Australian Culture

Australians are famous for being laid back and being a little bit informal. What may seem informal and relaxed attitude even in business does not mean that they are not a serious bunch. Even at first meetings, people refer to each other by first names. But when it comes to business, they are straightforward and pragmatic. Facts and figures are of vital importance because that appeals better than an argument to emotion and aesthetics.

While they enjoy their individuality, you will find that most are affable. They are outgoing and gregarious but also may surprise you with their open and direct ways.

Contrary to what you may believe, most Australians live urban lifestyles but are never far from the beach either. It’s this unique blend of the city-based, cosmopolitan environment and a beach-loving attitude that truly defines how Australians and their world view. Despite the laid-back tag, they are among the hardest working people in the developed world. This tidbit just really gets overshadowed by how much harder they play.


In general, the country is modern and secular but a large multicultural migrant population has also seen the rise of varied religious practices and beliefs. As a nation, it has white, anglo-saxon, and protestant roots, but modern day Australia has embraced key values common to many developed nations. Australians are passionate about their freedom of speech and religion and have among the most progressive world-views on equality that encompasses sex, marital status, religion, nationality, sexual preference, and age. They are a very open and welcoming society that’s very egalitarian with no formal class distinctions.

Among the most endearing Australian qualities is their down-to-earth and self-deprecating manner that is easy to get along with. A good sense of humor is also important but it Aussie humor takes a bit of time to get. A good sense of humor and a “game” attitude is important. These traits are often important to most Australians because they place a high value on relationships. As opposed to asian cultures, Australians show respect by looking people in the eye and their concept of personal space is similar to those of developed countries.

Perhaps among the more noticeable aspects of Australian culture is the distinct twang and accent. In some areas, the accent might be heavier but closer to the urban centers, you will find that the accent tends to acquire more neutrality. Again this is as much a function of an evolving spoken language as well as the steady influx and growth of migrants. If they have difficulty pronouncing your name, they will eventually come up with a nickname that should be taken as a sign of endearment more than anything else.

You will learn to love the witty Australian penchant for giving nicknames to many things. Breakfast becomes brekkie. Macdonald’s become Maccas, a BBQ or barbeque becomes a barbie. Woolworths is woolies.

Sports is a very big thing for Australians. Even if they don’t have an interest in the sport, many typically spend time watching, especially during final events.Rugby, horse racing, and tennis are big spectator sports in Australia so major sporting events like the Melbourne Cup draw huge crowds as well as millions of viewers on the telly. When it comes to sports, Aussies have a penchant for underdogs.