Australians are known worldwide for their laid-back energy, love of adventure, and sun-kissed skin. Whether you’ve come to this glorious country looking for love or just someone to hang out with at the beach, you’re sure to find someone – after all, who can resist our adorable accent? Here are a few tips for hooking up and having fun Down Under:
What’s in Store?
If you’re thinking about coming to Australia to meet people or just to hang out, know that we’re not all just beach babes and surfer dudes. Aussies love live music, good coffee and especially sport – whether it’s football (Aussie rules, of course), cricket, tennis or netball. So pack your sneakers and get ready to have the time of your life.
When you arrive…
Firstly – don’t expect a fanfare. Australians are very friendly, but they don’t make a big deal about newcomers: it’s just not the Australian way. Tell people you’re visiting from another country and you’re likely to be met with, “Is that right?” or “Ah, y’don’t say!” rather than a booming warm welcome. That said, Aussies are very accommodating, so you shouldn’t have to look too far before finding someone willing to show you the best place to grab a beer, hit the surf, or find a bite to eat.
If you’re coming to Australia from another country, you may be initially bewildered by a few of our strange quirks and customs. We drive on the left, have a strange obsession with our national sport, and we’re still airing Big Brother. And don’t forget the accent – it can certainly take a few days to adjust to those drawn out vowels and silent “r”s. Don’t get disheartened when you find your potential crush talking in what seems like a foreign language. Just grin and say, “Yeahhh” or “Nahhh” a couple of times, and you’re likely to be right.
Getting to know the locals
Your nearest pub will be the best place to get a feel for the locals. Approach new friends with a casual “How ya going?” and offer to shout them a pint – they’ll appreciate the gesture and may even open up a bit. Keep things moving by asking them which football team they barrack for, or which bands they like.
Aussies can be a bit cagey about certain topics. For example, it’s not considered polite to talk about money, religion or politics with an Aussie, though we tend not to get too riled up about those sorts of things.
If the drinking scene isn’t really your thing, you can always try looking to meet new people online on sites like eHarmony, whether you’re going to be in Sydney (click here for more information) or Brisbane. There’s sure to be someone in your area willing to take a newbie out for a bite to eat or a night on the town.
Anna Leslie is an Aussie expat living and working in New York City. She writes about travel, dating, and relationships for sites including eHarmony (www.eharmony.com.au). She lives in Brooklyn and is obsessed with her iPhone.
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