I’m writing this post mainly for my friend Amanda who will be visiting in a few weeks (yay) but I figured some others might get some benefit from it as well. I’ve compiled a list of tips and helpful things to know for your first visit to Australia.
1. “Hotels” are not usually real hotels. They are bars or pubs. So when you see “Mosman Hotel, The Clock Hotel, Cremorne hotel”, etc… they aren’t places to sleep, they are places to drink.
2. Lemonade is not lemonade. Lemonade here is Sprite or 7 Up. You can’t really find what we think of as lemonade in many places , but if you do ever find it- it will be called “traditional or real lemonade.”
3. When you order a drink at a bar, it comes with one shot. NEVER any more than exactly one shot of alcohol. If you want more, you order a double- and pay double!
4. Entrees ARE actually Entrees. And by this I mean they come before your main course, as they should. Entrees in the US are the main course, but in the rest of the world, entree means appetizer or starter. So don’t order an entree and expect it to be big enough to fill you up!
5. Don’t tip. It is not the common practice here and many people actually get mad if you tip because they don’t want tipping to become the norm. If enough people start tipping, it WILL become the norm and then it will be expected. For now, you only tip if you really want to because of great service (which as my last post noted, is rare).
6. “Ta” means thank you. Because yes, some people are so lazy that even saying “thanks” uses too much energy 🙂
7. A “dunny” is a toilet. And on that note, when you need to find a bathroom, ask for the toilet, not the bathroom. It sounds tacky, but that’s just what people say here.
8. “Pash” means make-out. While this doesn’t seem like a helpful hint for visitors, it has been something that I’ve needed to explain to the last few Americans who visited.
9. If you’re by yourself, get into the front seat of the cab. I still don’t do this- but Andrew said it seems kind of rude to get in the back if you are all alone.
10. Ask for your bill at the end of the meal, otherwise you may never get it!
11. “Light beer” is not light on calories, it’s light on alcohol. If you order light beer to watch your figure, it won’t help. You’ll just be heavier and less boozy.
12. TONS of restaurants are B.Y.O. so you can bring your own bottles of wine… which is a HUGE reason that we end up drinking so much.
13. Nobody says “McDonalds.” It’s Maccas.
14. Chicken Salad sandwiches are not the typical chicken salad you would get in the US (with mayo and celery and stuff). When you order a chicken salad sandwich or turkey salad sandwich it means chicken WITH salad. And by “salad” I mean lettuce, tomato and other typical fixings that come on a burger/sandwich.
15. People will say “How you going?” and you will be totally confused. Your mind will try to comprehend if they are saying “how are you DOING?” or “Where are you GOING?” So… just say “good.”
16. Don’t try to say “G’day.” Americans always sound ridiculous when they attempt to say it.
17. Coffee is different, but I don’t drink it, so I can’t really give tips here. Maybe someone else can chime in on this one. 🙂
Anyone else have any handy tips or hints they’d like to share??