Australia is somewhat of an enigma to the rest of the world. Are there really Hemsworth brother look-alikes roaming around every corner? Do drop bears actually exist? Are you supposed to greet every single person you see? Or is that now creepy? Honestly, anyone who’s not an Australian or hasn’t lived Down Under for a decent amount of time would be truly confused by many Aussie customs on a first (or second, or even, third) visit.
But, thanks to a recent Reddit thread where a user asked the r/Australia community “What are the unwritten rules to living in Australia?” Aussies have provided some outstanding comments or ‘rules’ that are sure to help any tourist when they holiday in Oz; and will give fellow Aussies a good chuckle.
“Saying ‘she’ll be right, mate’ after a life threatening situation.”Reddit user bigPHATduck
One Reddit user wrote, “If someone lets you through in traffic you must thank them with ‘the wave’.” This simply means that when driving, if a car lets you merge into their lane, wave to the driver to say ‘thank you’. Australians will get mighty mad and think you’re rude if you don’t do the obligatory wave.
“You must clack the tongs at least twice before use,” another Reddit user commented. Of course, this is referring to the fact that if you’re barbecuing or cooking and you’re using tongs, you must snap the tongs together a few times before you use them. If you don’t, an Australian will spot you as a tourist immediately.
The comment: “Give anything that’s been sitting around a while a good kick before picking up in case of spiders” from Reddit user TreDeadly, is actually an extremely good tip. Australia is infamous for its spider population and, as any Aussie will know, spiders will happily climb into anything and everything if it’s been sitting a while – yes, even if the item in question has been sitting inside (spiders are crafty buggers who easily end up indoors).
As a lot of Australia’s spiders are poisonous, it’s actually essential you shake a pair of boots (or bag or whatever) that have been unused for a while; otherwise, you may put your foot into the boot and get a deadly bite from an eight-legged creature.
Many Reddit users also cleared up the confusing meaning behind popular Aussie slang, with one user clarifying, “Nah yeah = yes. Yeah nah = no” and another explaining that “When asked to bring a plate, do not just bring a plate… [the phrase means ‘bring a] plate of food to share’.”
Another shared an insight into a phrase that suggests you are not in an Australian’s good books. “Saying the phrase ‘yeh right,’ followed by any of these non-threatening titles Mate, chief, champ, big fella, turbo, tiger, buddy is an insult of huge proportions,” Reddit user n_original wrote.
Speaking of food, if you order hot chips (fries to our American readers) anywhere in Australia, as one Reddit user pointed out, “the answer to ‘chicken salt?’ is always yes.” This simply means that if you’re asked whether you want chicken salt – a tasty Australian delicacy that is essentially chicken flavoured salt – on your chips, you must say yes.
Australians have a (well-earned) reputation as beer drinkers so obviously, the Reddit thread also featured lots of rules concerning beer. User AggravatingChest7838 simply advised, “Don’t drink fosters,” which is seriously accurate. Aussies do NOT drink Fosters and we have no idea why everyone – particularly Americans – think that we do.
And finally, one Reddit user wrote: “After a sip of beer, it is customary to enthusiastically ‘ahh’ to inform present company of your enjoyment of the beverage.” Truer words about Australia haven’t been written.