The current study examined the role of native language on the perceptual similarity space of regional dialect variation. Native and non-native speakers of American English were asked to group a set of talkers by regional dialect in a free classification task. The two listener groups exhibited similar dialect classification strategies and perceptual similarity structures. However, the non-native listeners were less accurate overall than the native listeners and relied heavily on a few salient acoustic cues to make their classifications. These results suggest that non-native listeners can use lawful variation in the acoustic signal to make dialect classification judgments, but that cultural and linguistic familiarity also play a role in shaping perceptual dialect categories.