blazed” (stoned) or “baked” (really stoned)? And it’s “what ow” not what owl?

  12. Since wen did we pronounce “Chilly Bin” as Chilly BUN an 2 say its internationally called an Esky is full of shit its an Esky in aus not da world like ugh an Esky is a brand not wat its actually called omg only an aussie came up with this list CLOWNS

  13. A swanee is a checkered jersy? A swanee is short for a “swan dry” jacket, nothing to do with a jersey.

  14. Knackered is pommy. When I moved to England I’d say “I’m stuffed”, and they’d look at me quizzically and ask “Did you eat too much?” I had to learn to say “Knackered” in Pommyland, so that they’d understand me. We always said “stuffed” to mean tired, exhausted.

    • Knackered comes from a time when you had your horses nuts removed ,called knackering. now as any male would feel that he is “had it” or ‘stuffed” after being knackered…hence knackered…all done in

  15. Box of fluffy ducks = everything is really good. Shitkicker = street no hoper. Banging like a shithouse door in a thunderstorm = promiscuous activity. Mainlander = if you are from the North Island you reckon it’s the mainland if you are from the South Island you reckon you are a mainlander and North Islanders are pig islanders.

  16. CRACK UP!!!!
    What EH: not owl/el…Maori say EH!!
    Tiki Tour: you have no destination youre going for a roam!!
    SOLID: Hawaiians/usa been using it for yonks/
    HUNGUS/HĀMU: Being greedy or being a Scab!!
    CHUR: Sup, Sesh, Mean, Sweet..
    Chur chur

  17. It’s what ow.. not what owl..
    Chur means soo much more..
    Wops.. not wop wops..
    Hungus also means someone’s not sharing.. as in.. hurry up ow..don’t be a hungus..
    There’s soooo much more tho..
    Anyways.. chur chur bo..

  18. Ha!! I like JAFA the best. Reminds me of a term that people from the State of Wisconsin (USA) use in regards to people from the State of Illinois, particularly from the Chicago area. The term is “FIBs” and it stands for “F—— Illinois Bastards.” Of course, people from Illinois refer to those from Wisconsin as “cheeseheads!” LOL! So, I guess that some of it is payback!

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