Jandals are flip flops. They are the national footwear of New Zealand. Second only behind bare feet in popularity, you’ll see them pretty much everywhere you go – at the beach as well as in nice restaurants. The rest of the world may think that flip flops are casual attire but to many kiwis there is no boundary on when you can wear them.
According to a blog I read, the word jandal is short for Japanese sandal. I’m not sure if that’s true but it makes sense. It is winter here but my partner seems oblivious to that and regularly can be seen in shorts and jandals. But it’s not just him, we see that a lot when traveling the countryside although workmen on the farms will have on kiwi working man apparel which I’ll cover another day.
New Zealanders are pretty much the most laid back people I’ve ever met. In the cities there is a sense of fashion and style and of course some people care about that, but the vast majority of kiwis are extremely laid back regarding what they wear. They’ll wear just about whatever is comfortable and they don’t really seem to care if it matches or not. And they don’t really seem to care if you care or not. It’s just whatever, and I love that.