Common Canadian Slang Words You Need to Know

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Canadian slang words

The English spoken in Canada is quite different than the English spoken in the US, UK or Australia. Many of the words Canadians consider self-explanatory are in fact Canadian slang words, so be sure to familiarize yourself with these common terms before travelling.

Keep in mind that Canadian slang words vary from province to province, so it’s unlikely you’ll encounter them all on your Canadian vacation.


Eh?

Pronounced “ay”

This classic Canadian term can be translated in several ways.  The most common are using it at the end of a question in place of “right?” or “wouldn’t you agree?”, or using it to indicate confusion, similar to “huh?” “what?” and “pardon”?

In a sentence: “That was a great concert, eh?”


Oh yea, no for sure

A runabout way to say “yes”.

In a sentence: “Would you mind helping me move the couch?” “Oh yea, no, for sure.”


Tuque  
Alternate spellings: toque, touque, tuke

Pronounced “too-hk”

A winter hat with or without a small brim. A toque is often referred to as a beanie in the rest of the world.

In a sentence: “Don’t forget to pack your tuque in case it gets cold.”


Keener

An individual who is over-eager or extremely keen. This term is often used in schools and the workplace and can be interchanged with words such as “brown-noser”, “suck-up” and “overachiever”.

In a sentence: “Bob is such a keener for taking on that extra project.”


Timmies
Also called: Tims

The term Timmies refers to the coffee shop Tim Hortons, which was named after a famous Canadian hockey player.

In a sentence: “I’m on my way to Timmies, can I get you something?”


Double-Double

Regular coffee with two creams and two sugars. This term originated at Tim Hortons, Canada’s most popular coffee shop.

In a sentence: “Would you mind picking me up a medium double-double on your way home?


Timbits

Doughnut holes which can be purchased at Tim Hortons.

In a sentence: “I’d like a box of Timbits with my coffee.”


Kerfuffle

Originally a British slang word, Kerfuffle refers to a disturbance, commotion, argument, or fight caused by conflict.

In a sentence: “This years elections have caused quite the kerfuffle.”


Mountie

Canadian slang words - mountie

A Mountie is a member of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP).

In a sentence: “My favourite part of the parade was seeing the Mounties on horseback.”


Stag or Stagette

Canada’s name for a bachelor or bachelorette party.

In a sentence: “I’m excited to go to Jane’s stagette this weekend.”


Pop

Pop is the Canadian term for carbonated beverages. Elsewhere in the world pop is often referred to as a “soft drink” or “soda”.

In a sentence: “What types of pop do they serve at the restaurant?”


Canuck

The term Canuck is slang for a Canadian person. Not to be confused with the Vancouver Canucks hockey team.

In a sentence: “There were so many Canucks on the airplane from Toronto.”


Loonie & Toonie

Loonies and toonies are what Canadians call their $1 and $2 coins. The loonie got its name from the loon on the front of the coin, while the toonie got its name to rhyme with the loonie and to indicate it’s worth two dollars.

In a sentence: “I can’t believe my luck, I found a toonie on the ground!”


Freezies

Canadian slang words - freezie

An icy summer treat that comes in a clear plastic tube.  Often called ice pops or freeze pops, freezies are made of frozen water and flavouring (often fruit juice).

In a sentence: “My kids love to eat freezies to cool down after playing outside.”


Two-four

A case of 24 beers. Don’t confuse this with May 2-4, a long weekend in May which celebrates Queen Victoria’s birthday.

In a sentence: “Don’t forget to pick up a two-four for our May 2-4 camping trip.”


Mickey

A mickey is a 375ml bottle of liquor which is often shaped like a flask.

In a sentence: “I stopped by the liquour store to pick up a mickey of rye.”


Texas mickey

A 3 liter (101 ounces) bottle of alcohol usually containing vodka, rum, or Canadian rye whiskey.

In a sentence: “He was quite the hit when he showed up at the party with a Texas mickey.”


Klick
Alternate spelling: Click

This word is used in place of kilometer, which is a unit of length in the metric system. A kilometer represents 1000 meters.

In a sentence: “There’s a gas station up the road, I think it’s about three klicks away.”


Give’r

A slang word meaning to exert a much effort or energy into a task. This term is often used in sports and the workplace.

In a sentence:  “You can do it! Just give’r!”


Runners

A term used when referring to running shoes, sneakers, tennis shoes, or any type of athletic footwear.

In a sentence:  “My runners got wet when I tried to jump over the puddle.”


Dart

A slang word for cigarette.

In a sentence: “Can you spare a dart?”


Gotch(ies)
Also called: ginch(ies), gitch(ies) or gonch(ies)

Derived from the word “gatky” (Ukranian for underwear), gotchies refer to tight men’s underwear. They are typically called “tighty-whities” in other countries.

In a sentence: “My husband insists on wearing his gotchies even after they get a hole.”


Homo milk

Milk with 3.25% fat, also known as homogenized milk.

In a sentence: “I need to stop by the grocery store to pick up some homo milk for the baby.”


Beauty

A term used to describe someone great, or something that is well done.

In a sentence: I’ll need to thank your Mom for the casserole, she’s such a beauty.”


Screech

A type of dark rum sold in Newfoundland containing 40% alcohol by volume.


Screech-in

A ceremony which is performed on non-Newfoundlanders. It involves a shot of Newfoundland Screech, a short dictation, and the kissing of a cod.


Pencil crayons

Another way to say coloured pencils.

In a sentence: “The teacher passed around the pencil crayons for the students to share.”


Washroom

The Canadian term for bathroom or restroom.

In a sentence: “There was no paper towel left in the washroom.”


Kitty-Corner

A term used when referring to two locations (usually business or house) that are positioned diagonally opposite one another.

In a sentence: “The burglars targeted the store kitty-corner to the casino.”


Hang a Larry

Take a left turn.

In a sentence: “Hang a Larry at the next stop sign”


Hang a Roger

Take a right turn.

In a sentence: “Hang a roger on the next street.”


Knapsack

Another term for a backpack.

In a sentence: “Mary lost her knapsack on the fieldtrip.”


LCBO
Also called: Lick-bo

An acronym for the Liquor Control Board of Ontario, which is the name for a provincially owned store licensed to sell alcohol in the province of Ontario. Most provinces have their own provincially owned retail outlets licensed to sell alcohol. Their acronyms are as follows: SAQ (Quebec), NBLC (New Brunswick), NSLC (Nova Scotia), NLC (Newfoundland), PEILCC (Prince Edward Island), YLC (Yukon), NWTLC (Northwest-Territories) and AGLC (Alberta).

In a sentence: “Be sure to take your wallet with you to the LCBO, you might get ID’d.”


Dep

An abbreviation for the French word dépanneur, which is what they call convenience stores in Quebec.

In a sentence: “I’ll need to grab some milk from the dep on my way home.”


Hydro bill

The Canadian term for an electricity bill.

In a sentence: “We were shocked at the cost of our hydro bill last month.”


The Habs

A term used when referring to the Montreal Canadiens hockey team.

In a sentence: “The Habs are playing the Leafs at the Scotiabank Arena tonight.”


Gong show

An event that gets out of control.

In a sentence: “Once they started drinking it became a total gong show.”


Snowbirds

Definition #1 – The name of the aerobatics or air show flight demonstration team belonging to the Royal Candian Air Force.

In a sentence: “The audience was in awe watching the Snowbirds perform.”

Definition #2 – A term used to describe Canadians who travel south during the cold of winter.

In a sentence: “Her parents are snowbirds. In fact, they bought a condo in Florida last year.”


Now that you know some of the most popular Canadian slang words you are ready to strike up a conversation with any Canadian. Go for it!



What other Canadian slang words do you know? Tell us about them in the comments below!


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2 thoughts to “Common Canadian Slang Words You Need to Know”

  1. Nice post, my family and I will be traveling to Canada next month. Knowing the slang will be helpful especially when asking for directions! If someone tells us to hang a larry or hang a roger I will know what they mean! I’m also looking forward to getting some Timbits:)

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