Vietcetera tells you what phrases in Vietnamese should be known to foreign tourists
Vietnamese is a very difficult language to learn. And Vietnamese culture and traditions are full of nuances that cannot be learned in a short time. However, a few phrases are worth learning. This will not only make life easier, but will also pleasantly surprise locals. After all, everyone is pleased when a foreigner treats his or her culture and language with respect and interest.
Bạn khỏe không – How are you?
Actually, this is a rather formal phrase. You can hear this from your boss. Or in a conversation between a young person and an elderly person. Friends usually use a more informal phrase: “Dạo này sao rồi? That’s a great phrase to use to keep the conversation going.
Cơm ơn (Kam on) – Thank you
That’s a word you’ve probably heard of. And in that case, you have no excuse not to use it. After all, a simple “Kam he” can brighten up someone’s day. Especially if you say it correctly, according to the age of the interlocutor. For example, if it is an elderly person, you can say “Dạ cảm ơn”.
Xin mời (Sin moi) – Please
The phrase pronounced before the meal takes on the meaning of “pleasant appetite”. This is how the host invites guests to the table. If it’s a business meeting or the person you’re talking to just wants to emphasize their respect for you, they can add the same respectful “dạ”.
Xin lỗi (Sin Loi) – Sorry
“Lỗi” in Vietnamese means “misdemeanor.” That is, “Xin lỗi” is used exactly when a person realizes that he has offended someone. Interestingly, Vietnamese does not have the exact equivalent of a purely respectful “sorry”. However, English has been increasingly influencing Vietnamese lately. That’s why there are more and more young people who use “Xin lỗi” when they want to turn to someone or squeeze through someone in a supermarket.
Tôi yêu bạn (Toi iu ban) – I love you
Actually, it’s a rather rare phrase in Vietnamese life. Vietnamese are used to expressing love with gestures and deeds. We present these words so that you do not listen to them in the conversation. The person who will tell you this, most likely, really feels strong feelings for you.
Source: Vietcetera. Translation: Nikita Grebennikov.