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In Australia, No worries! is a very common way of saying You’re welcome.

I wonder whether it is used this way in other English-speaking countries.

The phrase’s meaning can be understood easily enough in context, so it should therefore be safe to use, but I’m still curious whether it would sound natural to non-Australians.

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    The phrase is very familiar, but to me, it does sound particularly Australian. I almost find it difficult to say it in my own head without the typically Australian drawl that makes it ‘neaahhhrries’. – Janus Bahs Jacquet Dec 7 '13 at 12:50
  • I'm Indian, and it'd be perfectly understood over here, too. It's not an uncommon way of saying "you're welcome" over here. – mikhailcazi Dec 7 '13 at 12:54
  • It's very common in the Western US. – tylerharms Dec 7 '13 at 13:16
  • I use that phrase quite a bit, mostly in writing (emails etc) as opposed to spoken. I usually say no problem when talking...don't know why, just feels more natural. I'm from the East Cost US. – user58946 Dec 7 '13 at 15:54
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    I've come across Japanese people learning English who didn't know it was an Australianism. BTW, there's a Wikipedia article about the phrase! – Andrew Grimm Jan 1 '14 at 0:05
4

In England (and Britain generally, I think) it would be seen as definitely Australian. Not a bad thing, of course, but not 'natural' in your sense.

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    I'm in Britain and don't see this as particularly Australian. – Mynamite Dec 7 '13 at 22:41
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    I feel sure it is Australian in origin, seeming to typify a macho, big-guy, way of responding. It comes with a sub-textual observation that the person putting forth a request or apology is a cowering individual and is likely to be 'worried' about having to approach 'such an important person as me' in a state of apology. Probably goes back to the way those in authority addressed convicts. – WS2 Dec 8 '13 at 1:05
  • When I was a kid in the '80s in the Midlands "no worries" was seen as a real Australianism - however in the past ten years or so, it's become a really common phrase to the point that its probably lost a lot of its Aussieness. That's kind of a shame! But then I use it all the time... how hypocritical... – Andi Mohr Feb 21 '14 at 10:42
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    "seeming to typify a macho, big-guy, way of responding" that's wrong, and it's surprising a "foreigner" would think that! – Fattie Aug 29 '14 at 12:53
2

That phrase is common here in New York City. It is a more relaxed way of saying you’re welcome.

1

It's not as prevalent as in Australia or New Zealand, but you do hear it in the US. I have certainly heard it in Texas.

1

It is commonly used in Canada.

1

I hear (and use) it frequently, but never to say, "you're welcome". As a matter of fact, used that way it would sound odd to me. To me it means what has happened isn't a problem or at least not a big one. "You don't have salmon? No worries, I'll take halibut." Alaskan here.

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It is almost stereotypically Australian. I do have the impression that it's slowly becoming more widespread, certainly in the US.

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Certainly in Australia, no worries can be used to say you’re welcome, but that does not cover it's actual meaning. I've read a lot of articles which say it is the same as no problem but it's not that either.
In all the usages I've heard, it basically says I understand or I appreciate what you are saying, but I don't want to respond with a formal phrase like you're welcome or all is forgiven or I am behind your revolutionary ideas and will follow you into the battle and die by your side.

BTW in Australia instead of no problem we would say she'll be apples or she'll be right.

0

I didn't know it was Australian... I live in New England and I hear some people say it, although it's used more like how "That's okay" or "It's fine" would be used, instead of as a "You're welcome" type of thing. I don't hear a lot of people say it though, but I know my voice teacher does, but she's from the New England Area, too, I believe.

  • Same usage here in the Midwest. I also didn't know it was Australian. – McCaverty Feb 23 '17 at 15:51

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