How To Speak Like A True Newfoundlander and Labradorian 

How To Speak Like A Local

If you are a visitor to Newfoundland and Labrador, you are called a “come from away” and you might be puzzled by some of the things you hear in conversation. 

The locals have their own unique words, expressions, and sayings that came from the early settlers from England, Ireland, and France as well as the relative isolation of the place. They are so unique that they even have their own dictionary: The Dictionary of Newfoundland English.  

To help you acclimatize, here are some of the sayings you might encounter during your stay.  

  • Best kind – That’s great or excellent.
  • Come from Away – A visitor to Newfoundland and Labrador. Also, the title of a hit Broadway play about how the kind people of Gander, Appleton and area took in thousands of stranded passengers from planes diverted due to the 9/11 attacks.
  • Deadly – Great, fantastic. 
  • Fill your boots – Enjoy yourself.
  • God love your cotton socks – Thank you. 
  • Got ’er scald – Things are exactly as you want them. 
  • Got me drove – You’re annoying me. 
  • Got to get me moose b’y – I have to go moose hunting. 
  • G’wan b’y – Don’t be foolish. 
  • Hard ticket – Someone who causes trouble. 
  • Havin’ a time – Having a good time. 
  • He’s got the arse out of ’er – He’s driving very fast.  
  • How ya gettin’ on? – How have you been? 
  • I dies at you – You’re really funny. 
  • Lovely grand – That’s wonderful. 
  • My love, my sweetheart or me duckie – No, the person saying that is not flirting with you. These are just friendly terms of endearment.
  • Nar thing – Nothing. 
  • Now da once – In a while. 
  • Oh me nerves – You’re getting on my nerves.
  • Owshegettinonb’y – How are you? 
  • Proper ting – Good for you.
  • Screeched in – Tradition to make visitors honourary Newfoundlanders and Labradorians by drinking Screech rum, kissing a cod fish and swearing an oath.  
  • Shag it – Forget it. 
  • Stay where you’re at ’til I comes where you’re to – Stay where you are until I come for you. 
  • Stunned as a lump – Dumb as a rock, post, or bag of hammers. 
  • Whadda ya at? – What are you doing? 
  • What a sin – That’s unfortunate. 
  • Who ya ’longs to? or Who knit ya? – Who are your parents? Where are you from? 
  • Yes b’y – Could mean “I agree” or “You can’t be serious.”  
  • You got me drove – You’re driving me crazy.
  • You’re some crooked – You’re in a bad mood.
  • You’re some saucy – You have an attitude. 
  • What odds? – Who cares?


Newfoundland Chocolate Company – Newfoundland sayings bars 

25 Funny Newfoundland Sayings To Learn Before You Visit – Newfoundland Buzz 

Newfinese 101: Words and Phrases You’re Likely to Hear on The Rock | Encounter Newfoundland 

Guide to Newfoundland Slang