Hi, or should I say “g’day mate”. If you have recently arrived in a Australia you might be confused by our laid back greetings. If you don’t know already “g’day” is just a casual form of “hello”. Australians are pretty casual people. “Hello” and “hi” or even an affectionate “hey” are ways we greet each other.
De-mystifying Aussie Communication – Part 2 Greetings
You might also notice our tendancy to follow our greeting with one of the following questions. “How are you going?”, “How are you doing?” or the slightly more confusing versions “how ya goin’?”, how ya doin’?”, or “How’s it hangin?’”. (Warning, Aussies will abbreviate anything given the chance!) They all basically mean “how are you?” It’s a conversation starter. A “hi, I’m good thanks, how are you?” is completely appropriate. It is also appropriate to add a little more abut how you are and what’s been going on.
And what about the physical greeting? We will use a handshake on first meeting with all genders, do be aware however that some individuals will give a brief hug or kiss on the cheek even at first meeting. This usually happens when you with people who you are already somewhat connected with (like meeting a friends friend for the first time).
So this is the social norm in Australia. If you want some ideas on how to negotiate these cultural differences… I wrote a guest blog on this very topic here:
Image by Aleksandra Mazur