New Jersey Slang

Cori Dunphy
Published on April 19, 2021

New Jersey Slang

There are phrases and words you will ONLY hear in my home state, New Jersey.  Join me today as I  talk about these 16  words or phrases that you will totally understand if you are a Jerseyan,  but if you are from one of those “ other “ states. Whoa, you may be super confused.  

So if you are thinking of moving to the wonderful state of New Jersey,  listen up!   I know you may not believe me, what I promise you, we have our very own New Jersey words.

So get comfortable, grab a beverage because as I mentioned I’m going to give you a list of 16 different words, so we may here awhile!

If you’re from New Jersey,  i’m pretty sure you’ll understand these words and phrases.  I mean, we all know that here in New Jersey we have our own language right?  

Grab a copy of your very own Cheat Sheet right HERE.

Does Central New Jersey Even Exist?

On a side note and to further complicate things, this state is clearly divided into 3 sections.  Even, when it comes to words, phrases and accents.  There is North Jersey,  There is South Jersey, and yes there is a Central Jersey, even though people refuse to acknowledge that we exist.   I mean look at this map, do you notice something missing?  But don’t worry, if you search long enough you will find a map somewhere that acknowledges that Central Jersey is a real place!  Infact, central jersey is such an amazing place i’m going to do a whole entire series dedicated to just that, CENTRAL JERSEY!

So, again, If you are planning on moving here or visiting, you better start studying and learn these words and phrases!  Don’t worry about taking notes, I’ve created a fabulous cheat sheet for you and you can download it after this video.

Coming at number 1.  


Picture of the beach

1. It’s simple it means To the beach. Down the shore is Used in most parts of the state. But it’s definitely used here in Monmouth County. I really have never heard going to the beach said any other way.   It’s literally just like this, “Max what are you doing this weekend:   I”m going down the shore”.


2. Speaking about our fabulous beaches.  Coming in at Number 2 is the word BENNY- that my friends, is  A not such a nice word.  Benny is used to describe people from Bayonne, Elizabeth, Newark, and New York-area residents who “invade” the New Jersey Shore in the summer. This word is used mostly in Monmouth County beach towns. And do you know why it’s used here in Monmouth County?  BECAUSE WE HAVE THE BEST BEACHES, SO THOSE PEOPLE aka Benny’s  INFILTRATE  OUR AREA. 


New York Skyline

3.  That’s easy.  There is ONLY one city when you live in New Jersey.  New York City or Manhattan.  Let’s head to the city and see a show, and of course, show, refers more than likely to broadway.  Are there other types of shows??????


4. Now i’m sure some of you think Wawa is a convenience store, ummm kinda like a 7-11.  I can’t believe that’s what people really think.  Well if it is a convenience store, it’s definitely the best one EVER.  And this convenience store sells more than drinks and snacks.  It also sells gas.  If you live in New Jersey and you say you don’t love wawa, well I’m here to call you a liar. Because, well you’re clearly lying.   You can get so many yummy things at a Wawa, especially coffee.  I still say hands down they have the best coffee and it’s so cheap!  (insert a card here of places to get coffee) which brings us to: 


5. You can get THE BEST subs at Wawa.  And no,  i’m not talking about the big ole boat that goes underwater.  I’m talking about a sub.  (show a photo). You know, a sandwich?  Not to be confused with a Hoagie.  Hoagie is ONLY and I mean ONLY a word used in south jersey.  It sounds so ridiculous, Hoagie????? And because they like to make stuff up, in South Jersey, some even call it a  hero or grinder. Nope, not us Monmouth County people, we eat Subs, and usually from wawa AND occasionally quick check.


6.  Let’s stick with food for now.  This is a big one.  PORK ROLL also known as pork roll and cheese, also known by many as  The best breakfast meat ever.  This delicacy is served on a hard roll with egg and cheese.  This is one of my sons’ favorites.  Which brings us to the next word, number 7


7. So out of curiosity I just asked my 17 year old, Max, what is Taylor ham.  His answer, “ It’s Pork Roll but Bennys’ call it Taylor Ham, because they don’t know anything”.  (show me laughing)  I then asked him what a benny was and to quote him, “those people in North Jersey who come here and use our beaches”.  

Yup, I’m raising a true Central New Jersey boy! Taylor ham does NOT exist here in Monmouth County.  So if you want to try out this yummy breakfast food I’m begging you, please ask for Pork Roll.


Cheese fries

8.  Well us Jerseyans love our food.  Next up on the list is DISCO FRIES.    Huh?  You heard me, disco fries.  (show a disco ball) No not that, They are french fries topped with cheese and gravy.  These are a true diner staple.  Oh and here’s a little fun fact for you.  There are 525 diners in New Jersey, the most of any state. (yup this just may be New Jersey’s claim to fame)


9.  I actually laughed out loud when thinking about this one.  Why, because I say it all the time.  Fillerupcreditregular or Fillerupcashregular.  Now It sounds totally normal to me.  But I can imagine someone who is not from here would look at me like I was crazy if I said that out loud.  So as you all know, or should know, we do NOT pump our own gas here in the Garden State.  Nope, we sure do not.  So when we roll up to gas pump in our cars, (some of us doing the fist pump)  This is what you hear us say, Fillerupcashregular or Fillerupcashcredit.   It’s exactly what it sounds like.  We are telling the attendant to fill our cars up and we will pay cash or credit and we would like regular gas, vs premium.  Easy right?  


10.  Okay we can leave food for now.  Let’s talk about number 11,  The Boss.  If you are from anywhere outside of New Jersey, you may know his as Bruce Springsteen. But to us, he’s simply, “The Boss”, or to me, he’s a piece of well ya know.


11. This is one of my very favorites.  The word EXIT.  This short, little word is the number you give to someone when they ask where you live. LOL, it’s true.  If someone asks where I live, I simply say, just a few miles of exit 118.  Now because the number is 118, they know I’m referring to the GSP, or Garden State Parkway.  If I would have said about 30 minutes off of exit 11, they would know right away I was talking about the turnpike.  We are very obsessed with our roads in this state.  VERY.


12.  So that brings me to number 12.  This is one of my favorites to explain when someone is visiting from out of state and visiting New Jersey. JUGHANDLE!  Not to be confused with a U-turn.  It NEVER gets old trying to explain this to someone.  A jughandle is simply New Jersey’s way of making a right-hand turn to go left?  (insert photo)Sometimes a setup is used where traffic on the side road cannot turn left at the intersection but turns left after it, merging with the main road. This is most often used for Uturns 


picture of a boat in atlantic city

13. AC Not just an abbreviation for air conditioner… Atlantic City, where we spend many of our 21st birthdays. It’s also a popular bus trip destination from many of the adult communities located in New York and New Jersey.


14.   Come on do I really have to explain?  Doesn’t every like to walk the boards?  It’s just as shortened way to refer to one of the 26 boardwalks in NJ.  Why do we want to stop and say board walk?  It’s too long.  We just like to do down the shore and hit the boards?


15. And finally number 16 , although I could easily come up with 20 other terms we use here in NJ.  Infact, I just may do that in a video one day.  PLAIN PIE  It’s a plain pie.  Cheese is totally a given.  I hear the rest of the country orders it as a cheese pizza?  I mean we all know pizza has cheese right?  

So that’s it for now.  Although I really think I could go on and on with words and phrases we all use here in New Jersey.  There are so many amazing things, and well not so amazing things about living in the Garden State.  So check back often as I share information with you all about New Jersey, Monmouth County, and Real Estate.  

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