THAI LANGUAGE LESSONS
L6 - More Words and Phrases

Let's increase our vocabulary again with a few more popular words and phrases. This time we will include some that have the 'mai' for a question or the negative 'mai'.

sabai comfortable / well
sabai dee mai ? are you well?
sabai dee I am well
(as reply to above question)
mai sabai I am not well
(also as reply to above question)
ao
(rhymes with 'cow')
want
(informal)
ao mai ? do you want?
mai ao I don't want
baht baht (Thai currency)
bpai go
bpai nai ? where are you going?
bpai tee-ow go out / go around
tam do / make
tam arai ? what are you doing?

sabai - This is another one of those Thai words that is really part of the culture. It can be used for a personal state of well being or comfort. It can also be used to describe the surroundings as comfortable, e.g. if a restaurant has a comfortable, relaxing ambience then Thais will describe it as 'sabai'. Most Thais strive to be 'sabai'.

sabai dee mai ? - This is a common way to ask after someones health. Note the addition of 'dee', the Thai word for good.

sabai dee - This is the standard way to reply yes to a question. Just repeat the question but drop the 'mai' so it becomes a simple statement.

mai sabai - This is almost the standard way to reply no to a question. Simply drop the question 'mai' and put the negative 'mai' on the front of the statement. In this case it is also normal to drop the 'dee'.

ao - This is the informal way to say 'want'. Although in Thai it sounds a little harsh it is still the form you will hear most often.

ao mai ? - This is the standard way to form a question. Add the question 'mai' to the end of the statement to make it 'do you want'.

mai ao - This is one of the phrases that most visitors to Thailand learn early on. How do you tell those annoying hawkers that you don't want what they are selling? You say 'mai ao'.

bpai nai ? - This is a common conversation opener in Thai. This is the reason many Thais will call out to tourists 'where are you going?' To us it sounds a little intrusive but in Thai it is a normal way to engage someone in conversation.

bpai tee-ow - This is a good answer to the 'bpai nai' question. It is a general 'going out' or 'going around'.

tam arai ? - This is another common conversation opener. 'What are you doing?'. Again, in Thai it does not sound as intrusive as it does in English.

 

 

 

 




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