Funny Phrases from Around the World!

Sometime things just don’t quite translate! Find out some of the funniest sayings you may encounter on your world travels.

As an avid traveller around the world you may hear some strange phrases. Here are some of the funniest ones we have heard!

France – Avoir les dents longues

Translation: Long in the tooth

Meaning: In most English speaking countries this expression means “old” or “elderly” However; in French, it means “ambitious”

Australia – Flat out like a lizard drinking

Funny Sayings - Australia

Australia is well known for its strange slang words and phrases and this one is no different!

Meaning: To be extremely busy

Find out how to speak fluent Aussie here!

Germany – Das Leben ist kein Ponyhof

Translation: Life isn’t a place for riding ponies

Meaning: Life is tough. You will not get a pony.  Get over it and get on with life

Sweden – Fredagsmys 

Translation: A combination of “friday” and cosy

Meaning: Watching TV, eating junk food and lazing around

Canada – Molson Muscle

Funny Sayings - Canada

Meaning: Many English speaking countries use the term beer belly, but in Canada they use the name of well-known beer called Molson

China – 裸辞(luǒ cí)

Translation: Naked Resignation

Meaning: Quitting your job with no new job

Costa Rica – Jalarse una torta

Translation: To pull a cake

Meaning: To screw something up

Colombia – Mi Llave/Llavería/Llavero

Translation: My key/My keychain

Meaning: Your closest friends

Norway – En rosin i polsen

Funny Sayings - Norway

Translation: A raison in the sausage

Meaning: A nice surprise in something that’s already good


Venezuela – Tengo un ratón en la cabeza

Translation: I have a rat in my head!

Meaning: I have a hangover!

The Bahamas – Join the stiff-toe gang

Meaning: To die

Mongolia –  Burkhan orshoo butin chinee sakhal urga

Translation: God bless you and may your moustache grow like brushwood

Meaning: Polite response to a sneeze

Italy – Avere gli occhi foderati di prosciutto

Funny Sayings - Italy

Translation: To have eyes lined with ham

Meaning: To be unable to see what’s right in front of you

Japan – Nanakorobi ya oki

Translation: Fall seven times, stand eight

Meaning: To get up, no matter how often you get knocked down. To persevere in life even when faced with obstacles

Can you think of any more that you’ve come across while travelling?


Further reading:

How to Speak Fluent Aussie

Find Out Why Airbnb is Airmazing!

A Day in The Life of a Digital Nomad

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