Our goal at World Endeavors is to help you have an incredible, life-changing international experience. To do that, we do our best to prepare you with all the tools necessary to be successful in your internship placement. While Australia has no foreign language requirement, some interns may be confused upon arrival to learn that Australian English is like nothing they’ve ever heard. Below are a few key phrases to know before visiting the Land Down Under, which we hope will help get you by until you pick up some Aussie slang for yourself.


Barbie: (noun) meaning Barbecue. These gathering-style cook-offs are a favorite Australian pastime, and are best when practiced with family and friends.

Example: “Why don’t we go down and cook some prawns on the barbie this arvo?”


Arvo: (noun) meaning Afternoon. The time of day just after morning but before evening when the sun is high in the sky, likely when you will be finishing up your internship for the day.

Example: “Let’s spend the arvo at the beach!”


Mozzie (noun) meaning Mosquito. The incessantly annoying little buggers that will be sure to provide a nuisance to you during your time in Australia.

Example: “Oi mate, there sure are a lot of mozzies out today.”


Uni (noun) meaning University. A shortened version of the education institution, and most likely what many of your Australian peers are attending.

Example: “I have to do an internship to fulfill all of my Uni requirements.”


Bloody (adjective) meaning extremely, a lot, very, etc. This descriptive word adds intensity to any phrase.

Example: “Sydney is a bloody wonderful city, mate. You’re going to love it!”


Swimmers/Bathers/Cozzie (nouns) meaning Swimsuit. A light article of clothing that you will spend your weekends in enjoying Sydney’s beautiful coastlines.

Example: “Grab your swimmers/bathers/cozzie, we’re going on a bloody adventure!”


This list definitely doesn’t encompass nearly all the Aussie slang you will encounter during your time in Australia, so keep in mind a few tips for deciphering this new brand of English.


Does it sound like anything you recognize?


Many Australian-English words are simply traditional words but shortened, with an additional vowel sound at the end to make it more colloquial. Take Brekkie for example—you can decipher the first syllable and guess that it might mean Breakfast, the first meal of the day.


Can you use context clues?


This method is the second step when the word sounds nothing like any English word you are familiar with. Consider your situation, the topic of conversation, or any motions or gestures that the speaker may be displaying.


If those don’t work, ask!


You won’t be wandering Australia with a pocket dictionary. If you ever find yourself lost in translation, just ask! Aussies understand that their slang can be a bit confusing at times for foreigners, and while they may have a bit of fun when you can’t understand them, they will be happy to teach you the Aussie way.


Are you ready to start your journey to intern or study abroad in Australia? Start your application today!


australian english

Posted by World Endeavors on    July 16, 2016

Put yourself out there! TM

World Endeavors believes that international travel has the power to change lives, broaden horizons, and deepen intercultural understanding. The world is undergoing rapid changes, with societies becoming more interconnected and environmentally aware; at the same time a more challenging global economy inspires in many a need to reach out and make a positive difference while seeking personal growth opportunities. There has never been a better time than now to travel abroad.