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Difference between New Zealand Accent and Australian Accents

Difference between New Zealand Accent and Australian Accents

Accents have the power to give us instant clues as to where a person has grown up or has lived for a long period of time. Even non-native English speakers like myself, who grew up in Tokyo, can often tell if someone is from Britain or the United States when they speak. But today we’re going to focus on two accent variants that sound quite similar – those of New Zealand and Australia!

While these accents may be geographically similar and closely related, there are subtle differences between them that might surprise you. Over the course of this post, I will explain how New Zealanders and Australians differ when it comes to their accents and dialects so that you’ll be able to identify each unique accent with ease!

What is New Zealand Accent?

New Zealand Accent is a unique form of English spoken by New Zealanders. It is recognized for its harsh, but melodic intonation, long vowels, and numerous glottal stops.

  • New Zealanders may also drop the ‘g’ sound on words like ‘takin’ or replace it with a simple ‘t’ such as “I was talkin’ to him” being uttered as “I was talkin’ to him”.
  • New Zealand Accent has been altered and mixed with other accents, such as American and British due to New Zealand’s close proximity to Australia and New Zealand respectively.
  • For example “fish” is often pronounced “feesh”. New Zealand Accent is unique in the world and can be easily recognized, allowing people from New Zealand to be identified just based on their accent.

What is the Australian Accent?

  • Australian Accent is an interesting term that has existed for many years. It is often used as a placeholder to describe any Australian person’s voice, but its definition varies greatly across the country depending on region and age.
  • Australian accents are known to be a mix of British, Irish, and Aboriginal influences with certain characteristics such as a languid tone, a flattened “a” sound, and a tendency to shorten words in certain situations.
  • Australian accents can also vary between men and women depending on their upbringing, ethnicity, or even location. With the rise in popularity of Australian films, television shows, and music, Australian Accent is becoming more widely heard as it continues to grow in influence around the world.

Difference between New Zealand Accent and Australian Accents

New Zealand and Australia share a common history, but their accents differ greatly.

  • New Zealanders typically have a mellow intonation while Australians accentuate syllables and syllable endings are drawn out toward the end of a sentence.
  • New Zealand also has an infamous “Kiwi twang” whereby words like too and new begin with a diphthong or sound such as “too-oh” rather than the typical Australian “tuh”.
  • New Zealand speech is often considered to be very understandable compared to other countries which makes communication between New Zealand and Australia fairly accessible, however, New Zealanders may struggle to comprehend some of their Aussie neighbours.

All in all, New Zealand and Australian accents provide unique variations on how to speak English, whether it be from the other side of the globe or just down the street.


Although there are many differences between New Zealand and Australian English, the two varieties are more similar than they are different. The main difference between these accents is in the vowel sounds. New Zealanders tend to use a higher pitch when speaking, which makes their speech sound more nasal.

Australians, on the other hand, have a more relaxed way of speaking and use a lower pitch. If you’re trying to learn either of these accents, it’s important to listen to native speakers so that you can mimic their intonation and pronunciation patterns. With some practice, you’ll be able to perfect your own version of either accent!

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