Kiwi to American

As an American-born globetrotter spending much of her early twenties in Aotearoa, New Zealand, my speaking and writing tends to be a mix of different types of English 🙂 I hope this is ultimately a strength rather than an awful confusion for my poor students, for they do get exposed to all different sorts of English and know that there is no one correct way to speak or write! Have more to add or anything you’re confused about? Please pop a note in the comments 🙂

arvo | afternoon
avo | avocado
bench | countertop “We use our Vitamix so often that we just leave it on the bench instead of keeping it in the cupboard.” (So what do you call the thing you sit on in the park? That’s a bench too. I thought it was confusing; no one else seems to.)
boot | trunk (of a car)
cardi | cardigan (a jumper/sweater with buttons down the front)
cheers | thanks “Cheers, mate!”
chips (or hot chips) | french fries
chopper | helicopter (can be a noun or a verb)
chur  | thanks Chur, bro!”
crisps | American chips (crunchy)
courgette | zucchini
capsicum | bell pepper
dairy | convenience store/corner store
do | an event/party “We have a work do this evening, but I’m so knackered I don’t know how long I’ll last.”
heaps | a lot, also very “We were heaps hungry, so we had heaps of chips with our veggie burgers.”
jandals | flip-flops
jumper | sweater or sweatshirt
kia ora* | hello, welcome
Kiwi: a kiwi bird (photo below), or person from Aotearoa, New Zealand! The fruit is not a kiwi; it is a kiwifruit. This is important. We don’t eat Kiwis.
kumara | sweet potato
(to be) keen | (to) want – e.g. “We’re off to make Black Lives Matter signs for the rally this weekend. Are you keen to come along?” “Yeah, I’m keen! Thanks for inviting me.” 
knackered | exhausted
lollies | candies – (Any sort! This does not mean specifically lollipops like in the US.)
loo | bathroom
mate
| friend – also, a friendly term to address someone you’ve just met e.g. “Cheers, mate” if someone has just held the door open for you or given you directions
pie | Unless specified otherwise, “pie” generally refers to savoury pie rather than sweet pie, which is not really a thing. “Hey bro, have you had the new Mexican Z Pie? It’s sweet as and it is vegan too! I had one for afternoon tea.”
pre-load | pre-game Shall we pre-load with boxed wine before we go out? The bar we’re going to is quite posh so everything will be so expensive.
sweet as | really great, or everything’s okay — can also replace the “sweet” with most any other adjective – e.g. “easy as” means super easy
tea | morning tea and afternoon tea refers to the snack we eat in between breakfast and lunch and between lunch and dinner, respectively. School kids and most work places will stop for a morning tea snack and chat. It can include tea that one drinks, but doesn’t necessarily.
togs
 | bathing suit
tramping | hiking/backpacking
uni | university/college “She’s in her third year of uni.” also college campus, e.g. “I’m going to uni to do some studying today.”
whanau* | family/community

*actually a Māori word, adopted into most English speakers’ vocabulary – See 100 Māori words every New Zealander should know

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