Vietnam is a very hospitable and friendly country which always welcomes foreign travelers no matter what are their nationalities. Despite the popularity of English among countries, learning some Vietnamese phrases or words can help you to avoid some language issues during your trip, since not every Vietnamese can totally understand English. We have listed below some of popular words that can be useful for you.
|Hello/Hi||Xin chào||sin chow|
|Goodbye||Tạm biệt||tam bee it|
|Sorry/Excuse me||Xin lỗi||seen loy|
|Thank you||Cám ơn||gahm un|
|Do you speak English?||Bạn biết nói tiếng Anh không?||ban byet noy tyeng ang kaumng?|
|I don't understand||Tôi không hiểu||toy kohng hugh|
|How are you?||Bạn khoẻ không?||ban kweh kohng|
|Please||Làm ơn||lam uhhn|
Vietnamese people love talking about all things happen around them. Hence, you can start a conversation to Vietnamese people easily. Showing a friendly smile and polite gestures, you would have a chance to make more Vietnamese friends, who can have your back whenever you need them. Below are some of the most basic phrases and sentences you may encounter in Vietnamese’s daily conversions.
|Where is...?||... ở đâu?||…uh doh?|
|I want to go to...||Tôi muốn đến...||toy muan dean...|
|I am lost||Tôi bị lạc||Toy bee lag|
|Can you show me on the map?||Bạn chỉ trên bản đồ được không?||Ban chi tren bawn dau duoc kwnong?|
|How to get to ...?||Đi đến...như thế nào?||Di dean...nhu thea nao?|
Saigon streets are like a labyrinth which can puzzle any first-time visitors. Taxis or motorbike taxis are certainly the ones who know the city like the back of their hand, it would be interesting if you can find the way to get to the destination by asking them. In addition, navigation skills are a must when you travel a hustle and bustle city like Ho Chi Minh City. But the issue can be resolved by some simple words above.
Shopping & Haggle
|How much?||Bao nhiêu tiền?||Bow neuw tee-en?|
|Can you give me a discount?||Bớt được không?||Bot duoc kung?|
|That's too expensive!||Đắt quá!||Dat wa!|
|I can't afford it||Tôi không đủ tiền||Toy kung du tien|
|I will take it||Tôi mua cái này||Toy moo-ah kuy nay|
|I don't want to buy||Tôi không mua||Toy kung moo-ah|
|What is this?||Cái gì đây?||Kie zee day|
When you go shopping at flea markets of tourist attractions, it will require a lot of patience to negotiate with the vendors. It has become an art of haggle when you hunt on good prices. Since the price are occasionally marked up much higher than its real value, you can use some Vietnamese words to deal with them, and your shopping sprees will be free and easy then.
Dining and ordering food
|Bread||Bánh mì||Banh mee|
|Iced coffee with milk||Cà phê sữa đá||Ka fey sooh da|
|Bill, please!||Xin tính tiền||Xin tinh tien|
|Delicious||Ngon quá||Ngon wa|
|I am full||No rồi||No roi|
|I want...||Tôi muốn||Toy muan|
Food is the soul of Vietnamese culture. In fact, Vietnamese cuisine delivers unimaginable flavors and essences into their dishes. If you are on a tight budget, then street food is an ideal option since it is surprisingly cheap and offers an authentic taste of local cuisine. Unfortunately, not any Vietnamese waiter and waitress serving at street vendors can speak English fluently.
Numbers in Vietnamese
|100||Một trăm||moht cham|
|1,000||Một nghìn||moht ngang/ngeen|
|100,000||Một trăm nghìn||moht cham ngang|
|1,000,000||Một triệu||moht chee'ou|
It is vital to know how to pronounce numbers in Vietnamese, since this will help you a lot to get used to Vietnam Dong, which is the official currency in Vietnam. Luckily, Vietnamese numbers are quite easy to learn once you understand its structure, because they are not too different from English numbers.
Days of the week
|Monday||Thứ hai||tuuh "high"|
|Tuesday||Thứ ba||tuuh baah|
|Wednesday||Thứ tư||tuuh thu|
|Thursday||Thứ năm||tuuh nahm|
|Friday||Thứ sáu||tuuh saow|
|Saturday||Thứ bảy||tuuh bayh|
|Sunday||Chủ nhật||chew ngut|
This is exactly the same as the numbers in Vietnamese once you have known how to count. This is because the days are named after numbers in ascending order starting from number 2 (hai), except for Sunday though.