Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Interesting Australian Differences

I have been in Australia for almost two weeks now. It seems like I've been here forever! I've learned so much already and am constantly finding out something new and interesting about Australian culture. I've been keeping track of all the differences I find. Some are simply a different word or phrase and some are a completely different lifestyle. Here is my list of Australian oddities and interesting differences.

- I do not go to 'College', I go to 'Uni' (short for 'University')

- "How are you going?"/"How'd ya go?" is the same as "How are you doing?"/"How'd ya do?"

- Internet is payed by usage, not by month. When we run out, we have to buy more.

- Eggs are not kept refrigerated, they are just kept down the normal isles at the grocery store.

- Phone numbers are really weird! The area codes are 4 digits, and the number is 6 digits, instead of 3 and 7 in the US. But, unlike in the US where numbers are represented in the 123-4567 form, numbers here can be represented any way you want. Ex: 123456, 12-3456, 12-34-56, 123-456.

- Distances are obviously measured in meters instead of feet or yards. It just takes me a second to think "How far is 50 meters down the road?" when I get directions from someone.

- Students have to pay each time they go to the rec center. You would think we could work out for free if we pay $9000 of tuition!

- There seems to be a stereotype that Americans are stupid. Thanks a lot MTV.

- Speaking of MTV, the cashier at the grocery store told me I "sound like MTV"... thanks?

- I never realized how Americanized the world was! The exact same music is played here. All hip hop/pop/rock music that is popular by US bands and artists is played everywhere here.

- Relating to that, there are Australian versions of lots of American shows. Example: Biggest Loser Australia, So you think you can dance, Australia?

- There are no hot dog buns here. They just use pieces of bread. I actually had someone ask me, "So do you really have special bread for your hot dogs?"

- Cars drive on the left side of the road, which makes scary to cross roads because you need to take a second to think, "Ok now which way will the car come from?" People also walk on the left side down hallways and sidewalks.

- The Australian money is different. First of all there are no pennies. Prices are still listed as $2.99, but you are just charged $3.00. The coins are 5 cents, 10 cents, 20 cents, 50 cents, 1 dollar, and 2 dollars. The cash is $5, $10, $20, $50, $100. Which means anything less than $5 is in coins. I hate carrying change around! Last but certainly not least, the cash is un-rippable! I tried to tear a 50 dollar bill... impossible. Their money is made with some sort of plastic that makes it basically waterproof and tear-proof.

- French fries are called "chips"

- Rent is payed by the week

- Subway advertises their $7 footlongs

- Guys wear short shorts

- No sales tax

That is all I have right now. I'll post more if I come up with another list.


  1. you think you could maybe post a pic of you in some short shorts!?

  2. Man I miss listening to you talk and your sense of humor..."I sound like mtv, thanks???" tehe.

    I have friends from Australia and I loved learning their slang and different phrases, "How ya going?" So cool!

    You better eat some vegamite soon, freakin staple!!

    Miss you bud :)

  3. I'll pass on the short shorts pic - being your Aunt and all. Loved to hear your observances of all the differences and glad you're seeing it as a huge adventure. Help to set straight the image of Americans, if anyone should represent us -it's you! love, Aunt Barb & Uncle Bob