If you want to understand British movies, TV shows and songs, or if you want to make friends with British people, you need to know these words that we use everyday!

13 British English Slang Words YOU NEED TO KNOW


This means that something or someone a little suspicious or questionable.

For example:

  • Look at that bloke at the bar. He looks a bit dodgy, doesn’t he?


“Knackered” is used when someone is extremely tired. Can also mean something is old or damaged and can’t be used any more.

For example:

  • “I’ve been up studying English all night so I’m absolutely knackered”

Can’t be arsed

This is a less polite version of saying that you can’t be bothered doing something. You might also see this abbreviated to “CBA” in textspeak.

You can say things like:

  • “I can’t be arsed to go out tonight. It’s been a long week at work and I’m absolutely knackered”


Most people think that it means correct or real but in the UK, “proper” is used as an alternative to “very” or “extremely.”

For example:

  • “That pub is proper expensive! It’s £5.80 for a pint!”

Listen to the podcast:

Cock up

This means that something is a mistake or failure. Can be used as a noun or a phrasal verb.


  • “I completely cocked up that presentation at work last week.”


It has three main meanings. Making a toast before drinks in the pub. Saying thank you and saying goodbye.


  • “Cheers for helping me move house last week”


To be really disappointed about something.


  • “I’m gutted we couldn’t get tickets for the new blink-182 tour.”


to be tipsy or slightly drunk. It’s also British slang for being excited or very happy.


  • “I’m buzzing about this party next weekend! I can’t wait!”

Study Hacks Guide

Study Smarter, Not Harder!

No matter what English challenge is at hand, the Study Hacks Guide will help. I’ll give you strategies that will make studying less stressful and more exciting.

Get The Guide NOW


Being broke or having no money. Lacking “fivers” and “tenners”  (see below)


  • “I’ve just had to repair my car and now I am proper skint until I get paid next week”


This is British slang for British pounds. A five pound note is called a fiver and a ten pound note is called a tenner. Small coins are called shrapnel.


  • “Mate, I’ve only got a fiver. Have you got any shrapnel for the vending machine?”


It’s the shortened and easier version of “isn’t it?” It’s seen as a general filler in a conversation or when seeking confirmation.


  • “It’s proper warm, innit?”

Taking the piss

To “take the piss” means to mock, or generally be sarcastic towards something. Can also be used to accuse someone of lying.


  • “My friends took the piss out of me so much last week when I lost my wallet.”


Something we say (or usually shout) when something goes wrong. Like a more sweary version of “oh dear”


  • BOLLOCKS! I forgot to buy milk on the way home!”


Wish you could study anytime, anywhere… Even if you don’t have internet access?

Do you forget the things you have learned in my lessons? Do you want to be able to remember the new words and phrases for longer?

Don’t worry! I have got you covered! You can now get my Study Squad cheat sheets for my lessons!

These Cheat Sheets are a series of exclusive PDFs for learners of all levels. They provide the key points and details from each lesson, for you to study anywhere. The best part? It’s totally free, and you can even create your own textbook!

Join the study squad newsletter today and get access to every cheat sheet right now!