How to ask “Where is?” or “Which direction to…?” in Vietnamese, as well as common answers to direction questions
Expats in Vietnam should learn the vocabulary about family, which is super important in Vietnam. Mẹ means mother, and Bố imeans father.
The Vietnamese expression for “Happy Birthday!” is Chúc mừng sinh nhật. Learn more about Vietnamese culture surrounding birthdays
The Vietnamese expression for “Help me!” is Cứu tôi với. To call for an ambulance, say Gọi xe cấp cứu đi!
For Valentine’s Day, learn how to say “kiss me” in Vietnamese: Hôn anh đi (for a man to say to a woman); Hôn em đi (for a woman to say to a man)
“You” is commonly translated as bạn in Vietnamese. But, there are numerous second-person pronouns, varying by age, sex and familiarity
From dealing with loud karaoke sounds or disciplining out-of-control children, learn how to politely say “please be quiet” in Vietnamese.
How to say “just a little bit” in Vietnamese, like if someone offers you some alcohol or tea.
There are a variety of ways to say “I love you” in Vietnamese, like “em yêu anh” in North Vietnam, or “em thương anh” in South Vietnam
Trần is one of the most common Vietnamese surnames. In modern Vietnamese it has multiple meanings, like roof-top, naked, and dusty.
Calling someone béo in Vietnamese (fat) is not considered offensive — it is just a matter-of-fact description. Learn about Vietnamese fat culture.
Vãi is “very” in Vietnamese. But, the more fun slang is to say “Vãi đái”, which is like “so f**king awesome”.
“Ối giời ơi”, or just “giời ơi” is pronounced like “zoi oi”. It means “Oh my God!” or “Oh Heavens!” in Vietnamese. People love to hear it.
Đi đi mau translates to “go go, quickly!” in Vietnamese, like “Let’s go!” in English, or “Hurry up! Let’s move!”
When Vietnamese men are drinking, their version of “Cheers!” is: Một, hai, ba, dô! which translates to “one, two, three, go!”
Good bye is Tạm biệt in Vietnamese. The challenge for English speakers is to not say it with a joyful high-pitch intonation, but with a down-tone
Cảm ơn sounds somewhat like “gam un”, including a clear articulation that separates the two words. Không có gì means “you’re welcome”.
Một Hai Ba is Vietnamese for One Two Three. It is approximately pronounced like “Mut” (down-tone) “Hi” (as in Hi!) “Ba” (like a sheep). Audio lessons included.
The Vietnamese word “ấy” is a versatile and useful word in Vietnam. It is like the English catch-all word “thing”. But, it also has a lot of other uses.
The most common Anglicized pronunciation of the Vietnamese family-name Ngô is “No/Know”. However, the correct pronunciation requires some careful study of the VIetnamese “ng” sound.