How do people greet each other in New Zealand?

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How do people greet each other in New Zealand?

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When I first visited New Zealand as a tourist in the mid-1990s, I was struck by how friendly Kiwis were. They kept on asking me how I was. How did they have so much time on their hands that they wanted to know how I was??

It was not until my boyfriend (at the time, now my husband) told me that being greeted with 'How are you?' is not a licence to tell people about my life story. It is just a form of greeting. You normally answer with 'good' or 'I'm well, thanks'. It is also customary to ask them how they are as well.

This is especially true when you go to shops or the supermarket. I remember my first encounter with the Kiwi way of greeting. My boyfriend and I were at the supermarket, the check out chick asked how I was and I replied by raising my eyebrows and smiling. Said boyfriend nudged me, asking if I replied back. I said 'yeah'! I raised my eyebrows to acknowledge her. That's how we did it back home in the Philippines. Well, now I know my way of greeting wasn't appropriate ;)

People in New Zealand also often talk about the weather as a form of small talk. In the Philippines, people greet you with comments about the way you look or your weight! So, if you're visiting New Zealand, here are some small talk tips that you can try when talking about the weather:

"It's cold out there." You can reply with 'yeah, it is a bit nippy.' or 'It's frosty out there'.

When it's foggy, you can say 'ooohh, it's quite claggy'

When the weather is quite warm, you would hear comments like 'It's blo*dy hot out there'. They're not swearing at you so don't be offended! ;) People would also say 'it's muggy' or 'boiling hot' or 'stuffy'.

When it's raining, you'd hear comments like:

"It's bucketing down" or "It's hosing down" or "It's pissing down"

What about you? What common Kiwi expressions have you heard?