Wednesday, August 28, 2013

A Few Words to Make your Trip in Philippines Funnier

This is just a survival list of words you will need in Tagalog/Filipino (There are many dialects in the Philippines and not really a bound language). Tagalog is the dialect spoken in Luzon Island(Manila), Palawan, Mindoro so it’s the most widely spoken and the TV is also broadcast in this dialect, but there are many other important like Visayan (Cebuano), Ilocano…

Find here a list of words that I consider useful and will make you win friend between the lovely Filipinos!
 
Whatever you tell them, children will love it!! (So the adults!)
Ate: It means sister. You will use it to address to a girl. You suppose to use Tita if they are older than you, but as foreigner you will be forgiven (plus you might not want to offend the lady).
Ako: I (First person, singular)
Bakit: Why?
Claire seems to be very happy with her Balut...Does she know what I got her?

Balut: It’s the egg with the duck embryo inside. This is a very important word, in case you fancy an egg and they only available is a Balut. You don’t want to eat it unless you are psychologically prepared.

Here you can see the duck baby inside.

Buko: Coconut. Nothing else better as a coconut juice!
Gusto: Like. Same as Pwede, insert it in the sentence to have fun.
Kumusta: How are you? Or just shorter, musta?
Kuya: It means brother, also use it to address to the salesboy, tricycle driver...
Ikaw: You. No need to learn she or he, just use ate XX and/or kuya XY.
Hindi: It means no, but it’s never used. I am not yet sure if the right pronunciation is Hindi or Hinde, as I never hear from anyone. (a servicial Filipino will never say NO!)
Lola/Lolo: Old person, lovely way to call the grandpas or grandmas.
Mabuti: It’s the logical answer of kumusta? Mabuti (fine)
Magandang Umaga/Magandang Gabi: Good Morning, Good Evening. They are hard to remember, but Filipinos will be very impress if you great them like this.
Maganda: I hear this everyday! Lol! It means beautiful. You can also use gwapa/gwapo. Tell to the kids when they greet you: Kumusta, maganda? They love it. You will get a huge smile in reward for your Filipino language skills.
Mahal: Expensive. Also an important word to say to the Filipino/a of your dreams: mahal kita (I love you)
Magkano? How much? You will surprise the seller and will increase the possibilities to get a fair price if you ask:

Using my Filipino skill at the fish market.
 -Ate, magkano mangga?
Instead of:
-Excuse, could you please tell me the price of the mangoes?
By the time you finish your question, the price already adjusted with the “foreigner surcharge”.

Ok, where is the Tindira? I want to try my new skills buying the mangoes!

Oo: It means yes, and they have a especial way to pronounce it.
Pasalubong: Present, gift. When the seller goes inside the bus telling pasalubong, it doesn’t mean that it’s a present for you, there are suggesting you to buy presents for your friends.
Po: Very useful, always add a po at the end of any word to look very polite. It works po.
Pwede: Can I? can you? Just insert a pwede in the sentence to make them laugh.
Talaga: It means really and it will make you look very interesting! talaga??

Tubig: Water. Everyone understands water, but this is easy to remember.
Walang: Nothing. You will make them laugh also, when they tell you:
-Sorry M’am,Sir, Coconut not available!
-Walang Buko? Bakit? 
or if you are surrounded by street kids begging for money, this is the answer: Walang akong pera! (I don’t have coins!) I found another way to get ride of them at the same time we both have fun. Ask me in private if you are curious.


If you also speak Spanish, use it here. Numbers of quantities are told in Spanish, or the hours of the day if you are meeting someone - At three "A las tres"
Uncountable Spanish words are also pronounce in Spanish way but with Filipino grammatic, too many to enumerate. Let me see which one I remember: tinidor, cushillo, cuchara, mesa, baso, riloj, pasaghero, avioneta, barco, bisa, tindira, carpitero, pastillas, yemas, pandesal, sardinas, iglesia, calle...

With around these 25 words of Tagalog, plus your English and your Spanish knowledge, if you have so, you can get along very well in the Philippines. Just add any of the mentioned words into a conversation and the Filipinos will be very surprised: Oh, you speak Tagalog? Oo! You have just win a friend/follower forever!


Any other words that you think it could be useful for foreigner traveler in the Philippines?
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