An exercise in Kiwi calculations

Attack these problems with vigor

It’s something you surely can figure

   Do you know which is smaller

   When it comes to a dollar?

And is a quart or a liter the bigger?

Synopsis:  I’m a family practitioner from Sioux City, Iowa.  On sabbatical to avoid burnout, while my non-compete clause ticks away I’m having adventures, visiting family and friends, and working in out-of-the-way places.  Just back from a six-week assignment in Barrow, Alaska, the northernmost point in the United States, right now I’m working on the North Island of New Zealand.


Steve and Bethany drive their rented Toyota Corolla 571 kilometers on 42 liters of petrol (gasoline) which sells for $2.18 NZ per liter. 

1:  Express their mileage in kilometers per liter.

2:  What would you multiply the answer to # 1 by to get miles per gallon?

3:  If the New Zealand dollar is worth $.75 US, how much does gasoline cost them per gallon?

4:  Why does a country so metric still use inch as a verb? 

5:  Why do they talk about their fuel economy as mileage?

6:  Why do they sell their marijuana by the ounce?

7:  Why are cooking measures still in cups and teaspoons?

Steve and Bethany go out for breakfast.  They have eggs, hash browns, and toast for $8.50 NZ each. 

8:  Assuming an exchange rate of $.75 US per $1.00 NZ, what would that breakfast have cost them at home?

9.  How much would that breakfast have cost them in Sioux City, where wait staff expects a 15% percent  gratuity and the government expects 7% tax?

10:  Steve’s 41 kilometer commute takes him 40 minutes.  What is his average speed in miles per hour?

11:  How fast does Steve really want to drive?

12.  Assuming Steve works at Wellsford four days a week for six weeks, how much time is he not getting paid for?

The New Zealand dollar compared to the American dollar varies. 

13:  If the exchange rate changes from $.70 to $.80, how much will Steve gain when he returns to the US?  How much more will expenses cost him in US dollars while he’s there?


1:  13.6

2:  2.5

3:  $6.67

4:  Because there is no such thing as a centimeter worm.

5:  Because kilometerage has too many syllables, especially with the accent on the third syllable.

6:  There’s a reason they call it dope.

7:  The cooking is great.  If you put the recipes into metric they’re not going to work out.  Don’t rock the boat.

8:  $12.75.

9:   $15.55

10:  33 mph.

11:  4 mph, the same as a brisk walk.

12:  33 hours.                                                                                                

13:   Heaps.

No advertising appears here with my permission.


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One Response to “An exercise in Kiwi calculations”

  1. AussieAlaskan Says:

    Enjoy reading your blog – you have moved “down under” but not that close to my location 🙂 Coming to Aus?

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