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The Aussie slang most likely to confuse foreigners

From servo to togs, fair dinkum to chockers, language learning app Babbel has researched Australia’s favourite expressions and how they are interpreted internationally.


The survey was conducted with respondents from the UK, USA, France, Sweden, Germany, Spain, the Philippines, Canada, Poland and Russia and revealed the perceptions of our most commonly used slang amongst non-Australians.



While most respondents were able to correctly guess what pleasantries like “How you going?” and “G’day” really meant, they were not so on the mark with our more idiosyncratic expressions like “She’s a bloody ripper” or “Fair suck of the sauce bottle”, with nearly all respondents guessing wrong.


Check out some of Babbel’s favourites:


“She’ll be right” (It will be okay)

• UK: The wife is always correct

• Russia: She will be back in just a minute


“Chuck a u-ey” (To make a U-turn while driving)

• Germany: Something that is disgusting

• Poland: To drink fast

• Russia:Everything is cool


“Servo” (Service station)

• UK: Bring the drinks

• France/Sweden/Germany: Waiter


“Flat out like a lizard drinking” (Very busy)

• USA: Absolutely no idea...

• France: To have a flat tyre

• Germany: Spilling drinks everywhere


“Carry on like a pork chop” (To be overly dramatic)

• UK: A fat person trying to finish a task

• USA: To talk excessively


“You hum dinger” (A remarkable person or thing)

• Sweden: You fool Philippines:

• You’re boring Poland: You smell bad


“Fair suck of the sauce bottle” (Taking more than your fair share)

• UK: Probably something alcohol related

• USA: To be drunk


“Head like a dropped pie” (To be ugly)

• Germany: To be confused

• Sweden: Having a headache


“Kangaroos loose in the top paddock” (To be crazy)

• Canada: Someone who isn’t very smart

• Poland: To be very messy

• Russia: Mobbing the losers


“She’s a bloody ripper” (Someone or something that is cool or awesome)

• France: She just wants your money

• USA: A big storm


“Ken Oath” (Dead set)

• USA: One of the former Prime Ministers


“Goon bag” (Cheap wine)

• Sweden: A crazy person

• Poland: Not a very smart person


“Crack the shits” (To get angry or annoyed)

• USA: To get nervous

• Germany: To clear out quickly


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Published: 24 April 2018

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