In addition to saving the day, gift able come speak a few common Thai greetings and words can also be a good ice-breaker when dealing with locals. Thai people become friendlier when they realise the you are making an effort to find out their language.

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Saying thank you in Thai (Khop Khun), and also hello in Thai (Sawasdee) constantly helps.

Like united state you’ll probably get some pronunciations wrong in the beginning, yet it’s worth maintaining at it. 


First the basics: ‘kha’ vs ‘khap’

Women to speak ‘kha’ and men speak ‘khap’ in ~ the finish of greetings, phrases, and also sentences. You have the right to think of them together polite words, provided to show respect.

Since over there is no English tantamount to kha and also khap, that took united state a if to understand their usage. In the beginning, both Mona and also I only used kha. I offered to wonder why people seem enjoy it at my ‘kha’, and impressed through Mona’s ‘kha’.

(Not just is that wrong for guys to usage kha, the is also a Thai way of implying the a guy is gay.)

(If you google Thailand greetings and phrases, you could see ‘khrap’ instead of ‘khap’, and also ‘Ka’ in location of ‘kha’. They mean the same thing. Us feel the khap and kha sound more accurate).

Video of typical Thailand Greetings & Words


Thank you to all the civilization who volunteered in our video so that we hear the correct pronunciation of the corresponding Thai greeting and also word.

Thai Greetings  

Thai Wai 

The Thai greeting called Wai includes a slim bow, v arms pressed with each other as done while praying. This traditional Thai greeting watch the same as an Indian ‘Namaste’.

Thai human being mostly carry out a Wai as soon as they speak khop khun (thank you), or Sawasdee (hello).

As a non-Thai, you i will not ~ be intended to return a Wai through a Wai. You can simply recognize a Wai through a khop khun kha/khap or Sawasdee kha/khap (as appropriate).


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Performing a Wai in Thailand

1 – Sawasdee kha/khap: Hello in Thai

Sawasdee or hello in Thai is the most common and useful Thai greeting to learn. You’ll listen a many Sawasdee kha/khap in Thailand. Sawasdee can also be provided to say an excellent morning, good afternoon, an excellent evening, good day, and also even great bye. 

Women speak ‘Sawasdee kha’, and men to speak ‘Sawasdee khap’.

(Sawasdee sounds more like Swadee (without the ‘a’ and also ‘s’) – and that’s why girlfriend will frequently see that spelt together ‘Swadee’.) 

2 – Sabai Dee: exactly how are you/Are you well?

Sabai dee is an additional popular Thai greeting.

When request ‘Sabai dee mai’? (How are you/are friend well?), you have the right to reply, ‘Sabai dee, khop khun khap/kha’ (I to be well, give thanks to you). If girlfriend are having a poor day, you can say ‘mai sabai’ (I’m not doing well).

(Mai means no/bad).


Important Thai Words 

3 – give thanks to You in Thai: Khop Khun kha/khap 

The Thai indigenous for thank you is khop khun. It is possibly the most vital Thai word come learn. Thais space polite and also khop khun is a solution that is constantly appreciated.

Women say ‘khop khun kha’, males say ‘khop khun khap’.

4 – Khun: Mr, Mrs, Miss

Khun is a respectful way of addressing married as well as single women and men. That is used in the same method as a Mr, Mrs, or Miss, and also is not gender specific.

In general, Thai world do not resolve people by their surname/last name, Khun precedes offered names. If a Thai human were to attend to Paul Frey (in a polite and respectful way), they would say ‘Khun Paul’.

5 – Yes: Chai / No: Mai

Yes in Thai is ‘Chai’, No is ‘Mai’. Mental to include kha/khap after chai and also mai.

Chai mai way isn’t it?

Mai chai method no, the isn’t.

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6 – Phet: Spicy

If choose us, you love Thai cuisine, keep in mind that Thai bowl in Thailand are much more ‘phet’ or spicy 보다 in other countries. Speak ‘mai phet’ once asking because that non-spicy food, or ‘phet nit nawy’ for a slightly warm meal.

If you answer ‘chai’ (yes) as soon as asked if you desire your food ‘phet mak-mak’ (very-very spicy), remember toilet is dubbed ‘hong nam’.