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A Guide to Australian Etiquette

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As an “Entertainment Manager” at an Aussie hostel, I am constantly being asked in what way is it best to behave in Australia? What constitutes good manners? And how to have good social interaction with Australian citizens.

After long hours of research I received some information (a forwarded email!) that I think may help a lot of backpackers and tourists to understand their knowledge of Australians, and you too can learn the correct way to behave around Australians or in common situations you might find yourself in.

A Guide to Australia Etiquette

unknown author

General Etiquette Guidelines
  • Never take an open stubby to a job interview.
  • Always identify people in your paddocks before shooting at them.
  • It’s tacky to take an Esky to church.
  • If you have to vacuum the bed, it’s time to change the sheets.
  • Even if you’re certain you’re included in the will, it’s rude to take your ute and trailer to the funeral.
Eating Out – Australian Restaurant Etiquette
  • When decanting wine from the box, tilt the paper cup and pour slowly so as not to bruise the wine.
  • If drinking directly from the bottle, hold it with only one hand.
Etiquette at home – entertaining guests
  • A centrepiece for the table should never be anything prepared by a taxidermist.
  • Don’t allow the dog to eat at the table, no matter how good his manners.
Australian personal Hygiene Etiquette
  • While ears need to be cleaned regularly, this should be done in private, using one’s OWN ute keys.
  • Even if you live alone, deodorant isn’t a waste of money.
  • Extensive use of deodorant can only delay bathing by a few days.
  • Dirt and grease under the fingernails is a no-no, it alters the taste of finger foods and if you are a woman it can draw attention away from your jewellery.
Dating Etiquette
  • Always offer to bait your date’s hook – especially on the first date.
  • Be assertive. Let her know you’re interested: “I’ve been wanting to go out with you ever since I read that stuff about you on the dunny door two years ago.”
  • Establish with her parents what time she’s expected back. Some will say 11:00 PM, others might say “Monday.” If the latter is the answer, it’s the man’s responsibility to get her to school on time.
Theatre / Cinema Etiquette
  • Crying babies should be taken to the lobby and picked up after the movie ends.
  • Refrain from yelling abuse at characters on the screen. Tests have proven they can’t hear you.
Wedding Etiquette
  • Livestock is a poor choice for a wedding gift.
  • Kissing the bride for more than five seconds may cause a drop in your popularity. (Excessive use of the tongue is also considered out of place)
  • For the groom, at least, rent a tux. A tracksuit with a cummerbund and a clean football jumper can create a tacky appearance.
  • Though uncomfortable, say “yes” to socks and shoes for the occasion.
Driving Etiquette
  • Dim your headlights for approaching vehicles, even if your gun’s loaded and the roo’s in your rifle sight.
  • When entering a roundabout, the vehicle with the largest roo bar doesn’t always have the right of way.
  • Never tow another car using panty hose and gaffer tape.
  • When sending your wife down the road with a petrol can, it’s impolite to ask her to bring back beer too.

I hope this helps you all and you are able to take some pointers on the best way to behave.

4 thoughts on “A Guide to Australian Etiquette

  1. Shooting at roos? NEVER! Socks and shoes is sometimes recommended, as many of us go barefoot — sometimes even at the work place! Bloody oath! Those with roo bars could be bogans, but that is no problem to me, as many consider me to be one myself (…or indeed an ocker)! Actually I am more of a sook, I whinge too much, but rarely go so far as to spit the dummies!

  2. General Etiquette 2
    Remember to feed the dog and identify which neighbour your shooting before firing (generally the one from next door or up the road).

    Never forget stubbies to a barbie.

    Say hi to the blue tongue and kill the red belly.

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