List of countries
Travel in Europe
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Travel in Europe :
Travel in France
Travel in Belgium
Travel in Finland
Travel in Germany
Travel in Asia :
Travel in America :
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Oceania : Australasia
Australasia is composed primarily of Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea and adjacent islands. Ecologically it includes East Timor and the eastern parts of Indonesia as far as Lombok and Sulawesi. Most of Australasia is also part of Oceania.
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Australia and New Zealand are both former British colonies. At one time it was envisaged that the two colonies would become a single country and the Australian constitution still permits New Zealand to join as another state. The two countries enjoy a Closer Economic Relationship (CER) with free trade and relatively unrestricted travel. Both countries are working on joint national standards, with notable progress being made in unified food legislation.
Although these two countries work closely together in many respects, they have differing political directions, both internally and externally, and present sometimes opposing outlooks on the world. The prospect of a stronger political union seems unlikely at present, though both countries co-operate readily across a wide range of issues.
Papua New Guinea was, at one time, an Australian dependency.
English is the official language spoken in Australia and New Zealand. While formal English will be understood, some slang and colloquial terms may cause unexpected problems for the traveller. There are numerous guides available for understanding the finer points of Strine (Australian English) and Newzilid (New Zealand English). The best guide is probably the one that you are talking to at the time. If in doubt, ask, directly. The American habit of using euphemistic terms or trying to be too polite can cause confusion and misinterpretation. Also do not be offended by some of the slang words used, their colloquial usage and cultural context means they have lost some of their offensiveness - though slang should be avoided if possible as some words have acquired other meanings.
Maori is an official language in New Zealand. Many New Zealand placenames are of Maori origin. Mispronouncing these names is easily done by English speakers unfamiliar with Maori and will often render the name unintelligible to New Zealanders. While relatively few New Zealanders speak Maori conversationaly, (though many are learning), almost all of them cringe when Maori placenames are mispronounced.