When you’re an English speaker, it can be easy to forget that English is a very diverse language.
However, for North Americans who venture ‘across the pond,’ many experience the strange sensation of knowing the language but not understanding what’s being said.
That’s because the UK is rich with English dialects and accents, both of which have an impact on how a non-native speaker would comprehend what’s being communicated (more on the difference between accents and dialects here).
There are so many sayings – otherwise known as ‘slang or colloquialisms’ – that are unique to each region in the UK, which is home to the countries of Britain, Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland.
Test Your Knowledge of British Slang and UK Colloquialisms
If you want a taste of what it’s like to travel the UK while not leaving your home, you can take our quiz below and find out where you fall on the spectrum: From as ‘smooth as a native UK citizen,’ to ‘North American English only.’
You can listen through audio samples of some of the sayings and phrases that you might hear if you traveled through the UK, take a guess at their North American equivalent and see how you score – then challenge your friends to do the same!
Please note: These recordings have been completed by Voices.com voice over talent, and selected in consultation with a dialect coach. The accents of the UK are incredibly diverse – more so, than we could ever depict in one article, quiz or audio file. However, if you’d like to hear more, you can also travel the world of UK accents in our Accent Map.
Don’t forget to answer ALL the questions so your results will appear at the bottom of the page!