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Archive for the 'Thai Phrases' Category

Appreciating Our Mentors: Teachers’ Day in Thailand

Teachers are valued in every country around the world, but few nations show teachers their due respect like Thailand does. This is reflected in Thai Teachers’ Day, celebrated each year to encourage the humility of students before their teachers. 

In this article, you’ll learn all about Teachers’ Day in Thailand, from its recent beginnings to how it’s celebrated. Let’s get started!

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1. What is Teachers’ Day?

A Teacher Standing in Front of a Blackboard

National Teachers’ Day is a Thai holiday celebrated each year on January 16. On this day, students go out of their way to show their teachers ความเคารพ (khwaam khao-róp), or “respect.” 

It was General Phiboonsongkram who first suggested the creation of Teachers’ Day in Thailand. He spoke on the topic with teachers, the mass media got involved in promoting the holiday’s implementation, and the National Cabinet made it an official holiday in 1956. The first celebration took place the next year in 1957. 

This holiday is rooted in the belief that teachers are some of the most valuable contributors to society, and as such, deserve to be recognized and appreciated for their devotion. This extends not only to school teachers, but to teachers in any field of life. 

Thai people often associate the profession of teaching with that of the taxi-boat profession. The taxi-boat service was once a crucial element of Thai society because Thai people traveled largely by river in the past. Just as a taxi-boat driver takes passengers to their destination and goes back for more passengers, so do teachers bring students to their destinations and continue to do so for students over the years. Teachers are seen as a path to the future. 


2. Teachers’ Day Traditions and Celebrations

A Student Giving Her Teacher Gift

In Thailand, Teachers’ Day celebrations begin the day before. 

Every โรงเรียน (roong-riian), or “school,” in the nation hosts special events honoring teachers. The first activity is for teachers and students to make merit by offering food to the monks. Afterward, students honor their teachers by bringing them a พานไหว้ครู (phaan wâai khruu), or “flower tray with candles and incense,” and bowing at their feet. In addition, there are competitions to see which student can create the best Teachers’ Day slogan; the winner receives a small scholarship. 

In some high schools, students may give speeches on this day to reflect on the influence of teachers in their lives. Teachers themselves are encouraged to think back on their own teachers. 

Teachers’ Day celebrations in Thailand involve a lot of symbolism. There are four symbols that are particularly important: 

  • ดอกเข็ม (dàawk khĕm), or “Ixora,” flowers.

    Ixora flowers have sharp petals, which represent a sharp mind.
  • Eggplant flowers.

    Eggplant flowers grow downward, which represents the humility of students toward their teachers and their willingness to เรียน (riian), or “study.”
  • Cynodon grass.

    Cynodon grass grows easily, which represents the growth of students’ knowledge.
  • Tok rice.

    Tok rice is a white rice that has been roasted and popped, representing the ability of students to flourish and shine brightly with enough discipline.

Visit our ‘Plants’ Culture Class lesson to learn about five other plants that are common in Thailand.

3. The Wai Kru Ceremony

การศึกษา (gaan sùek-sǎa), or “education,” is taken very seriously in Thailand, as is the art of teaching. So it should come as no surprise that there is another special day for teachers in Thailand: Wai Kru, or Teacher Appreciation Day. This ceremony takes place near the beginning of the Thai school year (normally mid-May), and involves students showing respect and humility toward their new teachers. 

The most important activities for this day include saying a Buddhist prayer, reciting a chant, offering gifts to teachers, and engaging in special performances. Sometimes, the head teacher of a school will give a speech and present awards to certain students. 

Wai Kru in Thailand is also performed outside of the formal education system. For example, it is popular in the arts. 

4. Essential Vocabulary for Teachers’ Day in Thailand

Flower Tray with Candles and Incense

Now let’s review some of the words from this article, plus a few more! 

  • สอน (sǎawn) – “teach” [v]
  • โรงเรียน (roong-riian) – “school” [n]
  • การศึกษา (gaan sùek-sǎa) – “education” [n]
  • ครู (khrŭu) – “teacher” [n]
  • นักเรียน (nák-riian) – “student” [n]
  • เรียน (riian) – “study” [v]
  • กตัญญู (gà-dtan-yuu) – “grateful” [adj.]
  • ดอกเข็ม (dàawk khĕm) – “Ixora” [pr. n]
  • เรียนรู้ (riian rúu) – “learn” [v]
  • ความเคารพ (khwaam khao-róp) – “respect” [n]
  • พานไหว้ครู (phaan wâai khruu) – “flower tray with candles and incense” [n]

Remember that you can hear the pronunciation of each word on our Teachers’ Day vocabulary list! 

Final Thoughts

We hope you enjoyed learning about this popular Thai holiday with us, and that you’re feeling inspired to keep studying. Is there a Teachers’ Day celebration in your country? Or maybe a particular teacher you are กตัญญู (gà-dtan-yuu), or “grateful,” to have had in your life? Let us know in the comments! 

To learn even more about Thai culture and holidays, you can read the following blog posts from ThaiPod101.com:

And this is only a sample of what we have in store for you! Create your free lifetime account today to gain access to numerous learning resources, themed vocabulary lists, and fun audio and video lessons. We make learning Thai easy and enjoyable, so what are you waiting for? 

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Different Ways to Say Goodbye in Thai

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In Thailand, there’s a saying we apply to our daily interactions with others: ไปมาลาไหว้ (bpai-maa-laa-wâi). In English, this means: “You should say hello and goodbye when you meet and part from each other.”

If you read our article on How to Say Hello in Thai, you’re already halfway there! Today, we’re going to teach you some different ways to say goodbye in Thai so that you can end your conversations with social finesse! 

By using these popular Thai goodbye phrases, you’ll sound more like a native speaker and will more easily form long-lasting relationships with natives. As you study them, you’ll also gain more cultural insight about Thailand and her people! 

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Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Thai Table of Contents
  1. Before We Start…
  2. Specific Ways to Say Goodbye in the Thai Language
  3. Phrases to Accompany Your Goodbye
  4. Actions Thai People Do When Saying Goodbye
  5. Conclusion

1. Before We Start…

Before we teach you how to say goodbye in Thai, let’s look at some new vocabulary:  

Keep in mind that the second word, ลาก่อน (laa-gàawn), is rarely used in day-to-day life. 

Instead, the most common way to say goodbye in Thai is สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii), which means “goodness,” “beauty,” “prosperity,” and “safety.” Due to its positive meanings, Thai people use this word for both greetings and farewells.  

If you happen to be in Thailand (or meet Thai people elsewhere), and want to impress them, you can always end your conversation with สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii) and do an action called ไหว้ (wâi).

2. Specific Ways to Say Goodbye in the Thai Language

Most Common Goodbyes

Apart from saying สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii), there are a couple of other phrases you can use to say goodbye.

1 – บ๊าย บาย

Thai pronunciation: báai-baai
English translation: “Bye”

Explanation:
This Thai word for goodbye actually comes from English. Thai people often use this in casual situations, usually among friends or family. However, keep in mind that Thai people don’t ไหว้ (wâi) when saying this; instead, they just wave goodbye.

Example:
หนูไปหาเพื่อนก่อนนะแม่ บ๊ายบาย
nǔu-bpai-hǎa-phûuean-gàawn-ná-mâae báai-baai
“I am going to meet my friend now. Bye.” [Talking to your mother]

A Woman Waving Goodbye

I am going to meet my friend now. Bye.

2 – แค่นี้นะ

Thai pronunciation: khâae-níi-ná
English translation: “Bye”

Explanation:
This is how to say goodbye in Thai before hanging up the phone.

Example:
เดี๋ยวพรุ่งนี้เจอกัน แค่นี้นะ
dǐiao-phrûng-níi-jooe-gan khâae-níi-ná
“See you tomorrow. Bye.”

3. Phrases to Accompany Your Goodbye

There are various phrases that Thai people say together with สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii). Some of these phrases are similar to their English counterparts, which should give you a healthy head-start! 

1 – ขอตัวก่อน

Thai pronunciation: khǎaw-dtuua-gàawn
English translation: “I have to go.”

Explanation:
You can use this phrase in formal situations, such as in business meetings or when you speak to elders. You should say this phrase before saying สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii).

Example:
หลังจากนี้ ผมมีนัดลูกค้าอีกท่านไว้ ต้องขอตัวก่อนครับ สวัสดีครับ
lǎng-jàak-níi phǒm-mii-nát-lûuk-kháa-ìik-thâan-wái dtâawng-khǎaw-dtuua-gàawn-khráp sà-wàt-dii- khráp
“I have an appointment with another customer after this. I have to go now. Goodbye.”

Man and Woman Chatting each Other

I have an appointment with another customer after this. I have to go now. Goodbye.

2 – ขอตัวกลับก่อน / กลับแล้ว

Thai pronunciation: khǎaw-dtuua-glàp-gàawn / glàp-láaeo
English translation: “I’m heading home.”

Explanation:
This phrase is suitable for specific situations, namely when you’re about to leave for home. You should say it before สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii) or บ๊าย บาย (báai-baai). The difference between the two phrases is that ขอตัวกลับก่อน (khǎaw-dtuua-glàp-gàawn) is used in formal situations, while กลับแล้ว (glàp-láaeo) is used in casual situations.

Example 1:
วันนี้ฉันรู้สึกไม่ค่อยดี ต้องขอตัวกลับก่อน สวัสดีค่ะ
wan-níi-chǎn-rúu-sùk-mâi-khâauy-dii dtâawng-khǎaw-dtuua-glàp-gâawn sà-wàt-dii-khà
“I’m not feeling well today. I’m heading home. Goodbye.”

Example 2:
กลับแล้วนะ จะรีบไปดูละคร บ๊าย บาย
glàp-láaeo-ná jà-rîip-bpai-duu-lá-khaawn báai-baai
“I’m heading home now, as I want to get back in time for the TV drama. Bye.”

3 – ขอตัวไปก่อน / ไปแล้ว

Thai pronunciation: khǎaw-dtuua-bpai-gàawn / bpai-láaeo
English translation: “I have to go.”

Explanation:
Despite having the same meaning as ขอตัวก่อน (khǎaw-dtuua-gàawn), these phrases are used in different situations. You should say them before สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii) when you’re leaving to go somewhere (but not to your place). The difference between the two phrases is that ขอตัวไปก่อน (khǎaw-dtuua-bpai-gàawn) is used in formal situations, while ไปแล้ว (bpai-láaeo) is used in casual situations.

Example 1:
ครูคะ หนูขอตัวไปก่อนนะคะ สวัสดีค่ะ
khruu-khá nǔu-khǎaw-dtuua-bpai-gâawn-ná-khá sà-wàt-dii-khà
“I have to go. Goodbye.” [Talking to your teacher]

Example 2:
ไปแล้วนะ เดี๋ยวออกสายแล้วรถติด บ๊าย บาย
bpai-láaeo-ná dǐiao-àawk-sǎai-láaeo-rót-dtìt báai-baai
“I have to go now or else the traffic will be really bad. Bye.”

4 – แล้วเจอกัน

Thai pronunciation: láaeo-jooe-gan
English translation: “See you.”

Explanation:
You say this phrase before saying สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii) or บ๊าย บาย (báai-baai).

Example:
ต้องไปแล้วนะ แล้วเจอกันพรุ่งนี้ บ๊าย บาย
dtâawng-bpai-láaeo-ná láaeo-jooe-gan-phrûng-níi báai-baai
“I have to go now. See you tomorrow. Bye.”

5 – แล้วจะมาใหม่

Thai pronunciation: láaeo-jà-maa-mài
English translation: “I will come back again.”

Explanation:
You say this phrase before saying สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii) or บ๊าย บาย (báai-baai).

Example:
ยายขา หนูกลับแล้วนะคะ แล้วจะมาเยี่ยมใหม่ค่ะ สวัสดีค่ะ
yaai-khǎa nǔu-glap-láaeo-ná-khá láaeo-jà-maa-yîiam-mâi sà-wàt-dii-khà
“I am going home now, but I will come back to visit you again. Goodbye.” [Talking to your grandmother]

6 – ขอลาไปก่อน / ขอลาไปแต่เพียงเท่านี้

Thai pronunciation: khǎaw-laa-bpai-gàawn / khǎaw-laa-bpai-dtàae-phiiang-thâo-níi
English translation: “This is the end of the show.” (Not literal translation)

Explanation:
This phrase is used only in TV shows or news channels before the words สวัสดี (sà-wàt-dii). 

Example 1:
ช่วงนี้ฝนตก ท่านผู้ชมระวังรักษาสุขภาพด้วย ต้องขอลาไปแต่เพียงเท่านี้ สวัสดีครับ
chûuang-níi-fǒn-dtòk thâan-phûu-chom-rá-wang-rák-sǎa-sùk-khà-phâap-dûuai dtâawng-khǎaw-laa- bpai-dtàae-phiiang-thâo-níi sà-wàt-dii-khráp
“It has been raining a lot recently, so please take care of your health. This is the end of the show. Goodbye.”

Example 2:
ขอขอบคุณแขกรับเชิญทุกท่าน ขอลาไปก่อน สวัสดีค่ะ
khǎaw-khàawp-khun-khàaek-ráp-chooen-thúk-thâan khǎaw-laa-bpai-gàawn sà-wàt-dii-khà
“Thank you to all the guests today. This is the end of the show. Goodbye.”

A Camera Man Doing His Job

Thank you to all the guests today. This is the end of the show. Goodbye.

7 – เดินทางปลอดภัย / เดินทางดี ๆ นะ

Thai pronunciation: dooen-thaang-bplàawt-phai / dooen-thaang-dii-dii-ná
English translation: “Have a safe trip.”

Explanation:  
Thai people often wish or bless other parties to have a safe trip when saying goodbye. The difference between the two phrases is that เดินทางปลอดภัย (dooen-thaang-bplàawt-phai) is used in formal situations, while เดินทางดี ๆ นะ (dooen-thaang-dii-dii-ná) is used in casual situations.

Example 1:  
ดึกแล้ว เดินทางดี ๆ นะ บ๊าย บาย
dùek-láaeo dooen-thaang-dii-dii-ná báai-baai
“It is late at night now, so I hope you have a safe trip. Bye.”

Example 2:  
ขอบคุณที่ใช้บริการ ขอให้ทุกท่านเดินทางปลอดภัย สวัสดีค่ะ
khàawp-khun-thîi-chái-baaw-rí-gaan khǎaw-hâi-thúk-thâan-dooen-thanng-bplàawt-phai sà-wàt-dii- khà
“Thank you for using our service. We hope you have a safe trip. Goodbye.”

8 – ขอบคุณสำหรับ…

Thai pronunciation: khàawp-khun-sǎm-ràp-wan-níi
English translation: “Thanks for ___.”

Explanation:  
Thai people say this phrase to show that they’re thankful for something the other party did or offered to do.

Example:  
ขอบคุณสำหรับอาหารเย็นวันนี้ อร่อยมากค่ะ ตอนนี้ต้องขอตัวกลับก่อน สวัสดีค่ะ
khàawp-khun-sǎm-ràp-aa-hǎan-yen-wan-níi a-ràauy-mâak-khà dtaawn-níi-dtâawng-khǎaw-dtuua- glàp-gàawn sà-wàt-dii-khà
“Thanks for the dinner today. It was delicious. Now, I have to go back home. Goodbye.”

9 – ดูแลตัวเองดี ๆ นะ

Thai pronunciation: duu-laae-dtuua-eeng-dii-dii-ná
English translation: “Take good care of yourself.”

Explanation:  
This is what Thai people say to show that they care about the other party.

Example:  
พรุ่งนี้เดินทางไปญี่ปุ่นคนเดียว ดูแลตัวเองดี ๆ นะ บ๊าย บาย
phrûng-níi-dooen-thaang-bpai-yîi-bphùn-khon-diiao duu-laae-dtuua-eeng-dii-dii-ná báai-baai
“Tomorrow, you have to go to Japan alone, so take good care of yourself. Bye.”

10 – ดูแลสุขภาพด้วย / รักษาสุขภาพด้วย

Thai pronunciation: duu-laae-sùk-khà-phâap-dûuai / rák-sǎa-sùk-khà-phâap-dûuai
English translation: “Take good care of your health.”

Explanation:  
Thai people use these two phrases with people they care about. There’s no difference between these two phrases, and they’re completely interchangeable.

Example 1:  
ตอนนี้ไข้หวัดกำลังระบาด คุณตาดูแลสุขภาพด้วยนะคะ สวัสดีค่ะ
dtaawn-níi-khâi-whàt-gam-lang-rá-bàat khun-dtaa-duu-laae-sùk-khà-phâap-dûuai-ná-khá sà-wàt-dii- khà
“This is the flu season, so you have to take good care of your health. Goodbye.” [Talking to your grandfather]

Example 2:  
หน้าฝนแล้ว รักษาสุขภาพด้วย สวัสดีค่ะ
nâa-fǒn-láaeo rák-sǎa-sùk-khà-phâap-dûuai sà-wàt-dii-khà
“It is the rainy season now, so take care of your health. Goodbye.”

11 – โชคดีนะ

Thai pronunciation: chôok-dii-ná
English translation: “Good luck.”

Explanation:  
This is another phrase to show you care.

Example:  
ขอให้โชคดีในการสอบนะ บ๊าย บาย
khǎaw-hâi-chôok-dii-nai-gaan-sàawp-ná báai-baai
Good luck on your test. Bye.”

12 – หายเร็ว ๆ นะ

Thai pronunciation: hǎai-reo-reo-ná
English translation: “Get well soon.”

Explanation:  
Thai people usually say this phrase after visiting someone they know in the hospital.

Example:  
ขอให้คุณน้าหายเร็ว ๆ นะคะ หนูขอตัวก่อน สวัสดีค่ะ
khǎaw-hâi-khun-náa-hǎai-reo-reo-ná-khá nǔu-khǎaw-dtuua-gàawn sà-wat-dii-khà
“I hope you get well soon. I have to go now. Goodbye.”

4. Actions Thai People Do When Saying Goodbye

There are a few specific actions Thai people do when saying goodbye to someone. Here are the most popular ones:

1 – ไหว้ (wâi)

As mentioned earlier, a common action that Thai people normally do when saying goodbye is ไหว้ (wâi). This action can be done when saying hello or goodbye in a formal environment. If you’re going to live in Thailand, it’s good to learn how to ไหว้ (wâi), as you’ll want to use it pretty often.

Two Women Smiling Each Other

สวัสดี [sà-wàt-dii]

2 – Hug

Thai people who are close to each other may also hug before saying goodbye.

3 – Wave

In informal situations, such as among friends, Thai people also wave while saying บ๊าย บาย (báai-baai).

A Group of Friends Waving Goodbye

See you tomorrow.

5. Conclusion

Now you know how to say goodbye in Thai! After reading this article, you should never be at a loss for words when it’s time to part ways. 

How do you say goodbye in your country? Is there much difference? Let us know in the comments below.

And as usual, if you’re not sure where to go next on ThaiPod101.com, we have some suggestions: 

We hope you enjoyed this lesson. สวัสดี (sà-wat-dii)!

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Is Thai Difficult to Learn? (And Tips to Succeed!)

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If you’re interested in learning the Thai language but haven’t started yet, you may be wondering: “Is Thai difficult to learn?” We’re here to tell you that learning Thai may not be as hard as you think it is!  

There are certain things that make the Thai language hard to learn, and for these, you’ll need to spend some time studying and practicing. But there are also many other aspects that are pretty simple and straightforward! You may feel a little doubtful about this, as the Thai alphabet, grammar, pronunciation, and so on, are new to you. But you’ll get familiar with these things in no time once you start learning with ThaiPod101.com.  

There are many foreigners who can speak and understand Thai so well, after just a few years, that even native speakers are surprised. So with some time, practice, and the right tools, anyone can learn to speak Thai. Yes, that includes you!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Learning Thai Table of Contents
  1. The Hardest and Easiest Parts of Learning Thai
  2. I Want to Learn Thai. Where Should I Start?
  3. Advice for a New Thai Learner
  4. Why is ThaiPod101.com Great for Learning Thai?
  5. Conclusion

1. The Hardest and Easiest Parts of Learning Thai 

In the following sections, we’ll cover the easiest aspect of Thai first, and then the hardest! Let’s go. 

What Makes Thai Easy?

Many language-learners dread the grammar aspect of their studies, and for good reasons! As such, you’ve probably been wondering: “Is Thai grammar hard?” 

Good news: It’s not difficult at all! It’s probably the easiest part of learning Thai.  

This is because there are no tenses or conjugations in Thai, so there’s a lot less to understand and remember.  You don’t have to learn how to change verb forms or swap around the sentence structure from one situation to another. For example:

Present simple tense:  

ฉันกินอาหารไทย
chǎn-gin-aa-hǎan-thai
“I eat Thai food.”

Present continuous tense

ฉันกำลังกินอาหารไทย
chǎn-gam-lang-gin-aa-hǎan-thai
“I am having Thai food.”

Adding กำลัง (gam-lang), which is like “ing” in English, shows that you’re in the process of doing the action.

Past simple tense:  

เมื่อวานฉันกินอาหารไทย
mûuea-waan-chǎn-gin-aa-hǎan-thai
“Yesterday, I had Thai food.”

Adding เมื่อวาน (mûuea-waan), which means “yesterday” in Thai,  shows that the action happened in the past.

Yesterday, I had Thai Food.

Future simple tense:  

วันพรุ่งนี้ฉันจะกินอาหารไทย
wan-phrûng-níi-chǎn-jà-gin-aa-hǎan-thai
“Tomorrow, I will have Thai food.”

Adding วันพรุ่งนี้ (wan-phrûng-níi), which means “tomorrow” in Thai, shows that this is a plan for the future. Adding จะ () shows that you will do it.

You can see that there’s not much difference between the four sentences above. That just goes to show how difficult it is to learn Thai language grammar. (Not at all, right? ^^)

Why is Thai Hard to Learn?

The hardest part of learning Thai is the การออกเสียง (gaan-àawk-sǐiang), or “pronunciation.” 

The biggest problem here is the เสียงวรรณยุกต์ (sǐiang-wan-ná-yúk), or “tones.” There are five tones in the Thai language, and foreigners often have difficulty distinguishing between them, thinking they all sound the same. For example:

  • ป้าดูปลาในป่า 
  • phâa-duu-phlaa-nai-phàa
  • “Aunt looks at fish in the forest.”
  • For foreigners who have just started learning Thai, it can be hard to differentiate between the words ป้า (phâa), ปลา (phla), and ป่า (phàa).

So, is it hard to learn to speak Thai? It certainly can be, but it’s still very achievable! 

Learning how to pronounce the Thai alphabet and tones correctly will help a lot, as it will create a strong foundation for your future studies. And by listening to plenty of Thai content, you’ll become more familiar with Thai pronunciation, making this portion of your studies a bit simpler.

2. I Want to Learn Thai. Where Should I Start?

When you start learning Thai, you should start with the most basic units, which are the พยัญชนะ (phá-yan-chá-ná) or “consonants,” and สระ (sà-rà) or “vowels.” Learning how to pronounce and write the Thai alphabet will enable you to read and write Thai with little problem, and make your conversations a lot smoother.

If you’ve been studying and practicing with the Thai alphabet for a while, and still struggle with reading, writing, or pronunciation, you may need to practice some more. Mastering the Thai alphabet right from the start will make the rest of your language-learning journey so much easier.

Learning the Thai Alphabet

At the same time, you should also start practicing basic conversational phrases and learn easy Thai words.  Learning new words along with the conversational phrases will make the words easier to remember. Not to mention how useful basic phrases can be in daily life! 

3. Advice for a New Thai Learner   

Learning a new language is not an easy thing to do. Here are a few tips for you.

1 – Listen to lots of Thai content

Whether it’s a Thai song, TV series, news station, or drama film, listen to your target language as much as possible. Even if you don’t understand anything you’re hearing, you’ll start to become more familiar with Thai pronunciation and tones. And it’s even better with subtitles! This will allow you to more easily learn vocabulary and sentence structures while enjoying yourself!

I Watch Thai Movies Everyday.

2 – Find something you like about Thai

Learning any language takes time, and this is especially true for a language very different from your own, like Thai. You can’t master Thai in just a few days!  

That said, it’s easier to do something for a long time if that thing interests you. You should find something you like about Thai so that you can develop a passion for learning the language. 

For example, if you like a certain Thai actor, you’ll enjoy watching that actor in a movie or TV drama—and you’ll be able to learn Thai at the same time! You’ll also want to understand what he said in an interview or behind the scenes, which will motivate you to learn the language.  

It doesn’t have to be a person, though. There are many other Thai-related topics that may interest you: TV shows, culture, food, desserts, or even ghost stories. You just need to look for it, because we guarantee you’ll find something!

3 – Be patient

Rome wasn’t built in a day.

As mentioned earlier, you can’t master any new language in only a few days, so you have to be patient when learning Thai.  

You may find it a bit tough and not very enjoyable at first because everything is new and there’s a lot to take in. There are a lot of letters to remember, several pronunciation rules you need to memorize, and the tones are driving you crazy. But that’s just because you’re not familiar with the Thai language yet. As you start to understand Thai, you’ll feel very satisfied with yourself and your language skills. 

There’s a saying in Thai: ความพยายามอยู่ที่ไหน ความสำเร็จอยู่ที่นั้น (khwaam-phá-yaa-yaam- yùu-thîi-nǎi khwaam-sǎm-rèt-yùu-thîi-nân). It means that if you keep trying, you’ll be successful. In other words: “Where there’s a will, there’s a way.” So next time you feel like giving up, just remember these words.

4 – Choose the right learning tools

Have you ever seen chefs in five-star restaurants using dull knives? No, they use high-quality knives and keep them sharp. Their cooking may not depend on the knife they use, but having a good sharp one will make the job a lot easier! 

The same is true for learning Thai. If you’ve been learning Thai for a while, and still find it very difficult, you may be using the wrong tool. 

Good books used to be enough, but nowadays, everything you need to learn Thai is at your fingertips when you use ThaiPod101.com. ThaiPod101.com is like a knowledgeable teacher, a friend who gets you interested in Thai culture, and an encouraging mentor all wrapped up into one person. So don’t hesitate to visit and learn more about us! 

4. Why is ThaiPod101.com Great for Learning Thai?

ThaiPod101.com is a fast, fun, and easy way to learn Thai. Below, we’ll give you just a few reasons to give us a try: 

1 – A variety of lessons and materials

We provide various Thai lessons for learners at every level. For example, our page on the Easy Way to Learn the Thai Alphabet for beginners, and our Thai Language Exam article for more advanced students.

We also have audio lessons so that you can hear how Thai people speak, improve your listening skills, and practice your pronunciation. And don’t forget our handy vocabulary lists, categorized by topic. Examples include Talking About YouTube and Useful Words and Phrases for Going to the Movies. You’ll also find a grammar bank on our website (which contains almost 400 grammar topics you can learn) and printable PDF lesson notes for you to review after lessons.  

And by upgrading to a Premium PLUS account, you’ll be able to communicate one-on-one with your own personal teacher. Your teacher will be more than happy to help with your Thai learning and provide you with the tools and encouragement you need to succeed.  

With these abundant materials, ThaiPod101.com is the best and easiest way to learn Thai! 

2 – Learn Thai 24/7

You don’t need to meet your teacher face-to-face to learn Thai. With internet access and a mobile phone, tablet, or PC, you can access all of our Thai lessons through ThaiPod101.com—anytime, wherever you are.

I Can Learn Thai 24/7

3 – Flexible learning plans for individuals

ThaiPod101.com provides the most flexible Thai class you can join. If you don’t know where to start, we can provide you with guidance and suggestions, tailored to your current level and your goals. But you can also plan your lessons based on your interests, strengths, and weaknesses. In addition,  you can always repeat a lesson if you forgot something or didn’t quite understand the topic. Learn at your own pace, your way! 

4 – Pronunciation practice

Learning Thai pronunciation is the hardest part of learning the language. As such, you may be concerned that learning Thai online will take away from your ability to practice pronunciation. Don’t worry! ThaiPod101.com has a pronunciation and accent review function for you to practice with. You can keep practicing until you get it right.

5 – Assignments, quizzes, and tests

Don’t leave yet! Even though assignments, quizzes, and tests are typically boring and unwelcome, you can’t deny that completing assignments and quizzes improves our understanding and shows us where we need to do better. And don’t worry: there’s not much pressure when completing them, like there would be in a traditional classroom.

6 – Daily learning encouragement

If you’re a student, we know that you probably have tons of homework to do, tests to prepare for, and recreational activities to attend to stay sane. If you’re a full-time worker, finding time to learn a new language can be an issue when there are work responsibilities and other things you need to do. We understand and will encourage you to learn Thai little by little with us. There are even short lessons you can complete daily—we’ll even remind you to do them. 😉

7 – Cultural knowledge

ThaiPod101.com also provides information about Thai culture: how Thai people live, act, and think in daily life.  These lessons are interesting for both Thai learners and foreigners who are living in Thailand. 

Learn More about Thai Culture.

5. Conclusion

At this point, we hope that if someone asks you whether the Thai language is easy or hard, you’ll let them know it’s not that bad. 

It will take some time, but anyone can learn Thai. 

The best way to get started is to visit ThaiPod101.com and explore our many lessons and learning tools. We recommend starting with our Thai Alphabet Made Easy lessons.

Before you go, let us know in the comments if you feel ready to start learning Thai! If not, we’d love to hear your questions or concerns as well. 

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The Top 10 Common Thai Mistakes for Learners to Avoid

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In Thai, there’s a saying, ผิดเป็นครู (phìt-bpen-khruu), which means “learning from your mistakes.”  

Still, making mistakes can sometimes be embarrassing, so it’s better if you can avoid them in the first place.  Hence, this comprehensive guide on typical Thai language mistakes from ThaiPod101.com.

You’ll learn about mistakes in Thai grammar, vocabulary, word choice, and the appropriate use of Thai phrases. By the end of this article, you should be able to decrease the number of common Thai-English mistakes you make, or avoid them altogether!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Thai Table of Contents
  1. Similar Consonants
  2. Short and Long Vowel Sounds
  3. A Note on Tone Marks
  4. The Correct Tone for คะ (khá) and ค่ะ (khâ)
  5. False Friends
  6. ตัวผู้ (dtuua-phûu) is for Male Animals
  7. Word Order: Nouns and Adjectives
  8. Politeness Level
  9. Special Words for Monks
  10. Being Too Afraid to Speak
  11. Conclusion

1. Similar Consonants

A frequent mistake in Thai language-learning is that of confusing similar-sounding consonants. In Thai, there are many consonants that have similar sounds, and pronouncing them incorrectly can completely change the meaning of a word. Below are some examples.

1 – ข (kh) and ค (kh)

Despite having the same romanization, these two consonants have different sounds. ข (kh) sounds deeper than ค (kh), and if you use the wrong sound, this could happen:

Thai sentence: เนื้อปลาขาว ๆ น่ากินมาก
Thai pronunciation: núuea-bplaa-khǎao-khǎao-nâa-gin-mâak

Correct pronunciation meaning: “The white fish looks yummy.”
Incorrect pronunciation meaning: “The fishy fish looks yummy.”

Explanation:  

  • ขาว (khǎao) means “white” in Thai.
  • คาว (khaao) means “fishy” in Thai.

You can see that common pronunciation mistakes for Thai-learners like this one can be quite funny. 

We recommend that you listen to Thai people speaking often, so that you can learn how to pronounce these consonants correctly.

White Fish Sushi

The white fish looks yummy.

2 – ช (ch) and ฉ (ch)

Another pair of similar-sounding consonants is ช (ch) and ฉ (ch). 

Thai sentence: ฉิ่งเป็นเครื่องดนตรีไทย
Thai pronunciation: chìng-bpen-khrûueang-don-dtrii-thai

Correct pronunciation meaning: “The cymbal is a Thai musical instrument.”
Incorrect pronunciation meaning: “Running away is a Thai musical instrument.”

Explanation:  

Here’s another tip for avoiding typical Thai mistakes like this one: If there’s romanization, pay attention to the tone of the word. You may notice that, despite both words having the same tone mark, the tones are not the same.

3 – ถ (th) and ท (th)

The last pair of consonants is ถ (th) and ท (th). Here’s what a mistake in Thai might look like if you confuse them:

Thai sentence: คนให้ทั่ว ๆ นะ
Thai pronunciation: khon-hâi-thûua-thûua-ná

Correct pronunciation meaning: “Stir it thoroughly.”
Incorrect pronunciation meaning: “Stir it nut.”

Explanation:  

  • ทั่ว (thûua) means “thoroughly” in Thai.
  • ถั่ว (thùua) means “nut” in Thai.

Hopefully the examples and tips above will help you avoid these common mistakes English-speakers make in Thai!

2. Short and Long Vowel Sounds

Another common pronunciation mistake is to pronounce Thai vowels too short or too long. As there are many pairs of short and long vowels in Thai, it’s important that you pay close attention here. Pronouncing a word too short or too long can change its meaning.

1 – ุ (u) and ู (tuu)

Pronouncing ุ (u) and ู (tuu) incorrectly can lead to this weird situation:

Thai sentence: ดูเด็กคนนั้นสิ น่ารักจัง
Thai pronunciation: duu-dèk-khon-nán-sì nâa-rák-jang

Correct pronunciation meaning: “Look at that child, so cute.”
Incorrect pronunciation meaning: “Scold that child, so cute.”

Explanation:  

  • ดู (duu) means “look” in Thai.
  • ดุ () means “scold” in Thai.
Little Kid Counting on His Fingers

2 – ิ (i) and ี (ii)

ิ (i) and ี (ii) are another vowel sound pair that English-speakers often get confused by. See what happens if you use the wrong sound: 

Thai sentence: เขาเป็นช่างตีเหล็ก
Thai pronunciation: khǎo-bpen-châang-dtii-lèk

Correct pronunciation meaning: “He is a blacksmith.”
Incorrect pronunciation meaning: “He is a person who criticizes iron.”

Explanation:  

  • ตี (dtii) means “hit” in Thai.
  • ติ (dtì) means “criticize” in Thai.

3 – ะ (a) and า (aa)

The last example we’ll cover here is the pronunciation of ะ (a) and า (aa).

Thai sentence: วันนี้วันจันทร์
Thai pronunciation: wan-níi-wan-jan

Correct pronunciation meaning: “Today is Monday.”
Incorrect pronunciation meaning: “Today is Dish day.”

Explanation:  

  • จันทร์ (jan) means “moon,” or if it’s after วัน (wan), it means “Monday” in Thai.
  • จาน (jaan) means “dish” in Thai.

3. A Note on Tone Marks

Despite having the same name, you can’t use tone marks to define the tone of words. This is a common mistake in spoken Thai. There are many factors, other than tone marks, that affect the tone of a word. For example, initial consonants and vowel sounds. 

Example 1: ขา (khǎa), which means “leg” in Thai, has a rising tone despite having no tone mark.

Example 2: ซ้ำ (sám), which means “repeat,” in Thai, has a high tone despite having a falling tone mark.

Example 3: ฆ่า (khâa), which means “kill” in Thai, has a falling tone despite having a low tone mark.

4. The Correct Tone for คะ (khá) and ค่ะ (khâ)

In Thai, to be polite, females add คะ (khá) and ค่ะ (khà) to the end of sentences. However, many people use these incorrectly. This is the most common mistake in Thai, for both native Thai people and foreigners. Below are examples of how to use คะ (khá) and ค่ะ (khà) correctly.

1 – คะ (khá)

คะ (khá) is used in two conditions: 

  • After questions
  • After sentences that end with นะ ()

Example 1:  

กระดาษอยู่ที่ไหนคะ
grà-dàat-yùu-thîi-nǎi-khá
“Where is the paper?”

Example 2:  

อย่าทำแบบนี้อีกนะคะ
yàa-tham-bàaep-níi-ìik-ná-khá
“Don’t do this again.”

2 – ค่ะ (khâ)

ค่ะ (khâ) is used after affirmative and negative sentences.

Example 1:  

ฉันไม่กินเผ็ดค่ะ
chǎn-mâi-gin-phèt-khâ
I don’t eat spicy food.

Example 2:  

ฉันจะไปทะเลตอนสงกรานต์ค่ะ
chǎn-jà-bpai-thá-lee-dtaawn-sǒng-graan-khâ
“I will go to the sea during Songkran.”

Someone Swimming in the Sea with Scuba Diving Gear

5. False Friends

For those who can speak English, don’t be so happy to see or hear English words in Thai. The meanings may be very different! 

1 – Fit 

ฟิต (fít) is “too tight” in Thai, while in English, it means “not too tight or too loose.” 

  • กางเกงตัวนี้ใส่แล้วฟิตมาก 
    gaang-geeng-dtuua-níi-sài-láaeo-fít-mâak
    “These pants are too tight for me.”

2 – Over  

โอเวอร์ (oo-vôoe) is “exaggerate” in Thai, while in English, it means “end.” 

  • เรื่องที่เธอเล่ามันโอเวอร์มาก
    rûueang-thîi-thooe-lâo-man-oo-vôoe-mâak
    “The story you told is exaggerated.”

6. ตัวผู้ (dtuua-phûu) is for Male Animals

Another Thai word mistake you should know has to do with ตัวผู้ (dtuua-phûu). This word is used for male animals in Thai

When you start learning the language, you may learn that เมีย (miia) is “wife” in informal Thai and ผัว (phǔua) is “husband.” However, when it comes to animals, Thai people put ตัวเมีย (dtuua-miia) after the animal’s name to specify that the animal is female. You may see this, and think that you should use ตัวผัว (dtuua-phǔua) to specify that the animal is male, but this is incorrect! Instead, you should put ตัวผู้ (dtuua-phûu).

Example:  

  • สิงโตตัวผู้ (sǐng-dtoo-dtuua-phûu) is “male lion” in Thai.
  • สิงโตตัวเมีย (sǐng-dtoo-dtuua-miia) is “female lion” in Thai.
A Lion Roaring

7. Word Order: Nouns and Adjectives

Now, let’s talk about common Thai grammar mistakes that foreigners often make. 

In English, adjectives are put in front of nouns; in Thai, it’s the other way around.  

Example 1:  

ดอกไม้สีขาวมีกลิ่นหอม
dâawk-mái-sǐi-khǎao-mii-glìn-hǎawm
“The white flowers smell nice.”

A Bunch of Small White Flowers

Example 2:  

แม่ชอบผลไม้เปรี้ยว ๆ มากกว่าผลไม้หวาน ๆ
mâae-châawp-phǒn-lá-mái-bprîiao-bprîiao-mâak-gwàa-phǒn-lá-mái-wǎan-wǎan
“Mom likes sour fruit more than sweet fruit.”

8. Politeness Level

Politeness level is the source of many common Thai-English mistakes. In Thai, there are many words that mean the same thing but have different levels of politeness, which you may know already if you’ve studied Thai pronouns. Thus, it’s important to use the right words in the right situations. Using the wrong words can be both inappropriate and funny.

Example 1:  

คุณครูกินข้าวเที่ยงรึยังคะ
khun-khruu-gin-khâao-thîiang-rúe-yang-khá
“Have you had lunch yet?” (Talking to a teacher)

Explanation:  

The situation here is that a student is talking to a teacher. Thus, the student should ask the teacher this question in a polite manner. The student has already put คะ (khá) after the question, which is good. However, instead of using กิน (gin), it would have been better to use รับประทาน (ráp-bprà-thaan). And instead of using ข้าวเที่ยง (khâao-thîiang), the student should have used อาหารกลางวัน (aa-hǎan-glaang-wan).

Appropriate Thai sentence:  

คุณครูรับประทานอาหารกลางวันรึยังคะ
khun-khruu-thaan-aa-hǎan-glaang-wan-rúe-yang-khá
“Have you had lunch yet?” (Talking to a teacher)

Example 2:  

เธอมีบุตรกี่คน
thooe-mii-bùt-gìi-khon
“How many sons and daughters do you have?”

Explanation:  

Here, two friends are having a conversation. The speaker must be close to the other party, as there’s no ครับ (khráp) or คะ (khá) at the end of the sentence. In this case, using บุตร (bùt), which means “son” or “daughter,” is too polite. Instead, the speaker should have used ลูก (lûuk), which has the same meaning but sounds better.

Appropriate Thai sentence:  

เธอมีลูกกี่คน
thooe-mii-lûuk-gìi-khon
“How many sons and daughters do you have?”

9. Special Words for Monks

In Thai language, we have special words for monks which include pronouns and verbs. This is a part of คำราชาศัพท์ (kham-raa-chaa-sàp). Don’t be confused if you hear some words you are not familiar with when the topic involves monks in Thai.  Also, it is a good idea to learn basic words related to monks so that you won’t make common Thai mistakes.

Example 1:  

พระกำลังสวดมนต์อยู่
phrá-gam-lang-sùuat-mon-yùu
“The monks are praying.”

The Monks Are Praying

Explanation:  

สวดมนต์ (sùuat-mon) is “pray” in Thai, but it should be used with normal people. For monks, instead of using สวดมนต์ (sùuat-mon), Thai people use ทำวัตร (tham-wát).

Appropriate Thai sentence:  

พระกำลังทำวัตรอยู่
phrá-gam-lang-tham-wát-yùu
“The monks are praying.”

Example 2:  

พระไม่กินอาหารเย็น
phrá-mâi-gin-aa-hǎan-yen
“The monk didn’t have dinner.”

Explanation:  

กิน (gin) is “eat” in Thai, but it should be used with normal people. For monks, instead of using กิน (gin), Thai people use ฉัน (chǎn).

Appropriate Thai sentence:  

พระไม่ฉันอาหารเย็น
phrá-mâi-chǎn-aa-hǎan-yen
“The monk didn’t have dinner.”

10. Being Too Afraid to Speak

The biggest mistake in learning Thai is being too afraid to speak with natives. 

Don’t be afraid to speak, even if Thai people don’t seem to understand what you’re saying. Thai pronunciation is hard and Thai people know this. Actually, most Thai people find it cute when they hear foreigners trying to speak Thai, and they’ll try their best to understand. 

11. Conclusion

After finishing this lesson, we hope you can avoid making these common Thai mistakes. Have you ever made one of these Thai mistakes before? What did you feel? Let us know in the comments! 

Do you already know what you’re going to study next in your Thai learning? If you’re not sure, here are some suggestions:

Or you can visit ThaiPod101.com and choose another lesson that interests you.

Happy Thai learning!

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Basic Thai Questions and Answers You Should Know

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As a new Thai language-learner, do you find it hard to make conversation with native speakers? Because speaking Thai as often as possible is a great way to acquire the language, knowing the most common questions and answers in Thai conversations will be very helpful for you.  

Having a Thai Conversation

In this lesson, you’ll learn about asking questions in Thai and how you can answer them yourself. Knowing these common Thai questions and answers will give you the confidence you need to practice speaking more often! 

However, before we start our list of the top ten questions in Thai, there are a few things you need to know first.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Thai Table of Contents
  1. An Overview of Asking Questions in Thai
  2. Our Thai Questions and Answers List
  3. Conclusion

1. An Overview of Asking Questions in Thai

First things first! We’ll answer some common Thai grammar questions that learners have, and introduce you to the basic vocabulary you should know.   

1 – Thai Question Marks 

When going over the topic of Thai questions, many learners wonder “Are there question marks in Thai?” The answer is yes, there are question marks in the Thai language.  

In Thai, question marks are called ปรัศนี (bpràt-sà-nii) and เครื่องหมายคำถาม (khrùueng-mǎai-kham-thǎam). In normal conversations, people usually use เครื่องหมายคำถาม (khrùueng-mǎai-kham-thǎam). ปรัศนี (bpràt-sà-nii) is rarely used in daily conversation; it’s only used in academic contexts.  

That said, there’s no rule about asking questions in Thai grammar that requires you to put a question mark after your question. Thai people really only put question marks after a question to show that they’re really in doubt and want to know the answer.

2 – Pronouns Used in Thai Questions and Answers

When you ask or answer questions in Thai, you can use both names and pronouns, so you’ll find it easier if you know some Thai pronouns. Below are some examples of pronouns often used in Thai questions and answers.

Thai pronouns for you:

  • คุณ (khun) is used in formal or business situations. It can be used with both males and females.
  • นาย (naai) is used in casual situations. It can be used with males only.
  • เธอ (thooe) is used in casual situations. It can be used with females only.

Thai pronouns for I:

  • ฉัน (chǎn) is used when the speaker is female.
  • ผม (phǒm) is used when the speaker is male.

You’ll find throughout this lesson that Thai people often omit the subject from the sentence, so don’t be surprised if you don’t hear any name or pronoun when speaking with natives.

3 – Making Questions and Answers Formal

To make a sentence formal in Thai, put the word ครับ (khráp) or ค่ะ (khâ) at the end of a sentence when speaking. ครับ (khráp) is used when the speaker is male, while ค่ะ (khâ) is used when the speaker is female. 

Keep in mind that there’s a special rule when it comes to questions: for females, instead of using ค่ะ (khâ), you put คะ (khá) after questions.

Now, let’s start learning ten common Thai phrases and questions.

2. Our Thai Questions and Answers List

First Encounter

1. What’s your name? 

The first question you should learn is how to ask for someone’s name. This is an easy question to ask in Thai, and it’s a great way to start a conversation with someone you don’t know.

1 – Thai question

Question pattern:
pronoun for “you” / noun + ชื่ออะไร
pronoun for “you” / noun + chûue-à-rai
“What is your name?”

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1:
pronoun for “I” + ชื่อ + ___
pronoun for “I” + chûue + ___
“My name is ___.”

Answer pattern 2:
ชื่อ + ___
chûue + ___
“My name is ___.”

Answer pattern 3:
Just say your name.

Additional Note:  
Patterns 2 and 3 are short versions of pattern 1, which is the full answer. Of the three patterns, pattern 1 is the most formal, followed by pattern 2, with pattern 3 being the most casual.

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
ลูกค้าชื่ออะไรคะ
lûuk-khaa-chûue-à-rai-khá
“What is the customer’s name?” (You are talking to the customer.)

Thai answer:  
ผมชื่อป้องศักดิ์ครับ
phǒm-chûue-bpâawng-sàk-khráp
“My name is Pongsak.”

Example 2

Thai question:  
เธอชื่ออะไร
thooe-chûue-à-rai
“What is your name?”

Thai answer:  
กิ๊ฟ
gíp
“Gip.”

2. Where are you from? 

To learn more about someone, one of the best Thai language questions to ask is “Where are you from?” There are a few ways to ask this question, shown below.

1 – Thai questions

Question pattern 1:  
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + มาจากที่ไหน
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + maa-jàak-thîi-nǎi
“Where are you from?”

Question pattern 2:  
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + เป็นคนจังหวัดอะไร
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + bpen-khon-jang-wàt-à-rai
“Which province are you from?”

Question pattern 3:  
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + เป็นคนประเทศอะไร
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + bpen-khon-bprà-thêet-à-rai
“Which country are you from?”

Additional Note:  
When Thai people are asked where they come from, they often answer with the name of the province they grew up in. Thus, you can use pattern 2 specifically with a Thai person. Pattern 3, as you can guess, is used with foreigners.

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1:  
pronoun for “I” + มาจาก + ___
pronoun for “I” + maa-jàak + ___
“I come from ___.”

Answer pattern 2
มาจาก + ___
maa-jàak + ___
“I come from ___.”

Answer pattern 3:  
Just say the name of your hometown or country.

Additional Note:  
Patterns 1 through 3 can be used to answer all of the questions above. Patterns 2 and 3 are the short versions of pattern 1, which is the full answer. Pattern 1 is the most formal, followed by pattern 2, with pattern 3 being the most casual.

Answer pattern 4:  
pronoun for “I” + เป็นคน + name of province or country
pronoun for “I” + bpen-khon + ___
“I come from ___.”

Answer pattern 5:  
คน + name of province or country
khon + ___
“I am ___.”

Additional Note:  
Patterns 4 and 5 are used to answer question patterns 2 and 3 only. As you can see, pattern 5 is the short version of pattern 4.

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
เดวิดมาจากที่ไหน
dee-vìt-maa-jàak-thîi-nǎi
“Where are you from?” (You are talking to David.)

Thai answer:  
มาจากออสเตเรียครับ
maa-jàak-áawt-dtee-riia
“I come from Australia.”

Example 2

Thai question:  
นักเรียนเป็นคนจังหวัดอะไร
nák-riian-bpen-khon-jang-wàt-à-rai
“Which province are you from?” (You are talking to a student.)

Thai answer:  
คนลพบุรีค่ะ
khon lóp-bù-rii khà
“I come from Lopburi.”

3. Do you speak ___? 

This is one of the best Thai questions for foreigners. Knowing the language skills of other parties makes it easier to communicate, in case you can speak the same language. ^^

1 – Thai question

Question pattern:  
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + พูดภาษา___ได้มั้ย
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + phûut-phaa-sǎa-___-dâi-mái
“Do you speak ___?”

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1:  
ได้
dâi
“Yes.”

Answer pattern 2:  
ได้นิดหน่อย
dâi-nit-nàauy
“Yes, a little bit.”

Answer pattern 3:  
ไม่ได้
mâi-dâi
“No.”

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
ลดาพูดภาษาจีนได้มั้ย
lá-daa-phûut-phaa-sǎa-jiin-dâi-mái
“Does Lada speak Chinese?”

Thai answer:  
ได้นิดหน่อย
dâi-nit-nàauy
“Yes, a little bit.”

Example 2

Thai question:  
น้ำตาลพูดภาษาอังกฤษได้มั้ย
nám-dtaan-phûut-phaa-sǎa-ang-grìt-dâi-mái
Does Namtarn speak English?

Thai answer:  
ได้ หนูเคยไปเรียนที่อเมริกา 3 ปี
dai nǔu-khooei-bpai-riian-thii-a-mee-ri-gaa-saam-bpii
“Yes, I do. I have studied in the United States for three years.”

4. How long have you been studying ___? 

To continue the conversation, you can ask this question in Thai.

1 – Thai questions

Question pattern 1:  
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + เรียนภาษา___มานานเท่าไหร่แล้ว
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + riian-phaa-sǎa-___-maa-naan-thâo-rài-láaeo
“How long have you been studying ___?”

Question pattern 2:  
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + เรียนภาษา___มากี่ปีแล้ว
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + riian-phaa-sǎa-___-maa-gìi-bpii-láaeo
“How many years have you been studying ___?”

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1:  
pronoun for “I” + เรียนมา ___ ปี / เดือน
pronoun for “I” + riian-maa-___-bpii / duuean
“I have studied for ___ years / months.”

Answer pattern 2:  
เรียนมา ___ ปี / เดือน
riian-maa-___-bpii / duuean
“I have studied for ___ years / months.”

Answer pattern 3:  
pronoun for “I” + เรียนมาตั้งแต่อายุ ___ ปีแล้ว
pronoun for “I” + riian-maa-dtâng-dtàae-aa-yú-___-bpii-lâaeo
“I have studied since I was ___ years old.”

Answer pattern 4:  
เรียนมาตั้งแต่อายุ ___ ขวบ / ปีแล้ว
Riian-maa-dtâng-dtàae-aa-yú-___-khùuap / bpii-lâaeo
“I have studied since I was ___ years old.”

Pattern 2 is the short version of pattern 1, and pattern 4 is the short version of pattern 3. The subject of the sentence is omitted as Thai people assume you already know who you’re talking about.

ขวบ (khùuap) and ปี (bpii) are both numeric classifiers of age. ขวบ (khùuap) is used for ages under thirteen years old, while ปี (bpii) is used for ages thirteen years old and above.

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
มิกิเรียนภาษาไทยมานานกี่ปีแล้วคะ
mí-gì-riian-phaa-sǎa-thai-maa-naan-gìi-bpii-láaeo-khá
How many years has Miki studied the Thai language?” (You are talking to Miki.)

Thai answer:  
เรียนมา 2 ปีแล้ว
riian-maa-sǎawng-bpii-láaeo-khà
“I have studied Thai for two years now.”

Example 2

Thai question:  
คุณเรียนภาษาอังกฤษมานานเท่าไหร่แล้วครับ
khun-riian-phaa-sǎa-ang-grìt-maa-naan-thâo-rài-láaeo-khráp
“How long have you studied English?”

Thai answer:  
ฉันเรียนภาษาอังกฤษมาตั้งแต่อายุ 3 ขวบค่ะ
chǎn-riian-phaa-sǎa-ang-grìt-maa-dtâng-dtàae-aa-yú-sǎam-khûuap-khà
“I have studied English since I was three years old.”

5. Have you been to ___? 

This is another conversational Thai question you should know, and you’re likely to hear it from travel enthusiasts! 

1 – Thai question

Question pattern:  
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + เคยไปประเทศ___มั้ย
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + khooei-bpai-bprà-thêet-___-mái
“Have you been to ___?”

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1
เคย
khooei
“Yes, I have.”

Answer pattern 2:  
ไม่เคย
mâi-khooei
“No, I haven’t.”

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
คุณป้าเคยไปประเทศญี่ปุ่นมั้ยคะ
khun-bpâa-khooei-bpai-bprà-thêet-yîi-bpùn-mái-khá
“Have you been to Japan?” (You are talking to your aunt.)

Thai answer:  
เคยจ๊ะ ปีที่แล้วป้าไปเที่ยวที่โตเกียวมา
khooei-já pbii-thîi-láaeo-bpâa-bpai-thîiao-thîi-dtoo-giiao-maa
“Yes, I have. I traveled to Tokyo last year.”

Example 2

Thai question:  
เธอเคยไปอยุธยามั้ย
thooe-khooei-bpai-à-yút-thá-yaa-mái
Have you been to Ayutthaya?

Thai answer:  
ไม่เคย แต่อยากไปมากนะ
mâi-khooei dtàae-yàak-bpai-mâak-ná
“No, I haven’t. But I really want to go there.”

Introducing Yourself

6. What do you do for work? 

If you’re asking questions in Thai to get to know more about someone, asking about their occupation is a must.  Good news: This conversational question in Thai is very easy.

1 – Thai question

Question pattern:  
pronoun for “you” / name + ทำอาชีพอะไร
pronoun for “you” / name + tham-aa-chîip-à-rai
What do you do for work?

2 – Thai answer

Answer pattern
pronoun for “I” + เป็น ___
pronoun for “I” + bpen ___
“I am a(n) ___.”

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
คุณธัญญ์ทำอาชีพอะไรคะ
khun-than-tham-aa-chîip-à-rai-khá
“What does Than do for work?” (You are talking to Than.)

Thai answer:  
ผมเป็นวิศวกรครับ
khun-than-tham-aa-chîip-à-rai-khá
“I am an engineer.”

I am an Engineer
Example 2

Thai question:  
นายทำอาชีพอะไร
naai-tham-aa-chîip-à-rai
“What do you do for work?”

Thai answer:  
ผมเป็นครู
phǒm-bpen-khruu
“I am a teacher.”

7. Do you like ___ food? 

Asking someone about their food preferences is a fantastic way to get to know someone, and to find common ground.  

1 – Thai question

Question pattern:  
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + ชอบอาหาร___มั้ย
pronoun for “you” / noun / name + châawp-aa-hǎan-___-mái
“Do you like ___ food?”

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1
ชอบ
châawp
“Yes, I do.”

Answer pattern 2:  
ไม่ชอบ
mâi-châawp
“No, I don’t.”

Answer pattern 3:  
เฉย ๆ
chǒoei-chǒoei
“Indifferent.”

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
คุณครูชอบอาหารอินเดียมั้ยคะ
khun-khruu-châawp-aa-hǎan-in-diia-mái-khá
“Do you like Indian food?” (You are talking to a teacher.)

Thai answer:  
ชอบครับ หอมกลิ่นเครื่องเทศดี
châawp-khráp hǎawm-glìn-khrûueng-thêet-dii
“Yes, I do. The spices smell nice.”

Example 2

Thai question:  
โคลอี้ชอบอาหารไทยมั้ย
khloo-îi-châawp-aa-hǎan-thai-mái
“Do you like Thai food?” (You are talking to Chole.)

Thai answer:  
เฉย ๆ เพราะฉันทานเผ็ดไม่ได้
chǒoei-chǒoei phráw-chǎn-thaan-phèt-mâi-dâi
“I’m indifferent because I can’t eat spicy food.”

8. What are you doing?

This question can be used to start a conversation with someone, and to show that you’re interested in their life. 

1 – Thai question

Question pattern:  
pronoun for “you” / noun + ทำอะไรอยู่
pronoun for “you” / noun + tham-à-rai-yùu
“What are you doing?”

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1
pronoun for “I” + กำลัง + verb + อยู่
pronoun for “I” + gam-lang + verb + yùu
“I am ___ now.”

Answer pattern 2
verb + อยู่
verb + yùu
“I am ___ now.”

Additional note:  
Pattern 2 is the short version of pattern 1. The subject of the sentence is omitted as Thai people assume you already know who you’re talking about.

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
นักเรียนทำอะไรอยู่คะ
nák-riian-tham-à-rai-yùu-kha
“What are you doing?” (You are talking to a student.)

Thai answer:  
หนูกำลังทำการบ้านอยู่ค่ะ
nǔu-gam-lang-tham-gaan-bâan-yùu-khà
“I am doing homework now.”

I am Doing Homework Now
Example 2

Thai question:  
แม่ทำอะไรอยู่
mâae-tham-à-rai-yùu
“Mom, what are you doing?”

Thai answer:  
อาบน้ำอยู่
àap-nám-yùu
I’m taking a shower.”

9. What is wrong? 

To ask someone what’s wrong, there are a few different questions in Thai that you can use. 

1 – Thai questions

Question pattern 1:  
เกิดอะไรขึ้น
gòoet-à-rai-khûen
“What’s happened? What’s wrong?”

The literal meaning of this pattern is “What’s happened?” You ask this when you sense that something bad has happened and you want to know what it is.

Question pattern 2:  
มีปัญหาอะไรรึเปล่า
mii-bpan-hǎa-à-rai-rúe-bplào
“Is there any problem?”

This is another way to ask “What’s wrong?” when you sense that something bad happened.

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1
Explain your problem or issues.

Answer pattern 2
ไม่มีอะไร
mâi-mii-à-rai
“Nothing wrong, no problem.”

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
เสียงดังอะไรกัน มีปัญหาอะไรรึเปล่า
sǐiang-dang-à-rai-gan mii-bpan-hǎa-à-rai-rúe-bplào
“What is that loud noise? Is there any problem?”

Thai answer:  
ไม่มีอะไร ของตกเฉย ๆ
mâi-mii-à-rai khǎawng-dtok-chǒoei-chǒoei
“No problem. Something just fell.”

Example 2

Thai question:  
เกิดอะไรขึ้น ทำไมเธอถึงร้องไห้
gòoet-à-rai-khûen tham-mai-thooe-thǔeng-ráawng-hâi
“What’s wrong? Why are you crying?

Thai answer:  
มีคนบอกว่าแฟนนอกใจฉัน
mii-khon-bàawk-wâa-faaen-nâawk-jai-chǎn
“Someone told me my boyfriend cheated on me.”

What’s Wrong? Why Are You Crying?

10. How much is ___? 

Asking for the price of products and services is an important conversational skill to have in any country. Here are the Thai questions and answers you can use! 

1 – Thai questions

Question pattern 1:  
noun / pronoun + ราคาเท่าไหร่
noun / pronoun + raa-khaa-thâo-rài
“How much is noun/pronoun?”

Question pattern 2:  
noun / pronoun + ราคากี่บาท
noun / pronoun + raa-khaa-gìi-bàat
“How much is noun/pronoun?”

Despite having the same meaning, pattern 1 is more formal than pattern 2.

2 – Thai answers

Answer pattern 1
noun / pronoun + ราคา ___ บาท
noun / pronoun + raa-khaa-___-bàat
“Noun / pronoun is ___ Baht.”

Answer pattern 2
___ บาท
___-bàat
“___ Baht.”

Pattern 2 is the short version of pattern 1.

3 – Examples

Example 1

Thai question:  
กะหล่ำปลีราคากี่บาท
gà-làm-bplii-raa-khaa-gìi-bàat
“How much is the cabbage?”

Thai answer:  
30 บาท
sǎam-sìp-bàat
“30 Baht.”

Example 2

Thai question:  
รถคันนี้ราคาเท่าไหร่ครับ
rót-khan-níi-raa-khaa-thâo-rài-khráp
“How much is this car?”

Thai answer:  
รถคันนั้นราคา 500,000 บาทค่ะ
rót-khan-nán-raa-khaa-hâa-sǎaen-bàat-khà
“That car costs 500,000 Baht.”

11. Conclusion

You’ve just finished learning the basics about how to ask questions in Thai. If you can remember all of these common questions and answers, you have all you need to practice your Thai speaking and listening skills through conversations with Thai people. We hope this article has been very helpful for you! 

Now that you’ve finished this lesson, you may be curious about related topics such as question words in Thai,  which you can learn on ThaiPod101.com as well. Of course, there are other interesting lessons for you to study, such as Thai Girl’s Dream Job and Thai Jokes. Don’t forget to visit ThaiPod101.com and check out new lessons as they become available. 

Before you go, practice writing some of these Thai questions and answers in the comments section, and answer the questions about yourself. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Basic Thai Sentence Patterns – A Comprehensive Guide

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When you learn any language, knowing its basic sentence patterns helps you get a grip of the language as a whole, and allows you to communicate more effectively. So if you’re a Thai learner and don’t know how to form sentences in Thai yet, knowing certain Thai sentence structures and patterns is like a shortcut to creating your own sentences.  

In this lesson, we’ll teach you common Thai sentence patterns that you can use in daily life. While there are various types of sentence patterns in the Thai language, we’ll focus on just ten patterns with examples. Also keep in mind that we won’t be focusing on the tenses today. 

Let’s get started!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Thai Table of Contents
  1. Linking Two Nouns: A is B
  2. Describing Nouns: A is [Adjective]
  3. [Subject] Wants / Needs
  4. [Subject] has to [Verb]
  5. [Subject] Likes [Noun/Verb]
  6. Please…
  7. May I? / Can I?
  8. What is…?
  9. When is…?
  10. Where is…?
  11. Conclusion

1. Linking Two Nouns: A is B

Before we give you our list of Thai sentence patterns, we think you should know some basic vocabulary:  

  • รูปแบบประโยค (rûup-bàaep-bprà-yòok) is “sentence pattern”
  • รูปแบบ (rûup-bàaep) is “pattern” 
  • ประโยค (bprà-yòok) is “sentence” 
Sentence Patterns

The first simple Thai sentence pattern you should know is “A is B,” which is used for linking two nouns. Below are some examples of this Thai sentence structure.

Sentence structure
A + เป็น (bpen) + B
A + คือ (khuue) + B

Explanation:  

เป็น (bpen), อยู่ (yùu), and คือ (khuue) are used for the verb “to be” in Thai. While they all refer to the same verb, เป็น (bpen), อยู่ (yùu), and คือ (khuue) have different meanings, are used in different situations, and can’t substitute one another.  

  • เป็น (bpen) is used to explain what A is. The information used to explain A can include things such as a person’s job or marital status.
  • อยู่ (yùu) is used to explain where A is. So in this case, B is the place.
  • คือ (khuue) is used to explain what A is. The information used to explain A is either a fact/status that doesn’t change, or information that other parties don’t know.

Because เป็น (bpen) and คือ (khuue) seem pretty similar, it can be difficult to decide which one to use in a given scenario. Even Thai people find this hard; they can use it correctly, but can’t explain why. Let’s look at some Thai example sentences to help you understand better.  

Example 1:  
แม่เป็นครู
mâae-bpen-khruu
“Mom is a teacher.”

A Teacher Carrying a Stack of Books

Mom is a teacher.

Example 2:  
แก้วเป็นสาวโสด
gâaew-bpen-sǎao-sòot
“Kaew is a single lady.”

Example 3:  
ฤทธิเป็นคนที่ไม่เก่งเลขเลย
rít-bpen-khon-thîi-mâi-gèng-lêek-looei
“Rit is a person who is not good at math.”

Example 4:  
ตอนนี้รัตน์อยู่ที่นี่
dtaawn-níi-rát-yùu-thîi-nîi
“Rat is here now.”

Example 5:  
กระเป๋าอยู่บนโต๊ะทานอาหาร
grà-bpǎo-yùu-bon-dtó-thaan-aa-hǎan
“The bag is on the dining table.”

Example 6:  
หมีแพนด้าอยู่ในสวนสัตว์ที่เชียงใหม่
mǐi-phaaen-dâa-yùu-nai-sǔuan-sàt-thîi-chiiang-mài
“Pandas are in the zoo at Chaingmai.”

Example 7:  
ที่นี่คือโรงพยาบาลที่ใหญ่ที่สุดในจังหวัด
thîi-nîi-khuue-roong-phá-yaa-baan-thîi-yài-thîi-sùt-nai-jang-wàt
“Here is the largest hospital in the province.”

Hospital Workers and a Patient in a Hallway

Here is the largest hospital in the province.

Example 8:  
ลัดดาคือเพื่อนที่ดีที่สุดของฉัน
lát-daa-khuue-phûuean-thîi-dii-thîi-sùt-khǎawng-chǎn
“Ladda is my best friend.”

Example 9:  
ผลไม้ที่พ่อชอบกินที่สุดคือแตงโม
phǒn-lá-mái-thîi-phâaw-châawp-gin-thîi-sùt-khuue-dtaaeng-moo
“Dad’s favorite fruit is watermelon.”

2. Describing Nouns: A is [Adjective]

Another Thai sentence construction you should know is “A is [Adjective].” This is a very easy Thai sentence pattern, used to describe nouns with adjectives. Let’s take a look.

Sentence structure:  

Noun + Adjective

Explanation:  

If you want to describe a noun, all you have to do is put the adjective after that noun.

Example 1:  
กานดาสูงและผอม
gaan-daa-sǔung-láe-phǎawm
“Ganda is tall and slim.”

Example 2:  
เก้าอี้ไม้ตัวนั้นราคาแพงมาก
gâo-îi-mái-dtuua-nán-raa-khaa-phaaeng-mâak
“That wooden chair is very expensive.”

Example 3:  
มะระสีเขียวและมีรสขม
má-rá-mii-sǐi-khǐiao-láe-mii-rót-khǒm
Bitter melon is green and bitter.”

Additional note:  

มะระ (má-rá) is “bitter melon” in Thai. It’s one of the fruits that Thai people like to eat.

Sentence Components

3. [Subject] Wants / Needs

Some of the most useful Thai phrases are those for expressing “want” and “need.” There are a few different Thai sentence patterns you should remember for this.

Sentence structure:  
subject + ต้องการ (dtâawng-gaan) + noun / verb
subject + อยาก (yàak) + verb
subject + อยากได้ (yàak-dâi) + noun 

Explanation:  

ต้องการ (dtâawng-gaan), อยาก (yàak), and อยากได้ (yàak-dâi) mean both “want” and “need” in Thai, and can substitute one another.

However, ต้องการ (dtâawng-gaan) sounds more formal than อยาก (yàak) and อยากได้ (yàak-dâi). Thai people often use ต้องการ (dtâawng-gaan) in formal situations, and อยาก (yàak) and อยากได้ (yàak-dâi) in casual conversations.  

To express your wants and needs, you can use any of the structures above. Here are a few Thai sentence examples for you.

Example 1:  
คุณครูต้องการคอมพิวเตอร์เครื่องใหม่
khun-khruu-dtâawng-gaan-khaawm-phíu-dtôoe-khrûueng-mài
“The teachers want a new computer.”

Example 2:  
โรงพยาบาลต้องการจ้างนางพยาบาลเพิ่ม
roong-phá-yaa-baan-dtâawng-gaan-jâang-naang-phá-yaa-baan-phôoem
“The hospital wants to hire more nurses.”

Example 3:  
เธอต้องการอะไรเพิ่มมั๊ย
thooe-dtâawng-gaan-à-rai-phôoem-mái
“Do you want anything more?”

Example 4:  
น้ำตาลอยากไปเที่ยวหัวหิน
nám-dtaan-yàak-bpai-thîiao-hǔua-hǐn
“Namtan wants to go to Huahin.”

Example 5:  
แม่อยากลองทำเค้กสูตรใหม่
mâae-yàak-laawng-tham-khéek-sùut-mài
“Mom wants to try a new cake recipe.”

Cake Batter being Mixed

Mom wants to try a new cake recipe.

Example 6:  
มินท์อยากแต่งงานก่อนอายุ 30 ปี
mín-yàak-dtàaeng-ngaan-gàawn-aa-yú-sǎam-sìp
“Mint wants to get married before she is 30 years old.”

Example 7:  
ฉันอยากได้รองเท้าคู่ใหม่
chǎn-yàak-dâi-raawng-tháo-khûu-mài
“I want a new pair of shoes.”

Example 8:  
รพีไม่อยากได้งานเพิ่ม
rá-phii-mâi-yàak-dâi-ngaan-phôoem
“Rapee doesn’t want more jobs.”

Example 9:  
มีใครอยากได้ชาเพิ่มมั๊ย
mii-khrai-yàak-dâi-chaa-phôoem-mái
“Anyone want more tea?”

4. [Subject] has to [Verb] 

Another basic Thai sentence pattern you should know is “I have …”.  You can use this Thai sentence pattern to express what you have to do.

Sentence structure:  

Subject + ต้อง (dtâawng) + Verb

Explanation:  

This type of sentence in Thai is pretty easy and straightforward. You just put the subject, followed by ต้อง (dtâawng), which means “must” or “have to” in Thai, and then the verb.

Example 1:  
เธอต้องออกจากบ้านเดี๋ยวนี้ ไม่งั้นจะสาย
thooe-dtâawng-àawk-jàak-bâan-dǐiao-níi mâi-ngán-jà-sǎai
“You have to leave now or else you will be late.”

Example 2:  
ยายต้องกินยาก่อนนอนทุกวัน
yaai-dtâawng-gin-yaa-gàawn-naawn-thúuk-wan
“Grandma has to take medicine before bed every day.”

Example 3:  
วรรณาต้องไปเชียงรายพรุ่งนี้
wan-naa-dtâawng-bpai-chiiang-raai-phrûng-níi
“Wanna has to go to Chiangrai tomorrow.”

5. [Subject] Likes [Noun/Verb] 

Another common Thai language sentence structure is that for expressing likes and preferences. It’s one of the most basic Thai sentence patterns you can use to talk about your favorite things and activities.

Sentence structure:  

Subject + ชอบ (châawp) + Noun / Verb

Explanation:  

ชอบ (châawp) is “like” in Thai. To use this sentence pattern, you put the subject, followed by ชอบ (châawp), and then the noun or verb.

Example 1:  
แม่ชอบกินแก้วมังกร
mâae-châawp-gin-gâaeo-mang-gaawn
“Mom likes to eat dragon fruits.”

Example 2:  
นภาชอบสีชมพู
ná-phaa-châawp-sǐi-chom-phuu
“Napa likes pink.”

A Girl Wearing Lots of Pink

Napa likes pink.

Example 3:  
ตุ้มไม่ชอบดูหนังผี
dtûm-mâi-châawp-duu-nǎng-phǐi
“Tum doesn’t like scary movies.”

6. Please… 

The next basic Thai sentence structure we’ll show you is used to politely ask someone to do something. There are two Thai sentence patterns you need to know.

Sentence structure:  
กรุณา (gà-rú-naa) + Verb 
ช่วย (chûuai) + Verb 

Explanation:  

Thai people use กรุณา (gà-rú-naa) and ช่วย (chûuai) when they want to ask others to do something. กรุณา (gà-rú-naa) and ช่วย (chûuai) are pretty much the same, except กรุณา (gà-rú-naa) is used in formal situations while ช่วย (chûuai) is more often used in casual conversations.

Example 1:  
กรุณาถอดรองเท้าก่อนเข้าห้อง
gà-rú-naa-thàawt-raawng-tháo-gàawn-khâo-hâawng
“Please take off your shoes before entering the room.”

Example 2:  
กรุณาอย่าส่งเสียงดัง
gà-rú-naa-yàa-sòng-sǐiang-dang
“Please don’t make loud noises.”

Example 3:  
กรุณาให้ความร่วมมือกับเจ้าหน้าที่
gà-rú-naa-hâi-khwaam-rûuam-muue-gàp-jâo-nâa-thîi
“Please cooperate with our staff.”

Example 4:  
ช่วยฉันทำความสะอาดห้องหน่อย
chûuai-chǎn-tham-khaawm-sà-àat-hâawng-nàauy
“Please help me clean the room.”

Example 5:  
ช่วยเงียบหน่อย
chûuai-ngîiap-nàauy
“Please be quiet.”

A Woman at a Movie Theater Making the Quiet Gesture

Please be quiet.

Example 6:  
ช่วยเดินเร็ว ๆ หน่อย
chûuai-dooen-reo-reo-nòi
“Please walk faster.”

7. May I? / Can I?

This sentence pattern in Thai is used to ask for permission. However, this is considered an imperfect sentence because Thai people leave the word “may” or “can” out.

Sentence structure:  

ขอ (khǎaw) + Verb + ได้มั้ย (dâi-mái)

Explanation:  

This Thai sentence pattern is quite different from its  English counterpart. This is because there is no ฉัน (chǎn), which is “I” in Thai, in the sentence.    

You start the sentence with ขอ (khǎaw), which means “ask.” Next, you put the verb, followed by ได้มั้ย (dâi-mái), which is used to make a permission question in Thai.

Example 1:  
ขอเข้าไปได้มั้ย
khǎaw-khâo-bpai-dâi-mái
“May I come in?”

Example 2:  
ขอยืมหนังสือเล่มนั้นได้มั้ย
khǎaw-yuuem-nǎng-sǔue-lêm-nán-dâi-mái
“Can I borrow that book?”

A Woman Smiling with a Book on Top of Her Head

Can I borrow that book?

Example 3:  
ขอไปดูหนังกับเพื่อนวันเสาร์นี้ได้มั้ย
khǎaw-bpai-duu-nǎng-gàp-phûuen-wan-sǎo-níi-dâi-mái
“Can I go see the movie with my friend this Saturday?”

8. What is…? 

Another useful Thai sentence pattern you should learn is “What is…?” You can use this sentence pattern in Thai to ask for information about something.

Sentence structure:  

… + คือ (khuue) + อะไร (à-rai

Explanation:  

As mentioned earlier, คือ (khuue) is one of the words for the verb “to be” in Thai. Also note that อะไร (à-rai) is “what.”  

You may notice that Thai people use คือ (khuue), not เป็น (bpen), in this sentence structure. This is because you’re asking for information you don’t know.

Example 1:  
นี่คืออะไร
nîi-khuue-à-rai
“What is this?”

Example 2:  
อาหารที่เราสั่งครั้งที่แล้วคืออะไร
aa-hǎan-thîi-rao-sàng-khráng-thîi-láaeo-khuue-à-rai
“What is the food we ordered last time?”

Example 3:  
เครื่องดื่มที่คุณชอบคืออะไร
khrûueng-dùuem-thîi-khun-châawp-khuue-à-rai
“What is your favorite drink?”

9. When is…? 

Now that you’ve learned the “What is …?” sentence structure, it makes sense to learn the “When is…?” structure as well. With this structure, you can make Thai phrases for asking about the time.

Sentence structure:  

… + เมื่อไหร่ (mûuea-rài)

Explanation:  

เมื่อไหร่ (mûuea-rài) is “when” in Thai. You put the event that you want to know the time of, followed by เมื่อไหร่ (mûue-rài).

Example 1:  
ประชุมเมื่อไหร่
bprà-chum-mûuea-rài
“When is the meeting?”

Example 2:  
เธอจะเริ่มทำงานเมื่อไหร่
thooe-jà-rôoem-tham-ngan-mûuea-rài
“When will you start working?”

Example 3:  
ตาลจะมาถึงเมื่อไหร่
dtaan-jà-ma-thǔeng-mûuea-rài
“When will Tarn arrive?”

10. Where is…? 

You can now ask for more information and about the time. In this section, we’ll also teach you how to ask about location. This is one of those basic Thai phrases you’ll use all the time! 

Sentence structure:  
Place + อยู่ที่ไหน (yùu-thîi-nǎi)
Place + ไปทางไหน (bpai-thaang-nǎi)

Explanation:  

Both of the structures above are pretty similar to each other, and are used to ask about location. The first one is the Thai translation sentence pattern of “Where is …?”  The other is closer to: “How to go to …?”

Example 1:  
ห้องน้ำอยู่ที่ไหน
hâawng-nám-yùu-thîi-nǎi
Where is the toilet?

Signs for the Restroom

Where is the toilet?

Example 2:  
บ้านของเธออยู่ที่ไหน
bâan-khǎawng-thooe-yùu-thîi-nǎi
“Where is your house?”

Example 3:  
ภูเขาที่สูงที่สุดในไทยอยู่ที่ไหน
phuu-khǎo-thîi-sǔung-thîi-sùt-nai-thai-yùu-thîi-nǎi
“Where is the highest mountain in Thailand?”

Example 4:  
จุดชมวิวไปทางไหน
jùt-chom-wiu-bpai-thaang-nǎi
“How to go to the viewpoint?”

Example 5:  
สถานีตำรวจที่ใกล้ที่สุดไปทางไหน
sà-thǎa-nii-dtam-rùuat-thîi-glâi-thîi-sùt-bpai-thaang-nǎi
“How to go to the nearest police station?”

Example 6:  
ประชาสัมพันธ์ไปทางไหน
bprà-chaa-sǎm-phan-bpai-thaang-nǎi
“How to go to the information center?”

11. Conclusion

The lesson has finally come to an end, and you’ve already learned ten useful Thai sentence patterns for everyday use! We hope they’re not too hard for you, but remember that it may take a while to memorize all of them. Using a variety of Thai sentence patterns in daily conversations will help you get familiar with them; eventually, you’ll be able to use them with great fluency.  

Are there any specific topics you want to learn about in future articles? Leave us a comment to let us know! If you have no clue what you want to learn next, we have a list of fun lessons for you at ThaiPod101.com, so don’t forget to check it out.  

If you want to know more about sentence structure in Thai, our word order article is a great place to expand your knowledge. However, if that’s too serious a lesson for you, what about listening to a conversation about Thai tea and a date? Our lesson about ordering food at restaurants is also an interesting choice.

Happy learning!

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The Top 100 Thai Verbs You Should Know

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How many actions do you think you do in a day? That number reflects the importance of knowing a language’s verbs for effective communication. 

In this article, you’ll learn 100 Thai verbs that every beginner needs to know. Further, we’ll teach you a little bit about the grammar and usage of these verbs through examples. We believe you’ll be very happy to hear that this is a simple and easy topic!

Is there subject-verb agreement in Thai? What about Thai verb conjugation? The answer to both is a resounding “No!” Thai people use the same form of verbs regardless of the subject.  

Are there Thai verb tenses for present, future, and past? The answer is no. Thai people use the same verb forms regardless of the time.  

So you can see now that this lesson will mainly focus on vocabulary. Basically all you need to worry about is memorizing our Thai verbs list! 
We’ll start this lesson with basic information about Thai verbs, followed by our list of the most useful Thai verbs for beginners. Then, you’ll also get to learn about auxiliary verbs in Thai, and other verbs that are important to know for easy communication.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Useful Verbs in Thai Table of Contents
  1. Basic Information About Thai Verbs
  2. Intransitive Verbs
  3. Transitive Verbs
  4. The Verb “To Be”
  5. Helping Verbs
  6. Conclusion

1. Basic Information About Thai Verbs

Top Verbs

คำกริยา (kham-gà-rí-yaa) is “verb” in Thai. Before we present to you our list of Thai verbs, we thought it would be nice to give you an explanation about verb types in the Thai language, as well as how to use verbs in a sentence.

1- Verb Types 

There are four types of verbs in the Thai language, listed below. A detailed explanation of each type will be explained in the following sections.

2- Thai Verbs in a Sentence

As mentioned above, there’s no change in Thai verb form, so you don’t have to learn about Thai verb conjugation. Still, we’ll give you a basic idea of how verbs are used in Thai sentence structure.

  • Affirmative sentence: subject + verb + object (if any)
  • Negative sentence: subject + ไม่ (mâi) which is “no” in Thai + verb + object (if any)
  • Question: Add a question word to the sentence; no change in verb.

In the following sections, we present to you the most essential Thai verbs with examples. 

2. Intransitive Verbs

More Essential Verbs

อกรรมกริยา (à-gam-gà-rí-yaa) is “intransitive verbs” in Thai. These are verbs that are able to make a sentence complete without the use of an object. Below is a list of Thai intransitive verbs that are often used in daily life.

1- Walk

เดิน (dooen

Example:  

ยายเดินไปตลาดทุกเช้า

yaai-dooen-bpai-dtà-làat-thúk-cháo

“My grandmother walks to the market every morning.”

2- Run 

วิ่ง (wîng

Example:  

เธอวิ่งเพื่อลดความอ้วนทุกวัน

thooe-wîng-phûuea-lót-khwaam-ûuan-thúk-wan

“She runs everyday to lose weight.”

3- Stand 

ยืน (yuuen

Example:  

ฉันยืนรอเธอนานมาก

chǎn-yuuen-raaw-thooe-naan-mâak

“I have been standing here, waiting for you for ages.”

4- Sit 

นั่ง (nâng

Example:  

ตาอายุมากแล้ว พอนั่งนาน ๆ ก็ปวดหลัง

dtaa-aa-yú-mâak-láaew phaaw-nâng-naan-naan-gâaw-bpùuat-lǎng

“My grandpa is quite old. If he sits for a long time, his back hurts.”

5- Jump 

กระโดด (gra-doot

Example:  

พี่ชายฉันขายาว เลยกระโดดได้ไกล

phîi-chaai-chǎn-khǎa-yaao looei-grà-dòot-dâi-glai

“My older brother can jump far because of his long legs.”

6- Fly 

บิน (bin

Example:  

ทำไมนกตัวนั้นบินไม่ได้

tham-mai-nók-dtuua-nán-bin-mâi-dâi

“Why can’t that bird fly?”

7- Kneel

คุกเข่า (khúk-khào

Example:  

เขาคุกเข่าขอแฟนแต่งงาน

Khǎo-khúk-khào-khǎaw-faaen-dtàaeng-ngaan

“He kneeled, then asked his girlfriend to marry him.”

8- Wake up

ตื่นนอน (dtùuen-naawn);  ตื่น (dtùuen)

Example 1:  

วันนี้เธอตื่นนอนกี่โมง

wan-níi-thooe-dtùuen-naawn-gìi-moong

“What time did you wake up today?”

Example 2:  

วันนี้ฉันตื่นสาย

wan-níi-chǎn-dtùuen-sǎai

“Today, I woke up late.”

Additional Note: ตื่นนอน (dtùuen-naawn) and ตื่น (dtùuen) have exactly the same meaning. However, ตื่นนอน (dtùuen-naawn) is a bit more formal than ตื่น (dtùuen).

9- Sleep 

นอน (naawn

Example

เมื่อคืนแม่นอนไม่หลับ

mûuea-khuuen-mâae-naawn-mâi-làp

“Mom couldn’t sleep last night.”

10- Nap 

งีบ (ngîip

Example

ถ้าง่วง ก็งีบสัก 15 นาทีสิ

thâa-ngûuang gâaw-ngîip-sák-sìp-hâa-naa-thii-sì

“If you are sleepy, take a nap for 15 minutes.”

11- Yawn 

หาว (hǎao

Example

ดูท่าทางน้องจะง่วงแล้วนะ หาวไม่หยุดเลย

duu-thâa-thaang-náawng-jà-ngûuang-láaew-ná hǎao-mâi-yhùt-looei

“Looks like she is sleepy; she has been yawning many times for a while now.”

12- Snore 

กรน (gron

Example

พ่อนอนกรนเสียงดัง

phâaw-naawn-gron-sǐiang-dang

“Dad snores loudly.”

13- Sleepwalking 

ละเมอ (lá-mooe

Example

หลานชายของฉันนอนละเมอบ่อย ๆ 

lǎan-chaai-khǎawng-chǎn-naawn-lá-mooe-bàauy-bàauy

“My nephew sleepwalks often.”

14- Dream 

ฝัน (fǎn

Example

เมื่อคืนฉันฝันดีมาก 

mûuea-khuuen-chǎn-fǎn-dii-mâak

“I dreamed very well (had a good dream) last night.”

15- Speak 

พูด (phûut

Example

ช่วยพูดเสียงดัง ๆ หน่อย ฉันไม่ได้ยิน

chûuai-phûut-sǐiang-dang-dang-nàauy chǎn-mâi-dâi-yin

“Please speak loudly, I can’t hear you.”

16- Smile

ยิ้ม (yím

Example

พอยิ้มแล้ว เธอดูน่ารักมาก

phaaw-yím-láaew thooe-duu-nâa-rák-mâak

“You look very pretty when you smile.”

Young Girl Smiling with Sunscreen on Face

17- Laugh

หัวเราะ (hǔa-ráw

Example

หัวเราะอะไรกันอยู่

hǔa-ráw-à-rai-gan-yhùu

“What are you laughing at?”

18- Cry 

ร้องไห้ (ráawng-hâi

Example

เด็กคนนั้นร้องไห้เสียงดังเพราะตุ๊กตาหาย

dèk-khon-nán-ráawng-hâi-sǐiang-dang-phráw-dtúk-gà-dtaa-hǎai

“That child cried loudly because she lost her doll.”

19- Hiccup

สะอึก (sà-ùek

Example

ต้องทำยังไงถึงจะหยุดสะอึก

dtâawng-tham-yang-ngai-thǔng-jà-yhùt-sà-ùek

“What should I do to stop hiccuping?”

20- Sneeze

จาม (jaam

Example

เธอจามไม่หยุดเลย ไม่สบายเหรอ

thooe-jaam-mâi-yhùt-looei mâi-sà-baai-rǒoe

“You have been sneezing, are you sick?”

21- Lie 

โกหก (goo-hok

Example

อย่าโกหกฉันนะ

yhàa-goo-hòk-chǎn-ná

“Don’t lie to me.”

22- Work 

ทำงาน (tham-ngaan

Example

พนักงานใหม่คนนั้นทำงานดีมาก

phá-nák-ngaan-mài-khon-nán-tham-ngaan-dii-mâak

“That new employee works very well.”

23- Take a bath 

อาบน้ำ (àap-nám

Example:  

พออาบน้ำแล้วฉันก็รู้สึกสดชื่น

phaaw-àap-nám-láaew-chǎn-gâaw-rúu-sùek-sòt-chûuen

“I feel fresh after taking a bath.”

24- Shampoo

สระผม (sà-phǒm

Example:  

พ่อสระผมทุกวัน

phâaw-sà-phǒm-thúk-wan

“Dad shampoos his hair everyday.”

25- Fall 

ตก (dtòk

Example:  

แมวตกจากต้นไม้

maaeo-dtòk-jàak-dtôn-mái

“The cat fell from the tree.”

26- Float 

ลอย (laauy

Example:  

ทำไมเรือถึงลอยอยู่กลางน้ำได้

tham-mai-ruuea-thǔeng-laauy-yhùu-glaang-nám-dâi

“Why do ships float on the water?”

27- Swim 

ว่ายน้ำ (wâai-nám

Example:  

เด็ก ๆ ชอบว่ายน้ำ

dèk-dèk-châawp-wâai-nám

“Children like to swim.”

Children Ready to Swim at the Beach

28- Go 

ไป (bpai

Example:  

ลุงออกไปไหนเมื่อเช้านี้

lung-àawk-bpai-nǎi-mûuea-cháo-níi

“Where did Uncle go this morning?”

29- Come

มา (maa

Example:  

มานี่หน่อย  ฉันอยากได้คนช่วย

maa-nîi-nàauy chǎn-yàak-dâi-khon-chûuai

“Come here, I need help.”

30- (Get) Sick

ป่วย (bpùuai

Example:  

อย่าตากฝน เดี๋ยวป่วย

yhàa-dtàak-fǒn dǐiao-bpùuai

“Don’t stay in the rain or you will get sick.”

31- Dance

เต้น (dtên

Example:  

นักร้องคนนั้นเต้นเก่งมาก

nák-ráawng-khon-nán-dtên-gèng-mâak

“That singer dances very well.”

32- Sing

ร้องเพลง (ráawng-pleeng

Example:  

แม่ร้องเพลงไปด้วย ขับรถไปด้วย

mâae-ráawng-pleeng-bpai-dûuai khàp-rót-bpai-dûuai

“Mom sings while driving.”

33- Pay respect

ไหว้ (wâai

Example:  

นักเรียนไหว้คุณครู

nák-riian-wâai-khun-khruu

“The student pays respect to the teacher.”

34- Born

เกิด (gooet

Example:  

เธอเกิดวันอังคาร

thooe-gòoet-wan-ang-khaan

“She was born on Tuesday.”

35- Die

ตาย (dtaai

Example:  

ตาของเขาตายเพราะอุบัติเหตุรถยนต์

dtaa-khǎawng-khǎo-dtaai-phráw-ù-bàt-thì-hèet-rót-yon

“His grandpa died because of a car accident.”

36- Swear 

สาบาน (sǎa-baan

Example:  

เขาสาบานว่าจะไม่โกหกอีก

khǎo-sǎa-baan-wâa-jà-mâi-gaaw-hòk-ìik

“He swears to never lie again.”

37- Greet

ทักทาย (thák-thaai

Example:  

คนไทยทักทายกันโดยการกล่าวสวัสดี

khon-thai-thák-thaai-gan-dooi-gaan-glàao-sà-wàt-dii

Thai people greet each other by saying ‘hello.’”

38- Understand 

เข้าใจ (khâo-jai

Example:  

เธอเข้าใจที่ฉันพูดมั๊ย

thooe-khâo-jai-thîi-chǎn-phûut-mái

“Do you understand what I said?”

39- Breathe 

หายใจ (hǎai-jai

Example:  

กบหายใจใต้น้ำได้มั๊ย

gòp-hǎai-jai-dtâi-nám-dâi-mái

“Can frogs breathe underwater?”

40- Regret 

เสียใจ (sǐia-jai

Example:  

ฉันเสียใจที่ไม่ตั้งใจเรียนภาษาอังกฤษ

chǎn-sǐia-jai-thîi-mâi-dtâng-jai-riian-phaa-sǎa-ang-grìt

“I regret not paying attention in English class.”

41- Bark 

เห่า (hào

Example:  

หมาเห่าเสียงดัง

mhǎa-hào-sǐiang-dang

“The dog barks loudly.”

42- Agree 

เห็นด้วย (hěn-dûuai

Example:  

ฉันเห็นด้วยกับมติการประชุม

chǎn-hěn-dûuai-gàp-má-thì-gaan-bprà-chum

“I agree with the resolution.”

43- Exercise

ออกกำลังกาย (àawk-gam-lang-gaai

Example:  

ปู่ออกกำลังกายทุกวัน เลยสุขภาพดี

bpùu-àawk-gam-lang-gaai-thúk-wan looei-sùk-gà-phâap-dii

“My grandpa exercises everyday, so he is healthy.”

3. Transitive Verbs

สกรรมกริยา (sà-gam-gà-rí-yaa) is “transitive verbs” in Thai. These are verbs that can’t complete a sentence with their meaning alone; the sentence will require an object to be complete. Below is a list of Thai transitive verbs that are often used in everyday life.

44- Eat 

กิน (gin); ทาน (thaan); รับประทาน (ráp-bprà-thaan

Example 1:  

ฉันชอบกินก๋วยเตี๋ยว

chǎn-châawp-gin-gǔuai-dtǐiao

“I like to eat noodles.”

Example 2:  

เธอจะทานอะไร

thooe-jà-thaan-à-rai

“What do you want to eat?”

Example 3:  

เมื่อวานนี้ คุณแม่รับประทานอาหารไทยตอนเย็น

mûuea-waan-níi khun-mâae-ráp-bprà-thaan-aa-hǎan-thai-dtaawn-yen

“Yesterday, my mother ate Thai food in the evening.”

Additional Note: These three words have exactly the same meaning. However, among these three words, รับประทาน (ráp-bprà-thaan) is the most formal one, followed by ทาน (thaan) and กิน (gin), respectively.

45- Drink 

ดื่ม (dùuem

Example:  

ฉันชอบดื่มนมช็อคโกแลต

chǎn-châawp-dùuem-nom-cháawk-goo-láaet

“I like to drink chocolate milk.”

46- Boil 

ต้ม (dtôm

Example:  

เธอกำลังต้มไข่

thooe-gam-lang-dtôm-khài

“She is boiling the egg.”

47- Fry 

ทอด (thâawt

Example:  

เธอต้องรอให้น้ำมันร้อนก่อนทอดไก่

thooe-dtâawng-raaw-hâi-nám-man-ráawn-gàawn-thôot-gài

“You have to wait for the oil to be hot before frying chicken.”

48- Stir fry

ผัด (phàt

Example:  

ผัดผักอย่างไร

phàt-phàk-yàang-rai

“How do you stir fry vegetables?”

Someone Stir Frying Vegetables

49- Heat up 

อุ่น (ùn

Example:  

ช่วยอุ่นนมให้หน่อย

chûuai-ùn-nom-hâi-nàauy

“Could you please heat up the milk?”

50- Chop 

สับ (sàp

Example:  

สับช็อคโกแลตให้เป็นชิ้นเล็ก ๆ

sàp-cháawk-goo-láaet-hâi-bpen-chín-lék-lék

“Chop the chocolate into small pieces.”

51- Slice 

หั่น (hàn

Example:  

แม่หั่นหมูได้บางมาก

mâae-hàn-mǔu-dâi-baang-mâak

“Mom slices pork very thinly.”

52- Peel 

ปอก (bpàawk

Example:  

ช่วยปอกเปลือกแอปเปิ้ลให้หน่อยได้มั๊ย

chûui-bpàawk-plùueak-áap-bpôoen-hâi-nàauy-dâi-mái

“Can you peel the apple for me?”

53- Wash (dishes)

ล้าง (láang

Example:  

วันนี้ใครจะล้างจาน

wan-níi-khrai-jà-láang-jaan

“Who will wash the dishes today?”

54- Wash (cloth) 

ซัก (sák

Example:  

แม่ซักผ้าปูเตียงเมื่อวาน

mâae-sák-phâa-bpuu-dtiiang-mûuea-waan

“Mom washed the bed sheet yesterday.”

55- Hang 

ตาก (dtáak

Example:  

พ่อกำลังตากผ้า

phâaw-gam-lang-dtàak-phâa

“Dad is hanging clothes to dry now.”

56- Iron 

รีด (riit

Example:  

เธอรีดผ้าเก่งมั๊ย

thooe-rîit-phâa-gèng-mái

“Are you good at ironing?”

57- Look 

ดู (duu

Example:  

ดูนี่สิ สวยจัง

duu-nîi-sì sǔuai-jang

“Look at this, so beautiful.”

58- Read

อ่าน (àan

Example:  

พ่ออ่านหนังสือเร็วมาก

phâaw-àan-nǎng-sǔue-reo-mâak

“Dad reads books very fast.”

Old Man Reading the Bible

59- Write

เขียน (khǐian

Example:  

ครูเขียนภาษาญี่ปุ่นเก่ง

khruu-khǐian-phaa-sǎa-yîi-bpùn-khèng

“My teacher is good at writing Japanese.”

60- Type 

พิมพ์ (phim

Example:  

ใครเป็นคนพิมพ์รายงานนี้

khrai-bpen-khon-phim-raai-ngaan-níi

“Who typed this report?”

61- Listen 

ฟัง (fang

Example:  

มุกดาชอบฟังเพลงแจ็ส

múk-daa-châawp-fang-pleeng-jáaet

“Mukda likes listening to jazz music.”

62- Hit 

ตี (dtii

Example:  

ครูไม่ควรตีนักเรียน

khruu-mâi-khuuan-dtii-nák-riian

“Teachers shouldn’t hit students.”

63- Kick 

เตะ (dtè

Example:  

เขาเตะลูกบอลแรงมาก

khǎo-dte-lûuk-baawn-raaeng-mâak

“He hit the ball very hard.”

64- Shave 

โกน (goon

Example:  

พระต้องโกนผม

phrá-dtâawng-goon-phǒm

“Monks have to shave their head.”

65- Blow 

เป่า (bpào

Example:  

ซุปร้อนมาก ต้องเป่าก่อนกิน

súp-ráawn-mâak dtâawng-bpào-gàawn-gin

“The soup is very hot, so blow it before eating.”

66- Do 

ทำ (tham

Example:  

อย่าลืมทำการบ้าน

yhàa-luuem-tham-gaan-bâan

“Don’t forget to do homework.”

67- Wear (clothing) 

ใส่ (sài

Example:  

พรุ่งนี้เธอจะใส่อะไร

phrûng-níi-jà-sài-à-rai

“What do you want to wear tomorrow?”

68- Take off 

ถอด (thàawt

Example:  

อย่าลืมถอดผ้ากันเปื้อนออก

yhàa-luuem-thàawt-phâa-gan-bpûuean-àawk

“Don’t forget to take off your apron.”

69- Ride 

ขี่ (khìi

Example:  

ฉันขี่จักรยานไม่เป็น

chǎn-khìi-jàk-gà-yaan-mâi-bpen

“I can’t ride bicycles.”

70- Learn 

เรียน (riian

Example:  

พี่เรียนภาษาจีนทุกวันอาทิตย์

phîi-riian-phaa-sǎa-jiin-thúk-wan-aa-thít

“My older sister learns Chinese every Sunday.”

71- Play 

เล่น (lên

Example:  

ไปเล่นเกมส์กันเถอะ

bpai-lên-geem-gan-thòe

“Let’s play games.”

72- Buy 

ซื้อ (súue

Example:  

แม่ซื้อผักจากตลาดเยอะมาก

mâae-súue-phàk-jàak-dtà-làat-yóe-mâak

“Mom bought a lot of vegetables from the market.”

73- Sell

ขาย (khǎai

Example:  

ฉันเพิ่งขายรถคันเก่าทิ้งไป

chǎn-phôoeng-khǎai-rót-khan-gào-thíng-bpai

“I just sold my old car.”

74- Teach

สอน (sǎawn

Example:  

เธอสอนฉันทำบราวนี่ได้มั๊ย

thooe-sǎawn-chǎn-tham-braao-nîi-dâi-mái

“Can you teach me how to make brownies?”

Brownie Batter in a Big Bowl

75- Open 

เปิด (bpòoet

Example:  

เปิดหน้าต่างให้หน่อย

bpòoet-nâa-dtàang-hâi-nàauy

“Please open the window.”

76- Close

ปิด (bpìt

Example:  

อย่าลืมปิดประตู

yhàa-luuem-bpìt-bprà-dtuu

“Don’t forget to close the door.”

77- Turn on 

เปิด (bpòoet

Example:  

เงียบจังเลย เปิดทีวีหน่อยได้มั๊ย

ngîiap-jang-looei bpòot-thii-vii-nàauy-dâi-mái

“It is so quiet. Can you please turn on the TV?”

78- Turn off

ปิด (bpìt

Example:  

หนาวจัง ปิดแอร์ได้มั๊ย

nǎao-jang bpìt-aae-dâi-mái

“I’m cold. Can I turn off the air conditioner?”

79- Send

ส่ง (sòng

Example:  

ฉันจะส่งเอกสารให้ทางอีเมลนะ

chǎn-jà-sòng-èek-gà-sǎan-hâi-thaang-ii-meeo-ná

“I will send documents to you via email.”

80- Receive

รับ (ráp

Example:  

เธอได้รับอีเมลจากฉันรึเปล่า

thooe-dâi-ráp-ii-meeo-jàak-chǎn-rúe-bplào

“Did you receive my email?”

81- Produce

ผลิต (phà-lìt

Example:  

บริษัทนี้ผลิตรถยนต์

baaw-rí-sàt-níi-phà-lìt-rót-yon

“This company produces cars.”

82- Cut 

ตัด (dtàt

Example:  

ตัดกระดาษให้หน่อยได้มั๊ย

dtàt-grà-dàat-hâi-nàauy-dâi-mái

“Can you cut that paper for me?”

83- Kill 

ฆ่า (khâa

Example:  

ใครฆ่าเด็กคนนั้น

khrai-khâa-dèk-khon-nán

“Who killed that child?”

84- Build

สร้าง (sâang

Example:  

ใครสร้างบ้านหลังนี้

khrai-sâang-bâan-lǎang-níi

“Who built this house?”

85- Lean 

พิง (phing

Example:  

กรุณาอย่ายืนพิงกระจก

gà-rú-naa-yhàa-yuuen-phing-grà-jòk

“Please do not lean on this glass.”

86- Fold 

พับ (pháp

Example:  

พับเสื้อแบบนั้นยังไง

pháp-sûuea-bàaep-nán-yang-ngai

“How do you fold a shirt like that?”

87- Choose 

เลือก (lûueak

Example:  

เธอจะเลือกอันไหน

thooe-jà-lûueak-an-nǎi

“Which one will you choose?”

4. The Verb “To Be” 

Negative Verbs

วิกตรรถกริยา (ví-gà-dtàt-thà-gà-rí-yaa) is the verb “to be” in Thai. To be more specific, it refers to verbs that convey the concept that A is B. Below is a list of Thai “to be” verbs and other verbs that are considered วิกตรรถกริยา (ví-gà-dtàt-thà-gà-rí-yaa).

88-90 – To be

Similar to English, there are three verbs for “to be” in Thai: เป็น (bpen), อยู่ (yhùu), and คือ (kuue).  

  • เป็น (bpen) is used to explain the state or status of the subject, or what the subject is.
  • อยู่ (yhùu) is used to tell the location of the subject.
  • คือ (khuue) is used to explain the state or status of the subject. This is information that the listeners didn’t know before.

Example 1:  

เธอเป็นหมอ

thooe-bpen-mhǎaw

“She is a doctor.”

Example 2:  

ไมโลเป็นหมาพันธุ์ชิวาว่า

mai-loo-bpen-mhǎa-phan-shí-waa-wâa

“Milo is a Chihuahua dog.”

Cute Chihuahua Lying Down

Example 3:  

ของขวัญอยู่บนโต๊ะ

Khǎawng-khwǎn-yhùu-bon-dtóe

“The gift is on the table.”

Example 4:  

ยายอยู่จังหวัดลพบุรี

yaai-yhùu-jang-wàt-lóp-bù-rii

“My grandma is at Lopburi.”

Example 5:  

นี่คืออะไร

nîi-khuue-à-rai

“What is this?”

Example 6:  

นี่คือเครื่องดื่มใหม่ของเรา

nîi-khuue-khrûueang-dùuem-mài-khǎawng-rao

“This is our new drink.”

91- Same as 

เหมือน (mhǔuean

Example:  

สีเสื้อของแม่เหมือนสีเสื้อของฉัน

sǐi-sûuea-khǎawng-mâae-mhǔuean-sǐi-sûuea-khǎawng-chǎn

“The colors of my mother’s t-shirt are the same as mine.”

92- Similar to

คล้าย (kláai

Example:  

ล่อมีลักษณะคล้ายลา แต่ตัวเล็กกว่า

lâaw-mii-lák-sà-nà-khláai-laa dtàae-dtuua-lék-gwàa

“A mule is similar to a donkey, but is smaller.”

93- Equal to

เท่า (thâo

Example:  

หนูตัวนั้นตัวใหญ่มาก ขนาดเกือบเท่าลูกหมา

nǔu-dtuua-nán-dtuua-yhài-mâak khà-nàat-gùueap-thâo-lûuk-mhǎa

“That rat is so big, its size is almost equal to that of a puppy.”

94- As if 

ราวกับ (raao-gàp

Example:  

เธอสวยราวกับนางฟ้า

thooe-sǔuay-raao-gàp-naang-fáa

“She is so beautiful, as if being an angel.”

5. Helping Verbs

กริยานุเคราะห์ (gà-rí-yaa-nú-kráw) is “helping verbs” or “auxiliary verbs” in Thai. Using these is very easy! To put a helping verb in a sentence, you don’t have to change the form of the verb or anything. You just put the helping verb in the right place and that’s it.  Below is a list of Thai auxiliary verbs you should know.

95- Will 

Thai word: จะ (

How to use: จะ () + verb for affirmative sentence; จะ () + ไม่ (mâi) + verb for negative sentence

Example 1:  

ฉันจะไปตลาดน้ำพรุ่งนี้

chǎn-jà-bpai-dtà-làat-nám-phrûng-níi

“I will go to the floating market tomorrow.”

Example 2:  

ฉันจะไม่มาที่นี่อีก

chǎn-jà-mâi-maa-thîi-nîi-ìik

“I will not come back here again.”

Floating Market in Thailand

96- Must

Thai word: ต้อง (dtâawng

How to use: ต้อง (dtâawng) + verb for affirmative sentence; ต้อง (dtâawng) + ไม่ (mâi) + verb for negative sentence

Example 1:  

เธอต้องทำงานให้เสร็จวันนี้

thooe-dtâawng-tham-ngaan-hâi-sèt-wan-níi

“You must finish work today.”

Example 2:  

เด็ก ๆ ต้องไม่พูดคำหยาบ

dèk-dèk-dtâawng-mâi-phûut-kham-yhàap

“Children must not speak rude words.”

97- Should 

Thai word: ควร (khuuan

How to use: ควร (khuuan) + verb for affirmative sentence; ไม่ (mâi) + ควร (khuuan) + verb for negative sentence

Example 1:  

เธอควรใส่กางเกงสีเข้ม ๆ พรุ่งนี้

thooe-khuuan-sài-gaang-geeng-sǐi-khêm-khêm-phrûng-níi

“You should wear dark-colored pants tomorrow.”

Example 2:  

นักเรียนไม่ควรไปโรงเรียนสาย

nák-riian-mâi-khuan-bpai-roong-riian-sǎai

“Students shouldn’t go to school late.”

98- Used to 

Thai word: เคย (khooei)

How to use: เคย (khooei) + verb for affirmative sentence; ไม่ (mâi) + เคย (khooei) + verb for negative sentence

Example 1:  

ฉันเคยขึ้นรถเมล์ไปโรงเรียนด้วยตัวเองทุกวัน

chǎn-khooei-khûn-rót-mee-bpai-roong-riian-dûuai-dtua-eeng-thúk-wan

“I used to go to school by bus everyday by myself.”

Example 2:  

เธอไม่เคยกินอาหารรสเผ็ด

thooe-mâi-khooei-gin-aa-hǎan-rót-phèt

“She isn’t used to spicy food.”

Additional Note: เคย (khooei) can also mean “marine shrimp” in Thai.

She Isn’t Used to Spicy Food.

99- X-ing 

Thai word: กำลัง (gam-lang)

How to use: กำลัง (gam-lang) + verb for affirmative sentence

Explanation: When you put กำลัง (gam-lang) in front of verbs, it’s like you’re changing the sentence from present simple tense to present continuous tense.

Example:  

คุณครูกำลังตรวจการบ้านอยู่

khun-khruu-gam-lang-dtrùuat-gaan-bâan-yhùu

“The teacher is now grading homework.”

Additional Notes

  • Thai people don’t use this helping verb in negative sentences.
  • กำลัง (gam-lang) can also mean “power” in Thai.

100- Passive form of a verb

Thai word: ถูก (thùuk)

How to use: ถูก (thùuk) + verb for affirmative sentence; ไม่ (mâi) + ถูก (thùuk) + verb for negative sentence

Example 1:  

ลุงของฉันถูกหมากัดเมื่อวานนี้

lung-khǎawng-chǎn-thùuk-mhǎa-gàt-mûuea-waan-níi

“My uncle was bitten by a dog yesterday.”

Example 2:  

น้องไม่ถูกแม่ทำโทษ แม้จะทำตัวไม่ดี

náawng-mâi-thùuk-mâae-tham-thôot máae-jà-tham-dtuua-mâi-dii

“My younger sister isn’t punished despite not behaving.”

Additional Note: In addition to being a helping verb, ถูก (thùuk) can also mean “correct” and “cheap” in Thai.

101- Already + verb 

Thai word: แล้ว (láaeo)

How to use: verb + แล้ว (láaeo) for affirmative sentence

Example:  

แม่ทำยำเสร็จแล้ว

mâae-tham-yam-sèt-láaeo

“Mom already finished making spicy salad.”

Additional Note: Thai people don’t use this helping verb in negative sentences.

6. Conclusion

We’re happy to tell you that at this point, you’ve already learned all about basic Thai verbs. What do you think about learning Thai verbs? Was this an easy topic as we told you at the beginning of the lesson, or harder than you expected? Tell us what you think in the comments section!

If you’re in Thailand or becoming more familiar with the Thai language, you’ll be able to memorize and start using these Thai verbs pretty quickly. There are a lot of lessons at ThaiPod101.com to help you master this lesson even faster, such as our Thai verbs page with audio.

And of course, don’t forget to start another new fun Thai lesson at ThaiPod101.com after you finish this one. If you want more information on the parts of speech in Thai, our Thai Nouns, Thai Adjectives, or Thai Pronouns articles may be a good place to start.

Happy Thai learning! 

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Best Guide for Learning Pronouns in Thai

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Ann is learning Thai. Ann wants to be able to speak Thai fluently. So Ann reads Thai books everyday.  

Does this sound weird? That’s because these sentences lack pronouns. Yes, you guessed it correctly, this lesson will teach you about pronouns in the  Thai language and how to use them.  

The pronoun is another basic component of grammar you have to learn if you want to master any language.  Thus, if you’re learning Thai, you’ll need to know Thai pronouns in order to speak like a native.

Before we start learning Thai pronouns, you should know what a pronoun is in the Thai language first.  คำสรรพนาม (kham-sàp-phá-naam) is “pronoun” in Thai. Grammatically, Thai has six types of pronouns. Some of these have English equivalents, while some are totally different. Of course, we’ll be covering all of these Thai language pronouns.

In this article, you’ll get to learn Thai pronouns inside and out. We’ll cover everything you should know about Thai pronouns in each category. These include:

  • Thai personal pronouns
  • Thai possessive pronouns
  • Thai demonstrative pronouns
  • Thai interrogative pronouns
  • Thai indefinite pronouns
  • Thai relative pronouns

We’ve prepared a list of these Thai pronouns with examples, and will also cover the Thai pronoun system. 

Are you ready? Let’s get started.

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Thai Table of Contents
  1. Thai Personal Pronouns
  2. Thai Demonstrative Pronouns
  3. Thai Interrogative Pronouns
  4. Thai Indefinite Pronouns
  5. Thai Relative Pronouns
  6. วิภาคสรรพนาม
  7. Conclusion

1. Thai Personal Pronouns

Let’s start with Thai personal pronouns, which are called บุรุษสรรพนาม (bù-rùt sàp-phá-naam) in Thai. This part isn’t very hard as the words here are very similar to those in English. The only difference is that in Thai, there are levels of formality, meaning that each English pronoun may have many equivalents in Thai.  

1- Basic information about Thai personal pronouns

  • Thai subject pronouns and Thai object pronouns are the same. You must remember all of these as they’re part of the possessive and reflexive pronouns.
  • Unlike in the English language, there are some subject and object pronouns for “I” and “you” that are gender-specific.
  • For Thai possessive pronouns, the way to remember is: “ของ (khǎawng) + subject/object pronouns.” The usage of this is: “noun + possessive pronoun.”
  • For Thai reflexive pronouns, the way to remember is: “ตัว (dtuua) + subject/object pronouns.” The usage of this is: “ด้วย (dûuai) + reflexive pronoun + เอง (eeng).”

The table below shows the personal pronouns in English and Thai.


Thai subject pronouns
Thai object pronouns
Thai possessive pronounsThai reflexive pronouns
Noun + ของ (khǎawng) + subject/object pronounsด้วย (dûuai) + ตัว (dtuua) + subject/object pronouns + เอง (eeng)
I / Me / My / Myself
ข้าพเจ้า (khâa-phá-jâo)
ดิฉัน (dì-chǎn)
ฉัน (chǎn)
, ผม (phǒm)
กู (guu)
ของข้าพเจ้า (khǎawng khâa-phá-jâo)
ของดิฉัน (khǎawng dì-chǎn)
ของฉัน (khǎawng chǎn)
ของผม (khǎawng phǒm)
ของกู (khǎawng guu)
ตัวข้าพเจ้า (dtuua khâa-phá-jâo)
ตัวดิฉัน (dtuua dì-chǎn)
ตัวฉัน (dtuua chǎn)
ตัวผม (dtuua phǒm)
ตัวกู (dtuua guu)
You / Your / Yourself
ท่าน (thâan)
คุณ (khun)
เธอ (thooe), นาย (naai)
มึง (mueng)
ของท่าน (khǎawng thâan)
ของคุณ (khǎawng khun)
ของเธอ (khǎawng thooe)
ของนาย (khǎawng naai)
ของมึง (khǎawng mueng)
ของท่าน (khǎawng thâan)
ของคุณ (khǎawng khun)
ของเธอ (khǎawng thooe)
ของนาย (khǎawng naai)
ของมึง (khǎawng mueng)
We / Us / Our / Ourselves
เรา (rao)
พวกเรา (phûuak rao)
พวกกู (phûuak guu)
ของเรา (khǎawng rao)
ของพวกเรา (khǎawngphûuak rao)
ของพวกกู (khǎawngphûuak guu)
ตัวเรา (dtuua rao)
ตัวพวกเรา (dtuuaphûuak rao)
ตัวพวกกู (dtuuaphûuak guu)
They / Them / Their / Themselves
พวกท่าน (phûuak thâan)
พวกเขา (phûuak khǎo)
พวกมัน (phûuak man)
ของพวกท่าน (khǎawngphûuak thâan)
ของพวกเขา (khǎawngphûuak khǎo)
ของพวกมัน (khǎawngphûuak man)
ตัวพวกท่าน (dtuuaphûuak thâan)
ตัวพวกเขา (dtuuaphûuak khǎo)
ตัวพวกมัน (dtuuaphûuak man)
He / Him / His / Himself
เขา (khǎo)ของเขา (khǎawng khǎo)ตัวเขา (dtuua khǎo)
She / Her / Herself
เธอ (thooe)
หล่อน (lhàawn)
ของเธอ (khǎawng thooe)
ของหล่อน (khǎawng làawn)
ตัวเธอ (dtuua thooe)
ตัวหล่อน (dtuua làawn)
It / Its / Itself
มัน (man)ของมัน (khǎawng man)ตัวมัน (dtuua man)ดิฉัน (dì-chǎn)
ฉัน (chǎn

* The pronouns in the table above are listed by level of formality. The first/top pronoun in each list is the most formal one, while the last/lowest one is the most informal.

** The pronouns in orange are feminine pronouns in Thai.

*** The pronouns in green are masculine pronouns in Thai.

2- I / Me / My / Myself 

Introducing Yourself

ข้าพเจ้า (khâa-phá-jâo

ข้าพเจ้า (khâa-phá-jâo) is the most formal singular pronoun that means “I” in Thai. It can be used for both males and females. For speaking, Thai people only use this word in very formal situations, such as taking an oath in an important ceremony. However, you can find it a lot in writing, especially in autobiographies.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of ข้าพเจ้า (khâa-phá-jâo), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of ข้าพเจ้า (khâa-phá-jâo), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

เมื่อข้าพเจ้ายังเป็นเด็ก  ข้าพเจ้าพูดอย่างเด็ก

mûuea khâa-phá-jâo yang bpen dèk  khâa-phá-jâo phûut yàang dèk

“When I was a child, I spoke like a child.”

Example 2:  

นั่นคือหนังสือของข้าพเจ้า

nân khuue nǎang-sǔue khǎawng khâa-phá-jâo

“That is my book.”

Example 3:  

ข้าพเจ้าเขียนหนังสือทั้งเล่มนี้ด้วยตัวของข้าพเจ้าเอง

khâa-phá-jâo khǐian nǎng-sǔue tháng lêm níi dûuai dtuua khâawng khâa-phá-jâo eeng

“I wrote the entire book on my own.”

This Is My Book.

ดิฉัน (dì-chǎn)

ดิฉัน (dì-chǎn) is another formal pronoun in Thai. However, it’s not as formal as ข้าพเจ้า (khâa-phá-jâo), and is only used for females. Thai people use this pronoun in formal daily conversations, such as in business-related situations.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of ดิฉัน (dì-chǎn), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of ดิฉัน (dì-chǎn), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

ดิฉันไม่รับข้อเสนอนี้ค่ะ

dì-chǎn mâi ráp khâaw sà-nǒoe níi khâ

“I decline this offer.”

Example 2:  

คุณแม่เพิ่งซักเสื้อของดิฉันไปค่ะ

khun mâae phôoeng sák sûuea khǎawng dì-chan bpai khâ

“My mother just washed my shirt.”

Example 3:  

เดี๋ยวดิฉันจะตรวจสัญญาด้วยตัวดิฉันเองอีกทีค่ะ

dǐiao dì-chǎn jà dtrùuat sǎn-yaa dûuai dtua eeng ìik thii khâ

“I will check the contract by myself again.”

ฉัน (chǎn)

ฉัน (chǎn) is probably the pronoun that females use the most. It can be used in casual and not very formal daily conversations.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of ฉัน (chǎn), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of ฉัน (chǎn), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

ฉันชอบสีเแดงมาก

chǎn châawp sǐi daaeng mâak

“I like the color red a lot.”

Example 2:  

ห้ามจับรูปของฉัน

hâam jàp rûup khǎawng chǎn

“Don’t touch my picture.”

Example 3:  

ฉันทำขนมหวานด้วยตัวฉันเอง

chǎn tham khà-nǒm wǎan dûuai dtuua khǎawng chǎn eeng

“I made this dessert by myself.”

ผม (phǒm)

ผม (phǒm) is a masculine pronoun, and it can be used in both formal situations and casual situations.  

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of ผม (phǒm), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of ผม (phǒm), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

ผมจะไปชะอำพรุ่งนี้

phǒm jà bpai chá-am phrûng-níi

“I will go to Chaam tomorrow.”

Example 2:  

ทีวีของผมเพิ่งเสียไป

thii-wii khǎawng phǒm phôoeng sǐia bpai

“My TV just broke.”

Example 3:  

ผมจะทำด้วยตัวผมเอง

phǒm jà tham dûuai dtuua phǒm eeng

“I will do it by myself.”

กู (guu)

กู (guu) is considered a rude pronoun to use, and you mustn’t use it in formal conversations. Close friends often use this pronoun when talking to each other. It can be used for both males and females.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of กู (guu), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of กู (guu), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

กูไม่ไป

guu mâi bpai

“I won’t go.”

Example 2:  

นี่มันเรื่องของกู  อย่ามายุ่ง

nîi man rûueang khǎawng guu  yàa maa yûng

“This is my business. Don’t stick your nose in.”

Example 3:  

รูปนั้นกูวาดด้วยตัวกูเอง สวยมั๊ย

rûup nán guu wâat dûuai dtuua guu eeng sǔuai mái

“I drew that picture by myself. Is it beautiful?”

3- You / Your / Yourself 

ท่าน (thâan)

ท่าน (thâan) is used with people you respect. Thai people don’t use this pronoun very much in daily life.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of ท่าน (thâan), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of ท่าน (thâan), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

ท่านต้องการอะไร

thâan dtâawng-gaan à-rai

“What do you want?”

Example 2:  

รถของท่านราคาแพงมากมั๊ย

rót khǎawng thâan raa-khaa phaaeng mâak mái

“Is your car very expensive?”

Example 3:  

ท่านทำอาหารให้หลานด้วยตัวท่านเองรึเปล่า

thâan tham aa-hǎan hâi lǎan dûuai dtuua thâan eeng rúe bplào

“Do you cook for your grandchild by yourself?”

คุณ (khun)

คุณ (khun) is used often in daily life. Thai people use this pronoun in formal situations, especially those related to business. 

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of คุณ (khun), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of คุณ (khun), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

คุณอายุเท่าไหร่แล้ว

khun aa-yú thâo-rài láaeo

How old are you?

Example 2:  

ขอดูกระเป๋าของคุณหน่อยค่ะ

khǎaw duu grà-bpǎo khǎawng khun nàauy khâ

“Let me check your bag.”

Example 3:  

คุณหิ้วกล่องนี้ด้วยตัวคุณเองได้มั๊ย

khun hîu glàawng níi dûuai dtuua khun eeng dâi mái

“Can you carry this box by yourself?”

เธอ (thooe)

เธอ (thooe) is used as a feminine pronoun only. It’s often used in casual conversations, or when older people are referring to a woman who’s younger than them.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of เธอ (thooe), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of เธอ (thooe), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

เธอจะกินข้าวเที่ยงด้วยกันมั๊ย

thooe jà gin khâao thîiang dûuai gan mái

“Do you want to have lunch with me?”

Example 2:  

ฉันว่าเสื้อของเธอไม่สวยเลย

chǎn wâa sûuea khǎawng thooe mâi sǔuai looei

“I think your shirt is not beautiful.”

Example 3:  

เธอต้องทำการบ้านด้วยตัวเธอเองนะ

thooe dtâawng tham gaan-baan dûuai dtuua thooe eeng ná

“You have to do homework by yourself.”

นาย (naai

นาย (naai) is used as a masculine pronoun only. It’s often used in casual conversations, or when older people are referring to a man who’s younger than them.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of นาย (naai), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of นาย (naai), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

นายดูเหนื่อย ๆ นะ

naai duu nùueai nùueai ná

“You look tired.”

Example 2:  

การบ้านของนายทำเสร็จรึยัง

gaan-bâan khǎawng naai tham sèt rúe yang

“Have you finished your homework?”

Example 3:  

นายทำรายงานเล่มนี้ด้วยตัวนายเองรึเปล่า

naai tham raai-ngaan lêm níi dûuai dtuua naai eeng rúe bplào

“Did you write this report by yourself?”

มึง (mueng

มึง (mueng) is considered a rude pronoun to use, and you mustn’t use it in formal conversations. Close friends often use this pronoun when talking to each other. It can be used with both males and females.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of มึง (mueng), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of มึง (mueng), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

มึงเดินระวังนะ

mueng dooen rá-wang ná

“You should walk carefully.”

Example 2:  

อันนั้นรถของมึงใช่มั๊ย

an nán rót khǎawng mueng châi mái

“Is that your car?”

Example 3:  

ไหนมึงบอกว่ามึงทำด้วยตัวมึงเองไง

nǎi mueng bàawk wâa mueng tham dûuai dtuua mueng eeng ngai

“You told me you did this by yourself.”

4- We / Us / Our / Ourselves 

เรา (rao) / พวกเรา (phûuak rao

เรา (rao) and พวกเรา (phûuak rao) are pronouns used to refer to a group of people. They can be used in both formal and informal situations. เรา (rao) and พวกเรา (phûuak rao) are pretty much the same and are completely interchangeable. 

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of เรา (rao) or พวกเรา (phûuak rao), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of เรา (rao) or พวกเรา (phûuak rao), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

เรา (พวกเรา)ไม่ต้องการความช่วยเหลือของคุณ

rao (phûuak rao) mâi dtâawng-gaan khwaam chûuai-lǔuea khǎawng khun

“We don’t need your help.”

Example 2:  

นี่คืองานของเรา (พวกเรา)

nîi khuue ngaan khǎawng rao (phûuak rao) 

“This is our job.”

Example 3:  

เราทำสวนนี้ด้วยตัวเรา (พวกเรา)เอง

rao tham sǔuan níi dûuai dtuua khǎawng rao (phûuak rao) eeng

“We do this garden by ourselves.”

Woman Gardening

พวกกู (phûuak guu)

พวกกู (phûuak guu) is another pronoun that’s used to refer to a group of people. However, it’s considered to be impolite, and you mustn’t use this pronoun in formal situations.  

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of พวกกู (phûuak guu), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of พวกกู (phûuak guu), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

พวกกูไม่อยากขายบ้านหลังนี้

phûuak guu mâi yàak khǎai bâan lǎng níi

“We don’t want to sell this house.”

Example 2:  

ร้านนี้คือร้านของพวกกู

ráan níi khuue ráan khǎawng phûuak guu

“This is our shop.”

Example 3:  

พวกกูบริหารร้านนี้ด้วยตัวพวกกูเอง

phûuak guu baaw-rí-hǎan ráan níi dûuai dtuua phûuak guu eeng

“We run this shop by ourselves.”

5- They / Them / Their / Themselves

พวกท่าน (phûuak thâan)

พวกท่าน (phûuak thâan) is a pronoun that’s used to refer to a group of people whom you respect. Thai people normally use this pronoun in formal situations.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of พวกกู (phûuak thâan), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of พวกกู (phûuak thâan), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

พวกท่านได้รับเชิญไปที่ห้องอาหารเวลา 18.00 นาฬิกา

phûuak thâan dâi ráp chooen bpai thîi hâawng aa-hǎan wee-laa sìp bpàaet na-lí-gaa khâ

“They invited you to go to the dining room at six p.m.”

Example 2:  

โต๊ะของพวกท่านอยู่ด้านนู้นค่ะ

dtó khǎawng phûuak thâan yùu dâan núun khâ

“Their table is over there.”

Example 3:  

พวกท่านสามารถกดสั่งอาหารผ่านแทบเล็ตด้วยตัวพวกท่านเองได้

phûuak thâan sǎa-mâat gòt sàng aa-hǎan phàan tháp-lèt dûuai dtuua phûuak thâan eeng dâi

“They can order using this tablet by themselves.”

พวกเขา (phûuak khǎo

พวกเขา (phûuak khǎo) is a pronoun that can be used in situations that are casual or not very formal.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of พวกเขา (phûuak khǎo), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of พวกเขา (phûuak khǎo), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

พวกเขาชอบกีฬาฟุตบอล

phûuak khǎo châawp gii-laa fút-baawn

“They like football.”

Example 2:  

เสื้อทีมของพวกเขาอยู่ที่ไหน

sûuea thiim khǎawng phûuak khǎo yùu thîi nǎi

“Where are their team t-shirts?”

Example 3:  

พวกเขาสามารถฝึกซ้อมด้วยตัวพวกเขาเองได้

phûuak khǎo sǎa-mâat fùek sáawm dûuai dtuua khǎawng phûuak khǎo eeng dâi

“They can practice by themselves.”

พวกมัน (phûuak man)

พวกมัน (phûuak man) is a pronoun that’s used to refer to animals and plants in Thai.  

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of พวกมัน (phûuak man), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of พวกมัน (phûuak man), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

แม่เลี้ยงกระต่ายไว้หลายตัว พวกมันน่ารักมาก

mâae líiang grà-dtàai wái lǎai dtuua phûuak man nâa rák mâak

“Mom has many rabbits. They are very cute.”

Example 2:  

อาหารของพวกมันอยู่ในกล่องนั้น

aa-hǎan khǎawng phûuak man yùu nai glàawng nán

“Their food is in that box.”

Example 3:  

พวกมันหาอาหารกินด้วยตัวของพวกมันเองไม่ได้

phûuak man hǎa aa-hǎan gin dûuai dtuua khǎawng man eeng mâi dâi

“They can’t find food by themselves.”

6- He / Him / His / Himself 

เขา (khǎo)

เขา (khǎo) is a masculine Thai language pronoun. It can be used in both formal and informal situations.  

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of เขา (khǎo), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of เขา (khǎo), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

เขาทำอาหารอร่อยมาก

khǎo tham aa-hǎan à-ràauy mâak

“He is very good at cooking.”

Example 2:  

อาหารของเขามักมีสีสันสวยงาม

aa-hǎan khǎawng khǎo mák mii sǐi-sǎn sǔuai ngaam

“Their food is in that box.”

Example 3:  

เขาสามารถทำอาหารด้วยตัวเขาเองภายใน 10 นาที

khǎo sǎa-mâat tham aa-hǎan dûuai dtuua eeng phaai nai sìp naa-thii

“He can cook by himself within ten minutes.”

7- She / Her / Herself 

เธอ (thooe)

เธอ (thooe) is a common feminine pronoun, and it can be used in both formal and informal situations. 

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of เธอ (thooe), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of เธอ (thooe), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

เธอพูดได้ 3 ภาษา

thooe phûut dâi sǎam phaa-sǎa

“She can speak three languages.”

Example 2:  

สำเนียงของเธอดีมาก

sǎm-niiang khǎawng thooe dii mâak

“Her accent is very good.”

Example 3:  

เธอสามารถไปเที่ยวต่างประเทศด้วยตัวเธอเองได้

thooe sǎa-mâat bpai thîiao dtàang bprà-thêet dûuai dtuua eeng dâi

“She can travel abroad by herself.”

หล่อน (làawn)

หล่อน (làawn) is another feminine pronoun in Thai. However, Thai people don’t use this word much nowadays;  you’re more likely to hear this word in period dramas. Compared to เธอ (thooe), หล่อน (làawn) is more casual.  Thus, this pronoun is used in informal situations.

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of หล่อน (làawn), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of หล่อน (làawn), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

หล่อนกำลังทำอะไรอยู่

làawn gam-lang tham à-rai yùu

“What is she doing now?”

Example 2:  

หล่อนกำลังเลี้ยงลูกของหล่อน

làawn gam-lang líiang lûuk khǎawng làawn

“She is taking care of her baby.”

Example 3:  

หล่อนเลี้ยงลูกด้วยตัวหล่อนเอง  ไม่มีคนช่วย

làawng líiang lûuk dûuai dtuua làawn eeng mâi mii khon chûuai

“She raises her baby by herself with no help from others.”

8- It / Its / Itself 

มัน (man)

มัน (man) is a pronoun that’s used to refer to animals or plants in Thai.  

Once you put ของ (khǎawng) in front of มัน (man), you get a possessive pronoun. And once you put ตัว (dtuua) in front of มัน (man), you get a reflexive pronoun.

Example 1:  

บ้านฉันเลี้ยงสุนัขไว้ 1 ตัว มันแก่มากแล้ว

bâan chǎn líiang sù-nák wái nùeng dtuua man gàae mâak láaeo

“Our family has one dog. It is very old now.”

Example 2:  

บ้านของมันอยู่ในสวน

bâan khǎawng man yùu nai sǔuan

“Its house is in the garden.”

Example 3:  

เพราะมันแก่มากแล้ว  มันเลยทำอะไรด้วยตัวมันเองไม่ได้

phráw man gàae mâak láaeo man looei tham à-rai dûuai dtuua man eeng mâi dâi

“Because it is very old, it can’t do much by itself.”

Girl Hugging Dog

2. Thai Demonstrative Pronouns

Another type of pronoun in Thai is the demonstrative pronoun, which is called นิยมสรรพนาม (ní-yá-má-sàp-phá-naam). Demonstrative pronouns are especially helpful for those just starting to learn Thai. Understanding this aspect of Thai grammar will help you communicate effectively, even if you don’t know the names of certain objects. 

1- This 

Thai pronoun: นี่ (nîi)

Explanation: This pronoun is used to refer to a single noun that’s near the speaker. 

Example:  

นี่คือสินค้าตัวใหม่

nîi khuue sǐn-kháa dtuua mài

“This is a new product.”

2- That 

Thai pronoun: นั่น (nân) / โน่น (nôon)

Explanation: นั่น (nan) is used to refer to a single noun that’s far from the speaker, but close to the listener. โน่น (nôon) is used to refer to a single noun that’s far from both the speaker and the listener.

Example 1:  

นั่นคืออะไร

nân khuue à-rai

“What is that?”

Example 2:  

โน่นคือเสื้อผ้าของแม่

nôon khuue sûuea-phâa khǎawng mâae

“That is Mother’s clothing.”

3- These 

Thai pronoun: พวกนี้ (phûuak níi)

Explanation: This pronoun is used to refer to a plural noun that’s near the speaker.

Example:  

จะให้เอาพวกนี้วางไว้ตรงไหน

jà hâi ao phûuak níi waang wái dtrong nǎi

“Where do you want me to put these?”

4- Those

Thai pronoun: พวกนั้น (phûuak nán) / พวกโน้น (phûuak nóon)

Explanation: พวกนั้น (phûuak nán) is used to refer to a plural noun that’s far from the speaker, but close to the listener. พวกโน้น (phûuak nóon) is used to refer to a plural noun that’s far from both the speaker and the listener.

Example 1:  

คนพวกนั้นมาทำอะไรที่นี่

khon phûuak nán maa tham à-rai thîi nîi

“What are those people doing here?”

Example 2:  

คนพวกโน้นกำลังทำงานอยู่

khon phûuak nóon gam-lang tham ngaan yùu

“Those people are working.”

5- Here 

Thai pronoun: ที่นี่ (thii níi)

Example:  

วางไว้ที่นี่

waang wái thîi nîi

“Put it here.”

6- There

Thai pronoun: ตรงนั้น (dtrong nán) / ตรงโน้น (dtrong nóon)

Explanation: ตรงนั้น (dtrong nán) is used to refer to an area that’s far from the speaker, but close to the listener. ตรงโน้น (dtrong nóon) is used to refer to an area that’s far from both the speaker and the listener.

Example 1:  

ตรงนั้นเกิดอะไรขึ้น

dtrong nán gòoet à-rai khûen

“What is happening there?”

Example 2:  

เธอกำลังซักผ้าอยู่ตรงโน้น

thooe gam-lang sák phâa yhùu dtrong nóon

“She is washing clothes over there.”

3. Thai Interrogative Pronouns

Basic Questions

Thai interrogative pronouns, called ปฤจฉาสรรพนาม (phrùt-chǎa-sàp-phá-naam), are another pronoun type you have to learn about. These are also known as “question words” because they’re most often used when asking questions.

1- Who and Whom

Thai pronoun: ใคร (khrai)

Explanation: ใคร (khrai) is a pronoun that’s used to inquire about a person (or people). ใคร (khrai) can be both a subject and object pronoun.  

Example:  

ใครเป็นคนวาดรูปนี้

khrai bpen khon wâat rûup níi

“Who drew this picture?”

2- Whose 

Thai pronoun: ของใคร (khǎawng khrai)

Explanation: ของใคร (khǎawng khrai) is a pronoun that inquires about the ownership of a certain noun.

Example:  

กระเป๋าใบนี้เป็นของใคร

grà-bpǎo bai níi bpen khǎawng khrai

“Whose bag is this?”

3- What

Thai pronoun: อะไร (à-rai)

Explanation: อะไร (à-rai) is a pronoun that inquires about the name, definition, or description of an object.

Example:  

นี่คืออะไร

nîi khuue à-rai

“What is this?”

4- Which

Thai pronoun: อันไหน (an nǎi) / คนไหน (khon nǎi)

Explanation: อันไหน (an nǎi) is a pronoun that’s used to ask another party to choose one object out of two or more available ones. คนไหน (khon nǎi) is a pronoun that’s used to ask another party to choose one person out of two or more people.

Example 1:  

เธอจะเอาอันไหน

thooe jà ao an nǎi

“Which one do you want?”

Example 2:  

คนไหนจะเป็นคนถูบ้าน เอหรือบี

khon nǎi jà bpen khon thǔu bâan ee rǔue bii

“Which person will mop the house? A or B?”

5- Where

Thai pronoun: ที่ไหน (thîi nǎi)

Explanation: ที่ไหน (thîi nǎi) is a pronoun that inquires about place or location. 

Example

บ้านของเธออยู่ที่ไหน

bâan khǎawng thooe yùu thîi nǎi

“Where is your house?”

6- When 

Thai pronoun: เมื่อไหร่ (mûuea-rài)

Explanation: เมื่อไหร่ (mûuea-rài) is a pronoun that inquires about time.

Example:  

เธอจะมาถึงเมื่อไหร่

thooe jà maa thǔeng mûuea-rài

“When will you arrive?”

7- Why 

Thai pronoun: ทำไม (tham-mai)

Explanation: ทำไม (tham-mai) is a pronoun that’s used to inquire about a reason something happened.

Example:  

เธอซื้อทีวีใหม่ทำไม เครื่องเก่าก็ยังดูได้

thooe súue thii-wii mài tham-mai khrûueang gào gâaw yang chái dâi

“Why did you buy a new TV? Your old one is still fine.”

4. Thai Indefinite Pronouns

อนิยมสรรพนาม (à-ní-yá-má-sàp-phá-naam) is “indefinite pronoun” in Thai. You may notice that some of these pronouns are the same as Thai interrogative pronouns; however, the way to use them is different. These Thai indefinite pronouns are used in declarative sentences, not in questions. 

1- Anyone and Anybody 

Thai pronoun: ใคร (khrai)

Explanation: You can use this as both a subject and object pronoun. It’s used to refer to an unspecified person in a declarative sentence.  

Example:  

ใครก็ทำได้ ง่ายแค่นี้เอง

khrai gâaw tham dâi ngâai khâae níi eeng

“Anyone and anybody can do this, it is this easy.”

2- Anything 

Thai pronoun: อะไร (à-rai)

Explanation: This pronoun is used to refer to an unspecified object in a declarative sentence.  

Example:  

ฉันกินอะไรก็ได้

chǎn gin à-rai gâaw dâi

“I can eat anything.”

3- Anywhere 

Thai pronoun: ที่ไหน (thîi nǎi)

Explanation: It’s used to refer to an unspecified place in a declarative sentence.  

Example:  

ฉันไปเป็นผู้ใหญ่แล้ว จะไปที่ไหนก็ได้

chǎn bpen phûu-yài láaeo jà bpai thîi nǎi gâaw dâi

“I’m an adult now. I can go anywhere.”

5. Thai Relative Pronouns

ประพันธสรรพนาม (phra-phan-tha-sap-pha-naam) is “relative pronoun” in Thai. This type of pronoun is used to do two things in a sentence: 1) Replace the noun in the first sentence, and 2) Link two sentences together. 

In English, relative pronouns are “which,” “where,” “who,” “whom,” and “whose,” depending on the noun.  However, in the Thai language, ที่ (thîi) can be used for all types of nouns. Below are some examples:

Example 1:  

ฉันชอบอาหารที่มีรสหวาน

chǎn châawp aa-hǎan thîi mii rót wǎan

“I like food which is sweet.”

  • ฉันชอบอาหาร (chǎn châawp aa-hǎan) = “I like food.”
  • อาหารมีรสหวาน (aa-hǎan mii rót wǎan) = “Food is sweet.”
I Like Food Which Is Sweet.

Example 2:  

แม่ชอบสถานที่ที่อากาศดี

mâae châawp sà-thǎan-thîi thîi aa-gàat dii

“Mom likes a place where the weather is good.”

  • แม่ชอบสถานที่ (mâae châawp sà-thǎan-thîi) = “Mom likes a place.”
  • สถานที่อากาศดี (sà-thǎan-thîi aa-gàat dii) = “Place has good weather.”

Example 3:  

พ่อชอบลูกน้องที่ขยัน

phâaw châawp lûuk-náawng thîi khà-yǎn

“Dad likes staff (members) who are hardworking.”

  • พ่อชอบลูกน้อง (phâaw châawp lûuk-náawng) = “Dad likes staff (members).”
  • ลูกน้องขยัน (lûuk-náawng khà-yǎn) = “Staff (members) are hardworking.”

Example 4:  

น้องชอบนักร้องที่ฉันชอบเหมือนกัน

náawng châawp nák-ráawng thîi chǎn châawp mǔuean gan

“My sister likes a singer whom I also like.”

  • น้องชอบนักร้อง (náawng châawp nák-ráawng) = “My sister likes a singer.”
  • ฉันชอบนักร้อง (chǎn châawp nák-ráawng) = “I like a singer.”

Example 5:  

เจ้านายเลือกผู้หญิงที่ลายมือสวยมาเป็นเลขา

jâo-naai lûueak phûu-yǐng thîi laai-muue sǔuai maa bpen lee-khǎa

“The boss chose a woman whose handwriting is good to be his secretary.”

  • เจ้านายเลือกผู้หญิงมาเป็นเลขา (jâao-naai lûueak phûu-yǐng maa bpen lee-khǎa) = “The boss chose a woman to be his secretary.”
  • ผู้หญิงลายมือสวย (phûu-yǐng laai-muue sǔuai) = “Woman has good handwriting.”

Actually, there are two other pronouns in this group, which are ซึ่ง (sûeng) and อัน (an). However, Thai people rarely use these words nowadays.

6. วิภาคสรรพนาม 

วิภาคสรรพนาม (ví-phâak-sàp-phá-naam) is the last type of pronoun in Thai, and is actually unique to the Thai language. These pronouns are used to show that the individual components of one noun group do the same (or different) things as each other. This may sound a bit confusing now, but the explanations and examples below should clarify this for you. 

1- ต่าง

Thai pronunciation: dtàang

How to use: This pronoun is used when people in the same group do different things. To use it, put ต่าง (dtàang) after the subject.

Example:  

นักเรียนต่างทำงานในส่วนของตนเองอย่างขยัน

nák-riian dtàang tham ngaan nai sùuan khǎawng dton eeng yàang khà-yǎn

“Each of the students does their part of the work diligently.”

2- บ้าง

Thai pronunciation: bâang

How to use: This pronoun is used when people in the same group do a few different activities. To use it, put บ้าง (bâang) after the subject of the first sentence; for the following sentence, you use บ้าง (bâang) instead of the subject.

Example:  

นักเรียนบ้างก็เล่นกับเพื่อน บ้างก็กินขนมในเวลาพัก

nák-riian bâang gâaw lêen gàp phûuean bâang gâaw gin khà-nǒm nai wee-laa phák

“Some students play with their friends while some students eat snacks during the break.”

  • นักเรียนเล่นกับเพื่อนในเวลาพัก (nák-riian lêen gàp phûuean nai wee-laa phák) = “Students play with their friends during the break.”
  • นักเรียนกินขนมในเวลาพัก (nák-riian gâaw gin khà-nǒm nai wee-laa phák) = “Students eat snacks during the break.”

3- กัน

Thai pronunciation: gan

How to use: This pronoun is used when people in the same group do the same activities together. To use it, put กัน (gan) after the verb.

Example:  

นักเรียนช่วยกันทำความสะอาดห้องเรียน

nák-riian chûuai gan tham khwaam sà-àat hâawng riian

“Students clean the classroom together.”

7. Conclusion

Improve Listening

Congratulations on reaching the conclusion. That means you’ve already learned everything about Thai pronouns. 

Did you find it hard, or are Thai pronouns similar to those in your language? What do you think about this lesson? Please leave a comment below to let us know!

You may find it difficult to remember everything in this Thai pronouns list. Still, since you’ve learned about these pronouns with their Thai pronunciation, you should go back and try to pronounce them throughout the lesson. Saying the words out loud often will help you remember them better. Anyway, we encourage you to keep practicing this lesson. Pronouns are a basic and important part of the Thai language, so you need to know them. Learning Thai pronouns can be hard, but don’t give up.

What should you learn next? Visit ThaiPod101.com to choose your next lesson. There are various lessons on interesting topics you can choose to explore. Since you’ve already learned about pronouns in this lesson, you may want to try 100 Adjectives and 100 Nouns.

Happy Thai learning, and good luck!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Thai

Master Thai Word Order and Sentence Structure

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Is Thai an SVO language like English? Or maybe an SOV language? 

Yes, you guessed it correctly. This lesson is about sentence structure in Thai. 

As a Thai learner, it’s important to know how to use proper Thai word order in sentences so that you can communicate like a native. Whether you’re a beginner or have been learning Thai for some time now, this is the perfect beginner guide to Thai sentence structure.

In this lesson, you’ll learn about word order in Thai and how to form sentences. We’ll start with basic information about how words are ordered, followed by four types of sentence structures in Thai grammar. You’ll also get to learn about Thai language word order with modifiers and how to transform sentences into yes-or-no questions. And at the end of this lesson, to ensure that you understand everything, we’ve included some word order practice for you.  

Let’s start!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Thai Table of Contents
  1. Overview of Thai Word Order
  2. ประโยคประธาน
  3. ประโยคกริยา
  4. ประโยคกรรม
  5. ประโยคการิต
  6. Word Order with Modifiers
  7. Yes-No Questions
  8. Sentence Structure in Thai Tutorial
  9. Conclusion

1. Overview of Thai Word Order

Improve Pronunciation

Let’s start the lesson by learning about the very basics of Thai language word order. Basically, the pattern is subject + verb + object.  However, there are also exceptions, and it would be easier to learn the four types of sentences.

1 – Types of Thai Sentence Structures

There are four types of Thai sentence structures, categorized by word order as shown below:

1. ประโยคประธาน (bprà-yòok-bprà-thaan) — sentence that starts with the subject

2. ประโยคกริยา (bprà-yòok-gà-rí-yaa) — sentence that starts with the verb

3. ประโยคกรรม (bprà-yòok-gam) — sentence that starts with the object

4. ประโยคการิต (bprà-yòok-gaa-rít) — sentence with relative clause of the object

We’ll explain these Thai language sentence structure variations in more detail a little bit later.

2 – Difference Between Thai Word Order and English Word Order

Now we’ll discuss the difference between Thai language word order and that of English. There are a few key differences that you should know.

  • Word order in questions: For questions, you have to change the order of the subject and verb in English. However, the sentence structure for Thai questions is pretty much the same as that of affirmative sentences.  
  • Auxiliary verb: In English sentence structure, an auxiliary verb is always put in front of the verb. But in Thai, the auxiliary verb can be put either before or after the verb.  
  • Modifier: Modifiers in Thai are often put after the noun that’s modified.

Because of these differences, you can’t directly translate Thai to English or vice-versa.

2. ประโยคประธาน

Explanation: ประโยคประธาน (bprà-yòok-bprà-thaan) is the type of sentence that starts with the subject.  

Thai affirmative sentence structure: subject + verb + object (if any)

Thai negative sentence structure: subject + ไม่ (mâi) + verb + object (if any)

Compared to English: This type of sentence is the same as the active form of sentences in English.  

Example 1:  

น้องสาวของฉันเล่นเปียโนทุกวัน

náawng-sǎao-khǎawng-chǎn-lên-bpiia-noo-thúk-wan“My younger sister plays piano everyday.”

SubjectVerbObject
พี่สาวของฉัน 
(phîi-sǎao-khǎawng-chǎn)
My older sister
เล่น
(lên)
plays
เปียโน
(bpiia-noo)
piano
My Younger Sister Plays Piano Everyday.

Example 2:  

นักฟุตบอลคนนั้นวิ่งเร็วมาก

nák-fút-baawn-khon-nán-wîng-reo-mâak“That football player runs very fast.”

SubjectVerbObject
นักฟุตบอล 
(nák-fút-baawn)
Football player
วิ่ง
(wîng)
runs

Example 3:  

คุณครูไม่ตรวจการบ้านตอนเช้า

khun-khruu-mâi-dtrùuat-gaan-bâan-dtaawn-cháo“The teacher doesn’t check the homework in the morning.”

SubjectVerbObject
คุณครู 
(khun-khruu)
Teacher
ไม่ตรวจ
(mâi-dtrùuat)
doesn’t check
การบ้าน
(gaan-bâan)
homework

3. ประโยคกริยา

Explanation: ประโยคกริยา (bprà-yòok-gà-rí-yaa) is the type of sentence that starts with the verb. In Thai, there are only three verbs that can be used to start a sentence. Those verbs are มี (mii), เกิด (gòoet), and ปรากฏ (bpraa-gòt), which mean “there is” or “there are” in Thai. However, nowadays, Thai people rarely use ปรากฎ (bpraa-gòt), and you’re likely to only see it in literature.  

Thai affirmative sentence structure: มี (mii) / เกิด (gòoet) / ปรากฏ (bpraa-gòt) + noun + place

Thai negative sentence structure: ไม่ (mâi) + มี (mii) / เกิด (gòoet) / ปรากฏ (bpraa-gòt) + noun + place

Compared to English: This type of sentence is the same as a “There is …” or “There are …” sentence in English.  

Example 1:  

มีสัตว์มากมายอยู่ในป่า

mii-sàt-mâak-maai-yùu-nai-bpàa“There are a lot of animals in the forest.”

มี (mii) / เกิด (gòoet) /
ปรากฏ (bpraa-gòt)
NounPlace
มี 
(mii)
There are
สัตว์
(sàt)
animal
ป่า
(bpàa)
forest

Example 2:  

เกิดอุบัติเหตุบริเวณนี้บ่อยครั้ง

gòoet-ù-bàt-dtì-hèet-baaw-rí-ween-níi-bòi-khráng“There have been many accidents in this area.”

มี (mii) / เกิด (gòoet) /
ปรากฏ (bpraa-gòt)
NounPlace
เกิด 
(gòoet)
There have been
อุบัติเหตุ
(ù-bàt-dtì-hèet)
accidents
บริเวณนี้
(baaw-rí-ween-níi)
this area
There Have Been Many Accidents in This Area.

Example 3:  

ไม่ปรากฎวัตถุอันตรายในทะเลสาบ

mâi-bpraa-gòt-wát-thù-an-dtà-laai-nai-thá-lee-sàap

“There is no dangerous object in the lake.”

มี (mii) / เกิด (gòoet) /
ปรากฏ (bpraa-gòt)
NounPlace
ไม่ปรากฏ 
(bpraa-gòt)
There is no
วัตถุ
(wát-thù)
object
ทะเลสาบ
(thá-lee-sàap)
lake

4. ประโยคกรรม

Explanation: ประโยคกรรม (bprà-yòok-gam) is the type of sentence that starts with the object.  

Thai affirmative sentence structure: object + ถูก (thùuk) + subject (if any) + verb

Thai negative sentence structure: object + ไม่ถูก (mâi-thùuk) + subject (if any) + verb

Compared to English: This type of sentence is the same as the passive form of sentences in English.  

Example 1:  

แก้วถูกดุที่ไม่อ่านหนังสือก่อนสอบ

kâaeo-thùuk-dù-thîi-mâi-àan-nǎng-sǔue-gàawn-sâawp“Kaew is scolded for not reading the book before the exam.”

Objectถูก
(thùuk)
SubjectVerb
แก้ว 
(kâaeo)
Kaew
ดุ
(dù)
is scolded

Example 2:  

ตฤณเกือบถูกรถชน

dtrin-gùueap-thùuk-rót-chon“Trin is almost hit by the car.”

Objectถูก
(thùuk)
SubjectVerb
ตฤณ
(dtrin)
Trin
รถ
(rót)
car
ชน
(chon)
is hit

Example 3:  

เมื่อวานมีโจรขึ้นบ้าน แต่เงินไม่ถูกขโมยไป

mûuea-waan-mii-joon-khûen-bâan dtàae-ngooen-mâi-thùuk-khà-mooi“There is a thief who broke into my house yesterday, but my money was not stolen.”

Objectไม่ถูก
(mâi-thùuk)
SubjectVerb
เงิน
(ngooen)
money
ขโมย
(khà-mooi)
is not stolen

5. ประโยคการิต

Explanation: ประโยคการิต (bprà-yòok-gaa-rít) is the type of sentence with a relative clause of the object. It represents the word order in a complex Thai sentence. Basically, it’s like combining two ประโยคประธาน (bprà-yòok-bprà- thaan), where the object of the first sentence is the subject of the second sentence.

Thai affirmative sentence structure: subject + verb + object A + verb of object A + object (if any)

Thai negative sentence structure: subject + ไม่ (mâi) + verb + object A + verb of object A + object (if any)

Compared to English: This type of sentence is the same as sentences with relative clauses of an object in English.  

Example 1:  

แม่บอกให้พ่อหยิบหนังสือให้หน่อย

mâae-bàawk-hâi-phâaw-yìp-nǎng-sǔue-hâi-nhòi“Mom asked Dad to bring her a book.”

SubjectVerbObject
แม่
(mâae)
Mom
บอก
(bàawk)
asked
พ่อ
(phâaw)
dad
พ่อ
(phâaw)
dad
หยิบ
(yìp)
bring
หนังสือ
(nǎng-sǔue)
book

Example 2:  

ฉันไม่ขอให้เธอช่วยฉัน

chǎn-mâi-khǎaw-hâi-thooe-chûuai-chǎn“I didn’t ask you to help me.”

SubjectVerbObject
ฉัน
(chǎn)
I
ไม่ขอ
(mâi-khǎaw)
didn’t ask
เธอ
(thooe)
you
เธอ
(thooe)
you
ช่วย
(chûuai)
help
ฉัน
(chǎn)
I (me)

Example 3:  

ย่าชวนฉันให้ไปตลาดเป็นเพื่อน

yâa-chuuan-chǎn-hâi-bpai-dtà-làat-bpen-phûueanMy grandma asked me to go to the market with her.”

SubjectVerbObject
ย่า
(yâa)
Grandma
ชวน
(chuuan)
ask
ฉัน
(chǎn)
I
ฉัน
(chǎn)
I
ไป
(bpai)
go
ตลาด
(dtà-làat)
market

6. Word Order with Modifiers

Improve Listening

To be able to communicate in more detail, you should learn about sentence structure with modifiers. ส่วนขยาย (sùuan-khà-yǎai) is “modifiers” in Thai. 

So how do you form sentences in Thai using modifiers? Look at the examples below:

1 – V-ing

Thai modifier: กำลัง (gam-lang)   

Thai affirmative sentence structure: กำลัง (gam-lang) + verb 

Thai negative sentence structure: ไม่ได้ (mâi-dâi) + กำลัง (gam-lang) + verb

Example 1:  

เขากำลังเดินทางมาที่นี่อยู่

khǎo-gam-lang-dooen-thaang-maa-thîi-nîi-yùu

“He is coming here now.”

Example 2:  

ตาลไม่ได้กำลังทำงานอยู่

dtaan-mâi-dâi-gam-lang-tham-ngaan-yùu

“Tan is not working now.”

2 – Should 

Thai modifier: ควร (khuuan); ควรจะ (khuuan-jà)   

Thai affirmative sentence structure: ควร (khuuan) / ควรจะ (khuuan-jà) + verb 

Thai negative sentence structure: ไม่ (mâi) + ควร (khuuan) / ควรจะ (khuuan-jà)  + verb

Example 1:  

นักเรียนควรจะมาโรงเรียนตรงเวลา

nák-riian-khuuan-jà-maa-roong-riian-dtrong-wee-laa

“Students should come to school on time.”

Students Should Come to School on Time.

Example 2

 เด็ก ๆ ไม่ควรนอนดึก

dèk-dèk-mâi-khuuan-naawn-dùek

“Children shouldn’t go to bed late.”

3 – Must 

Thai modifier: ต้อง (dtâawng)   

Thai affirmative sentence structure: ต้อง (dtâawng) + verb 

Thai negative sentence structure: ต้อง (dtâawng) + ไม่ (mâi) + verb

Example 1:   

ขนิษฐ์ต้องทำงานนี้ให้เสร็จวันนี้

khà-nít-dtâawng-tham-ngaan-níi-hâi-sèt-wan-níi

“Khanit must finish this job today.”

Example 2:  

เธอต้องไม่โกหก

thooe-dtâawng-mâi-goo-hòk

“You must not lie.”

4 – Can / Could 

Thai modifier: สามารถ…ได้ (sǎa-mâat-…-dâi)   

Thai affirmative sentence structure: สามารถ (sǎa-mâat) + verb + object (if any) + ได้ (dâi

Thai negative sentence structure: ไม่ (mâi) + สามารถ (sǎa-mâat) + verb + object (if any) + ได้ (dâi)

Example 1:  

โคลอี้สามารถทำอาหารไทยได้

khloo-îi-sǎa-mâat-tham-aa-hǎan-thai-dâi

“Chole can cook Thai food.”

Example 2

เดวิดไม่สามารถกินเผ็ดได้

dee-vìt-mâi-sǎa-mâat-gin-phèt-dâi

“David can’t eat spicy food.”

5 – Will 

Thai modifier: จะ ()   

Thai affirmative sentence structure: จะ () + verb 

Thai negative sentence structure: จะ () + ไม่ (mâi) + verb

Example 1:  

แดนจะไปเที่ยวญี่ปุ่นอาทิตย์หน้า

daaen-jà-bpai-thîiao-yîi-bpùn-aa-thít-nâa

“Dan will go traveling to Japan next week.”

Example 2:  

ส้มจะไม่ไปทำงานพรุ่งนี้

sôm-jà-mâi-bpai-tham-ngaan-phrûng-níi

“Som will not go to work tomorrow.”

6 – May / Might 

Thai modifier: อาจจะ (àat-jà)   

Thai affirmative sentence structure: อาจจะ (àat-jà) + verb 

Thai negative sentence structure: อาจจะ (àat-jà) + ไม่ (mâi) + verb

Example 1:  

มันอาจจะพังแล้วก็ได้

man-àat-jà-phang-láaeo-gâaw-dâi

“It may be broken.”

Example 2:  

เจอาจจะไม่ชอบกางเกงตัวนี้

jee-àat-jà-mâi-châawp-gaang-geeng-dtuua-níi

“J may not like these pants.”

7. Yes-No Questions

In Thai, if you want to change an affirmative sentence into a yes-no question, there’s no need to change the word order or anything. Keep reading to learn more. 

1 – Changing Affirmative Sentences into Yes-No Questions

This is the easiest part of the lesson. To make a yes-no question, all you have to do is put ไหม (mǎi) or มั้ย (mái) at the end of a sentence (before ครับ [khráp] and ค่ะ [khà] if these words are present). ไหม (mǎi) and มั้ย (mái) have pretty much the same meaning and can substitute one another. However, ไหม (mǎi) sounds a little bit more formal, while มั้ย (mái) is used more in spoken language.

2 – Answering Yes-No Questions

There are two ways to answer yes-no questions, which we’ll explain below.

1. Long answer

To give a long answer, Thai people answer the question with an affirmative sentence for yes, and a negative sentence for no. 

  • If you want to answer yes, you just cut ไหม (mǎi) or มั้ย (mái) out to turn the question into an affirmative answer.
  • If you want to answer no, you just cut ไหม (mǎi) or มั้ย (mái) out and then put ไม่ (mài) before the verb, adjective, or adverb that’s being asked to make a negative sentence.

2. Short answer

To give a short answer, Thai people answer yes-no questions with the verb, adjective, or adverb that’s being asked in the question. 

  • If you want to answer yes, you just reply with the verb, adjective, or adverb that’s being asked about.
  • If you want to answer no, you just reply with ไม่ (mài) + the verb, adjective, or adverb that’s being asked.

Example 1:

Affirmative sentence: 

ชนันต์ชอบว่ายน้ำ

chá-nan-châawp-wâai-nám

“Chanan likes to swim.”

Chanan Likes to Swim.

Question:  

ชนันต์ชอบว่ายน้ำมั้ย

chá-nan-châawp-wâai-nám-mái

“Does Chanan like to swim?”

Answer:  

ชอบ

châawp

“Yes.”

Example 2:

Affirmative sentence:  

จักรยานคันนี้ราคาแพง

jàk-grà-yaan-khan-níi-raa-khaa-phaaeng

“This bicycle is expensive.”

Question:  

จักรยานคันนี้ราคาแพงไหม

jàk-grà-yaan-khan-níi-raa-khaa-phaaeng-mǎi

“Is this bicycle expensive?”

Answer:  

จักรยานคันนี้ราคาไม่แพง

jàk-grà-yaan-khan-níi-raa-khaa-mâi-paaeng

“No, this bicycle is not expensive.”

This Bicycle Is Not Expensive.

8. Sentence Structure in Thai Tutorial

To finish learning about word order in Thai, we’ll give you a chance to practice.  Let’s translate these sentences into Thai.

1 – Aunt buys fruits.

  • Aunt buys fruits.
  • Aunt buys fruits at the market.
  • Aunt didn’t buy fruits at the market.
  • Aunt will buy fruits at the market tomorrow.
  • Aunt is buying fruits at the market.
  • Will Aunt buy fruits at the market?

Can you translate all of the sentences above? Please try your best. And then, you can check whether you’re doing it correctly or not with the answers and explanations below.

English 1: Aunt buys fruits.

Thai 1: ป้าซื้อผลไม้ (bpâa-súue-phǒn-lá-mái)

Explanation 1: This is a ประโยคประธาน (bprà-yòok-bprà-thaan), the type of sentence that Thai people use often in daily life. This Thai sentence structure is “subject + verb + object (if any).”

English 2: Aunt buys fruits at the market.

Thai 2: ป้าซื้อผลไม้ที่ตลาด (bpâa-súue-phǒn-lá-mái-thîi-dtà-làat)

Explanation 2: To convey more detail, you can add the place where the action happened after the object.

English 3: Aunt didn’t buy fruits at the market.

Thai 3: ป้าไม่ซื้อผลไม้ที่ตลาด (bpâa-mâi-súue-phǒn-lá-mái-thîi-dtà-làat)

Explanation 3: This is the negative sentence of ประโยคประธาน (bprà-yòok-bprà-thaan). To change an affirmative sentence into a negative sentence, you add ไม่ (mâi) in front of the verb.

English 4: Aunt will buy fruits at the market tomorrow.

Thai 4: ป้าจะซื้อผลไม้ที่ตลาดวันพรุ่งนี้ (bpâa-jà-súue-phǒn-lá-mái-thîi-dtà-làat-wan-phrûng-níi)

Explanation 4: This is a sentence with a modifier. You simply add the modifier in front of the verb. จะ () is “will” in Thai. In case you want to add time, you can add it either at the beginning or end of the sentence.

English 5: Aunt is buying fruits at the market.

Thai 5: ป้ากำลังซื้อผลไม้ที่ตลาด (bpâa-gam-lang-súue-phǒn-lá-mái-thîi-dtà-làat)

Explanation 5: This is a sentence with a modifier. You simply add the modifier in front of the verb. กำลัง (gam-lang) is “v-ing” in Thai.

English 6: Will aunt buy fruits at the market?

Thai 6: ป้าจะซื้อผลไม้ที่ตลาดมั้ย (bpâa-jà-súue-phǒn-lá-mái-thîi-dtà-làat-mái)

Explanation 6: This is a question with a modifier. You add the modifier in front of the verb, and then put มั้ย (mái) at the end of the sentence to make it a question.

2 – Prim plants flowers.

  • Prim plants flowers.
  • Prim plants orange flowers in the garden.
  • Prim can plant orange flowers in the garden.
  • There are no purple flowers in the garden.
  • Mom asks Prim to plant purple flowers in the garden.
  • Purple flowers are planted in the garden.

Like in the prior exercise, try to translate all of the sentences above.  And then, you can check whether you’re doing it correctly or not with the answers and explanations below.

English 1: Prim grows flowers.

Thai 1: ปริมปลูกดอกไม้ (bprim-bplùuk-dàawk-mái)

Explanation 1: This is a ประโยคประธาน (bprà-yòok-bprà-thaan), the type of sentence that Thai people use often in daily life. This Thai sentence structure is “subject + verb + object (if any).”

English 2: Prim grows orange flowers in the garden.

Thai 2: ปริมปลูกดอกไม้สีส้มในสวน (bprim-bplùuk-dàawk-mái-sǐi-sôm-nai-sǔuan)

Explanation 2: To convey more detail, you can add the place where the action happened after the object. In case you want to add adjectives, you put them after the noun you want to modify.

English 3: Prim can grow orange flowers in the garden.

Thai 3: ปริมสามารถปลูกดอกไม้สีส้มในสวน (bprim-sǎa-mâat-bplùuk-dàawk-mái-sǐi-sôm-nai-sǔuan)

Explanation 3: This is a sentence with a modifier. You simply add the modifier in front of the verb. สามารถ (sǎa-mâat) is “can” in Thai.

English 4: There are no purple flowers in the garden.

Thai 4: ไม่มีดอกไม้สีม่วงในสวน (mâi-mii-dàawk-mái-sǐi-mûuang-nai-sǔuan)

Explanation 4: This is a ประโยคกริยา (bprà-yòok-gà-rí-yaa). The structure of this Thai negative sentence is “ไม่ (mâi) + มี (mii) + noun + place.”

English 5: Mom asks Prim to plant purple flowers.

Thai 5: แม่บอกให้ปริมปลูกต้นไม้สีม่วงในสวน (mâae-bàawk-hâi-bprim-bplùuk-dàawk-mái-sǐi-mûuang-nai- sǔuan)

Explanation 5: This is a ประโยคการิต (bprà-yòok-gaa-rít). The structure of this Thai sentence is “subject + verb + object A + verb of object A + object (if any).”

English 6: Purple flowers are planted in the garden.

Thai 6: ดอกไม้สีม่วงถูกปลูกในสวน (dàawk-mái-sǐi-mûuang-thùuk-bplùuk-nai-sǔuan)

Explanation 6: This is a ประโยคกรรม (bprà-yòok-gam). The structure of this Thai sentence is “object + ถูก (thùuk) + subject (if any) + verb.”

Purple Flowers Are Planted in the Garden.

9. Conclusion

And finally, you’ve finished our Thai word order lesson. Your Thai language skills will certainly be better for it! 

Is this topic hard for you? Is Thai word order different from that in your native language? If so, how? Please let us know in the comments below.

This may be a little confusing, as word order in Thai may be different from that in your native language.  However, if you keep practicing, you’ll become better at it. Reading a lot of Thai articles, stories, or books may also help, as you’ll become more familiar with Thai word order this way.
Once you feel like you understand this lesson, don’t forget to check out other fun and interesting Thai lessons at ThaiPod101.com. Saving the earth seems to be in trend, so you should check out our lesson on this!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Thai

Guide to Thai Time: How to Ask for the Time in Thai & More

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Time is an important part of our life. Thus, it makes sense for Thai learners to learn how to ask for and give the time in Thai. Knowing Thai time phrases enables you to plan your schedule, make appointments, and better understand Thai conversations.

Telling Thai time is pretty different from doing so in English. Most of the words and phrases we’re going to look at aren’t difficult to understand, but you will need some time to get used to using them. For example, you don’t have to worry about remembering a.m. or p.m. in Thai because there is none. And we can also assure you that the way Thai people tell time is pretty straightforward, so it’s not hard to remember.

In this lesson, we’ll teach you basic time-related vocabulary such as the hours, minutes, and seconds in Thai. You’ll also get to learn various ways of telling the time in the Thai language, grouped into formal and informal ways for easier understanding. Of course, you’ll get to see and practice with many examples. Moreover, this lesson also provides you with a list of adverbs of time in Thai for more fluent speech, as well as time-related proverbs.  

So let’s get started!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Time Phrases in Thai Table of Contents
  1. Time-Related Vocabulary in Thailand
  2. Formal Way to Tell Time in Thai
  3. Informal Way to Tell Time in Thai
  4. Time Adverbs in Thai
  5. Time-Related Proverbs and Sayings in Thai
  6. Conclusion

1. Time-Related Vocabulary in Thailand

Time

Before learning how to tell time in Thailand, there’s some vocabulary to get out of the way first. Here’s a list of words you should know.

1- Time 

Thai word: เวลา (wee-laa)  

Example:  

จะเริ่มประชุมเวลากี่โมง

Jà rôoem bprà-chum wee-laa gìi moong

“What time will the meeting start?”

2- Day time 

Thai word: กลางวัน (glaang-wan)

Example:  

ตอนกลางวัน ข้างนอกร้อนมาก

Dtaawn glaang-wan khâang nâawk ráawn mâak

“In the day time, it is very hot outside.”

Additional note

There are three words that are often followed by กลางวัน (glaang-wan), listed below. The meaning of กลางวัน (glaang-wan) and these three words are pretty similar, so they can be used interchangeably.

  • เวลากลางวัน (wee-laa glaang-wan
  • ตอนกลางวัน (dtaawn glaang-wan
  • ช่วงกลางวัน (chûuang glaang-wan)

3- Night time 

Thai word: กลางคืน (glaang-khuuen)

Example:  

อย่าออกไปข้างนอกเวลากลางคืนคนเดียว ไม่ปลอดภัย

Yàa àawk bpai khâang nâawk wee-laa glaang-khuuen khon-diiao mâi bplàawt-phai

“Don’t go out alone at night time, it is not safe.”

Additional note

There are three words that are often followed by กลางคืน (glaang-khuuen), listed below. The meaning of กลางคืน (glaang-khuuen) and these three words are pretty similar, so they can be used interchangeably. 

  • เวลากลางคืน (wee-laa glaang-khuuen
  • ตอนกลางคืน (dtaawn glaang-khuuen
  • ช่วงกลางคืน (chûuang glaang-khuuen)

4- O’clock 

Thai word: นาฬิกา (naa-lí-gaa); โมง (moong)

Example 1:  

เมื่อวานนี้ นายกรัฐมนตรีเดินทางไปประเทศญี่ปุ่นตอนเวลา 10 นาฬิกา

Mûuea-waan-níi naa-yók rát-thà-mon-dtrii dooen-thaang bpai bprà-thêet yîi-bpùn dtaawn wee-laa sìp  naa-lí-gaa

“Yesterday, the prime minister went to Japan at 10 o’clock.”

Example 2:  

เธอจะถึงตอน 4 โมง

Thooe jà thǔeng dtaawn sìi moong

“She will arrive at 4 o’clock.”

Additional note

There are two points you need to know about the words for “o’clock” in Thai. 

One is the difference between นาฬิกา (naa-lí-gaa) and โมง (moong). นาฬิกา (naa-lí-gaa) is used in formal conversations, while โมง (moong) is used in informal conversations.  

Another point you should know is that นาฬิกา (naa-lí-gaa) can also mean “clock” or “watch” in the Thai language.

5- Hour 

Thai word: ชั่วโมง (chûua-moong)

Example:  

1 ชั่วโมงในภาษาไทยคืออะไร

Nùeng chûua-moong nai phaa-sǎa thai khuue à-rai

“What is 1 hour in the Thai language?”

6- Minute 

Thai word: นาที (naa-thii)

Example:  

ขอเวลาอีกไม่กี่นาที

Khǎaw wee-laa ìik mâi gìi naa-thii

“I want a few more minutes.”

7- Second 

Thai word: วินาที (wí-naa-thii)

Example:  

1 นาทีมี 60 วินาที

Nùeng naa-thii mii hòk-sìp wí-naa-thii

“There are 60 seconds in 1 minute.”

Additional note:  

In casual communication, Thai people often shorten the word วินาที (wí-naa-thii) to วิ ().

8. Clock

Thai word: นาฬิกา (naa-lí-gaa)

Example:  

นาฬิกาของเธอสวยจัง

Naa-lí-gaa khǎawng thooe sǔuai jang

“Your clock is so beautiful.”

Additional note:  

As mentioned above, นาฬิกา (naa-lí-gaa) has many meanings in the Thai language. It can mean “o’clock” or “watch.”

9. Watch 

Thai word: นาฬิกาข้อมือ (naa-lí-gaa khâaw muue)

Example:  

นาฬิกาข้อมือของเธอนั้นราคาเท่าไหร่

Naa-lí-gaa khâaw muue khǎawng thooe raa-khaa thâo-rǎi

“How much is your watch?”

Additional note:  

นาฬิกาข้อมือ (naa-lí-gaa khâaw muue) is the combination of two words: นาฬิกา (naa-lí-gaa) which means “clock” and ข้อมือ (khâaw muue) which is “wrist” in Thai. Combined, the word refers to a clock on your wrist, which is a “watch.”

As mentioned above, you can also use the word นาฬิกา (naa-lí-gaa) to refer to a “watch” in the Thai language.  However, comparing the two words, นาฬิกาข้อมือ (naa-lí-gaa khâaw muue) conveys a more specific meaning.

2. Formal Way to Tell Time in Thai 

Improve Listening

In the Thai time system, there are two main ways of telling time: a formal way and an informal way. We’ll start with the formal way first. Thai people rarely use this in daily conversation, and you’re much more likely to hear this in the news or an announcement.

The basic thing you need to know about the Thai clock is that Thai people use the twenty-four-hour clock in formal situations. Fortunately, this part is pretty easy.

1- Formal Way to Tell Time in Thai – Full Version

Below is the pattern you need to remember. You may recognize these words from the vocabulary section above.

….. นาฬิกา   + ….. นาที 

….. naa-lí-gaa   + ….. naa-thii

….. o’clock   + ….. minute

To tell the time, all you need to do is put the number in front of the unit. Just remember that Thai people use the twenty-four-hour format in formal situations. So from 1 p.m. to 12 a.m., don’t forget to change the number of the hour to 13-24 instead. For example:

  • 3 a.m. in Thai is 3 นาฬิกา (sǎam naa-lí-gaa).
  • 4 p.m. in Thai is 16 นาฬิกา (sìp-hòk naa-lí-gaa).
  • 10:26 a.m. in Thai is 10 นาฬิกา 26 นาที (sìp naa-lí-gaa yîi-sìp-hòk naa-thii).
  • 11:58 p.m. in Thai is 23 นาฬิกา 58 นาที (yîi-sìp-sǎam naa-lí-gaa hâa-sìp-bpàaet naa-thii).
4 p.m.

2- Formal Way to Tell Time in Thai – Short Version 

XX:YY น.

Thai people only use this shortened version in writing. You have to remember the pattern above. XX is the hour and YY is the minutes, so just put the numbers for the hour and minute where they belong. For example:

  • 3 a.m. or 3 นาฬิกา (sǎam naa-lí-gaa) is 3:00 น.
  • 4 p.m. or 16 นาฬิกา (sìp-hòk naa-lí-gaa) is 16:00 น.
  • 10:26 a.m. or 10 นาฬิกา 26 นาที (sìp naa-lí-gaa yîi-sìp-hòk naa-thii) is 10:26 น.
  • 11:58 p.m. or 23 นาฬิกา 58 นาที (yîi-sìp-sǎam naa-lí-gaa hâa-sìp-bpàaet naa-thii) is 23:58 น.

3- Common Formal Time-Related Sentences and Phrases

Now, let’s practice some sentences and phrases for telling time in Thai in formal situations.

What time is it?

  • ขณะนี้เวลาเท่าไหร่
  • Khà-nà-níi wee-laa thâo-rài
What Time Is It?

The current time is …..

  • ขณะนี้เวลา ….. นาฬิกา ….. นาที
  • Khà-nà-níi wee-laa ….. naa-lí-ga ….. naa-thii

What time is the …..? 

  • ….. เวลาอะไร
  • ….. wee-laa à-rai

Example:  

ประชุมเวลาอะไร

Bprà-chum wee-laa à-rai

“What time is the meeting?”

The time for XXX is ….. o’clock ….. minute.

  • XXX เวลา ….. นาฬิกา ….. นาที
  • XXX wee-laa ….. naa-lí-gaa ….. naa-thii

Example:  

ประชุมเวลา 10 นาฬิกา

Bprà-chum wee-laa sìp naa-lí-gaa

“The time for the meeting is 10 o’clock.”

3. Informal Way to Tell Time in Thai 

You’ve already learned the formal way to tell the time. Now, let’s learn the informal way. Thai people use this a lot in daily communication, both for speaking and writing.

The first thing you need to know is the main difference between the formal and informal ways to tell time in Thai. For the formal way, Thai people use the twenty-four-hour clock; for the informal way, Thai people use the twelve-hour clock.

When Thai people tell time informally, they either give you the number specifically or tell you the general period of time. We’ll explain both below, respectively. 

1- Informal Way to Say ….. O’clock in Thai

This is more difficult than the formal way of telling the time. Since the way you tell time is different for each period of the day, you have a bit to remember. For easy understanding, we’ve summarized what you need to remember in the table below.

TimeThai wordThai wordExample
1-5 a.m.1-5 a.m.dtii…..ตีสาม (dtii sǎam) is “3 a.m.” in Thai.
6-11 a.m.….. โมงเช้า….. moong cháo7 โมงเช้า (jèt moong cháo) is “7 a.m.” in Thai.
12 p.m.เที่ยงวันthîiang wan
1-5 p.m.บ่าย ….. โมงbàai ….. moongบ่ายสี่โมง (bàai sìi moong) is “4 p.m.” in Thai.
6 p.m.หกโมงเย็นhòk moong yen
 The informal way of telling time from 7-11 p.m. is special. The way to say this is …ทุ่ม (…thûm). However, instead of saying the number on the clock, Thai people start counting 7 as 1, 8 as 2, and so on. 
7 p.m.1 ทุ่มnùeng thûm
8 p.m.2 ทุ่มsǎawng thûm
9 p.m.3 ทุ่มsǎam thûm
10 p.m.4 ทุ่มsìi thûm
11 p.m.5 ทุ่มhâa thûm
12 a.m.6 ทุ่มthîiang-kuuen

2- Informal Way to Give the Minutes in Thai

The informal way of giving someone the hour is quite hard as there’s a lot to remember. However, that’s probably the most difficult part of this lesson and you’ve already passed it. Another bit of good news is that the minute part is pretty easy. There are only three points you have to remember.

0 minute in Thai 

Thai word: ตรง (dtrong)

How to use: In English, if it’s XX:00 a.m. or XX:00 p.m., such as 3 p.m. sharp, you ignore the minute part.  However, Thai people put the word ตรง (dtrong) after the o’clock time.

Example:  

ตอนนี้เวลา 9 โมงตรง

dtaawn-níi wee-laa gâo moong dtrong

“It is 9 a.m. now.”

30 minutes in Thai 

Thai word: ครึ่ง (khrûeng)

How to use

There are two ways to use this word in Thai. 

The first is to just put ครึ่ง (khrûeng) after the o’clock time.  

The second is, if you want to say thirty minutes as a period of time, you use ครึ่งชั่วโมง (khrûeng chûua-moong), which means “half an hour” in Thai.

Example 1:  

เจอกันตอนสองทุ่มครึ่งนะ

Jooe gan dtaawn sǎawng thûm khrûeng ná

“I will meet you at 7:30 p.m.”

Example 2:  

แม่ใช้เวลาทำซุปครึ่งชั่วโมง

Mâae chái wee-laa tham súp khrûeng chûua-moong

“Mom spent thirty minutes cooking soup.”

….. minutes in Thai

Thai word: XX นาที (naa-thii)

How to use: Now that we’ve covered the 0-minute and 30-minute rules, the rest is very easy. It’s the same as the formal way to tell the time. You just put the number followed by นาที (naa-thii).

Example:  

หนังจะเริ่มตอน 10 โมง 15 นาที

Nǎng jà rôoem dtaawn sìp moong sìp-hâa naa-thii

“The movie will start at 10:15 a.m.”

3- Informal Way to Tell the Time Period in Thai

Now that you can tell the time, let’s learn the name of each time period Thai people use in daily life. Thai people use ตอน (dtaawn) followed by the names of each period, except midnight.

Morning (6-9 a.m.) 

Thai word: ตอนเช้า (dtaawn-cháo)

Example:  

ตอนเช้าแถวนี้รถติดมาก

Dtaawn-cháo thǎaeo níi rót thìt mâak

“In the morning, the traffic is very bad around here.”

Nice Weather in the Morning

Morning (9-12 a.m.)  

Thai word: ตอนสาย (dtaawn-sǎai)

Example:  

พ่อออกกำลังกายตอนสาย ๆ ทุกวัน

Phâaw àawk-gam-lang-gaai dtaawn-sǎai-sǎai thúk wan

“Dad exercises every day in the morning.”

Noon (12 p.m.) 

Thai word: ตอนเที่ยง (dtaawn-thîiang)

Example:  

ตอนเที่ยงอากาศข้างนอกร้อนมาก

Dtaawn-thîiang aa-gàat khâang nâawk ráawn mâak

“The weather outside is very hot at noon.”

Afternoon (1-3 p.m.) 

Thai word: ตอนบ่าย (dtaawn-bàai)

Example:  

ตอนบ่ายวันพรุ่งนี้ ฉันมีประชุม

Dtaawn-bàai wan phrûng-níi chǎn mii bprà-chum

“I have a meeting tomorrow afternoon.”

Afternoon (3-6 p.m.) 

Thai word: ตอนเย็น (dtaawn-yen)

Example:  

ร้านอาหารแถวบ้านคิวยาวมากตอนเย็น

ráan aa-hǎan thǎaeo bâan khiu yaao mâak dtaawn-yen

“The queue of restaurants near my home is very long in the evening.”

Evening (6-9 p.m.) 

Thai word: ตอนค่ำ (dtaawn-khâm)

Example:  

น้องกลับถึงบ้านตอนค่ำเพราะรถติด

Náawng glàp thǔng bâan dtaawn-khâm phráw rót dtìt

“My sister came back home in the evening because of a traffic jam.”

Night (9-12 p.m.) 

Thai word: ตอนดึก (dtaawn-dùek)

Example:  

เธอตื่นสายเพราะมัวแต่เล่นเกมส์ตอนดึกเมื่อคืน

thooe dtùuen sǎai phráw muua dtàae lèn geem dtaawn-dùek mûuea-khuuen

“She woke up late because she played a game last night.”

Midnight (12 a.m.) 

Thai word: เที่ยงคืน (thîiang-khuuen)

Example:  

เที่ยงคืนแล้ว ยังนอนไม่หลับเลย

Thîiang-khuuen láaeo yang naawn mâi làp looei

“I still can’t sleep despite it being midnight.”

It’s Already Midnight

4- Common Informal Time-Related Sentences and Phrases

Now that you know how to informally tell the time in Thai, you should practice some time-related sentences and phrases to use in real life! 

What time is it?

  • ตอนนี่กี่โมงแล้ว
  • Dtaawn-níi gìi moong láaeo

The current time is ….. 

  • ตอนนี้เวลา …..
  • Dtaawn-níi wee-laa …..

What time is the …..? 

  • ….. ตอนกี่โมง
  • ….. dtaawn gìi moong

Example:  

กินข้าวเย็นตอนกี่โมง

gin kâao yen dtaawn gìi moong

“What time is dinner?”

The time for XXX is YYY.

  • XXX ตอน YYY
  • XXX dtawwn YYY

Example:  

กินข้าวเย็นตอน 6 โมงครึ่ง

Gin khâao yen dtaawn hòk moong khrûeng

“The time for dinner is at 6:30 p.m.”

4. Time Adverbs in Thai 

Now that you know how to tell time in Thai, it’s useful to know some time adverbs as well. They will enable you to include more detail and speak more like a native when telling the time in Thai. Here’s a list of time adverbs you should know:

1- Right now 

Thai word: ตอนนี้ (thaawn-níi); เดี๋ยวนี้ (dǐiao-níi)

Example 1:  

เธอต้องทำตอนนี้เลย

Thooe dtâawng tham dtaawn-níi looei

“You have to do it right now.”

Example 2:  

ออกไปเดี๋ยวนี้เลย!!

Àawk bpai dǐiao-níi loei

“Get out right now!!”

Additional note:  

ตอนนี้ (thaawn-níi) and เดี๋ยวนี้ (dǐiao-níi) are pretty much the same and can be used interchangeably. However, เดี๋ยวนี้ (dǐiao-níi) conveys a more immediate and urgent feeling.

2- Currently

Thai word: ปัจจุบันนี้ (bpàt-jù-baan níi)

Example:  

ปัจจุบันนี้ โรงเรียนของเรามีนักเรียน 500 คน

Bpàt-jù-baan níi roong-riian khǎawng rao mii nák riian hâa-ráauy khon

“Currently, our school has 500 students.”

3- Before 

Thai word: ก่อน (gàawn)

Example:  

อย่าลืมล้างมือก่อนกินข้าว

Yàa luuem láang muue gàawn gin khâao

“Don’t forget to wash your hands before the meal.”

Additional note:  

When using ก่อน (gàawn), the event that happens first is always in front of ก่อน (gàawn), while the event that happens later is put behind it.

4- After

Thai word: หลัง (lǎang)

Example:  

หลังกินอาหาร ต้องทานยาทันที

Lǎang gin aa-hǎan dtâawng thaan yaa than-thii

“Take medicine immediately after meals.”

Additional note:  

When using หลัง (lǎang), the event that happens later always follows หลัง (lǎang). But the event that happens first can be both in front of and after หลัง (lǎang).

5- Soon 

Thai word: เร็ว ๆ นี้ (reo-reo-níi)

Example:  

เจอกันเร็ว ๆ นี้

Jooe gan reo-reo-níi

“See you soon.”

6- Almost 

Thai word: เกือบ (gùueap)

Example:  

อาหารเกือบจะเสร็จแล้ว

Aa-hǎan gùueap jà sèt láaeo

“The food is almost done.”

7- In a while

Thai word: อีกสักครู่ (ìik sàk-khrûu)

Example:  

งานจะจบในอีกสักครู่

Ngaan jà jòp nai ìik sàk-khrûu

“The event will end in a while.”

8- For a long time

Thai word: เป็นเวลานาน (bpen wee-laa naan)

Example:  

เขาอาศัยอยู่ที่บ้านหลังนี้เป็นเวลานานแล้ว

Khǎo aa-sǎi yùu thîi bâan lǎang níi bpen wee-laa naan láaeo

“He has lived in his house for a long time.”

9- Anytime

Thai word: เมื่อไหร่ก็ได้ (mûuea-rài gâaw dâi); ตอนไหนก็ได้ (dtaawn-nǎi gâaw dâi)

Example 1:  

เธอจะมาที่นี่เมื่อไหร่ก็ได้

Thooe jà ma thîi nîi mûuea-rài gâaw dâi

“You can come here anytime.”

Example 2:  

พรุ่งนี้วันอาทิตย์ ฉันจะตื่นนอนตอนไหนก็ได้

Phrûng-níi wan-aa-thít chǎn jà dtùuen naawn dtaawn nǎi gâaw dâi

“Tomorrow is Sunday. I can wake up anytime.”

Additional note:  

เมื่อไหร่ก็ได้ (mûuea-rài gâaw dâi) and ตอนไหนก็ได้ (dtaawn-nǎi gâaw dâi) are exactly the same and can substitute one another.

10- As soon as possible

Thai word: โดยเร็วที่สุด (dooi reo thîi sùt)

Example:  

ฉันจะทำให้เสร็จโดยเร็วที่สุด

Chǎn jà tham hâi sèt dooi reo thîi sùt

“I will finish it as soon as possible.”

5. Time-Related Proverbs and Sayings in Thai

As you learn about Thai time, it’s a great idea to learn some proverbs and sayings about time in Thai. Below are five proverbs and sayings you should know! 

1- ผัดวันประกันพรุ่ง

Thai pronunciation: phàt-wan-bprà-gan-prûng

Literal meaning:  –

English meaning: Keep postponing the time

Explanation: This proverb is used to explain a situation in which something is being postponed many times over. For example, A promises to finish his homework on Saturday at first, but then he tells his mom that he’ll finish it on Sunday instead. When Sunday comes, he tells her that he’ll  finish on Monday. ผัดวันประกันพรุ่ง (phàt-wan-bprà-gan-prûng) can explain A’s behavior well.

Example:  

ทำให้เสร็จเลย อย่าผัดวันประกันพรุ่ง

Tham hâi sèt looei  yàa phàt-wan-bprà-gan-phrûng

“Finish it now, don’t keep postponing the deadline.”

2- ไก่โห่

Thai pronunciation: gài-hòo

Literal meaning: Cock yells.

English meaning: Very early morning

Explanation: Since the cock often crows in the early morning, Thai people call the early morning time ไก่โห่ (gài-hòo).

Example:  

วันนี้แม่ปลุกฉันตั้งแต่ไก่โห่

Wan-níi mâae bplùk chǎn dtâng dtàae gài-hòo

“Today, mom woke me up in the early morning.”

Rooster Crows Loudly

3- คาบเส้นยาแดง

Thai pronunciation: khâap sên yaa daaeng

Literal meaning:  –

English meaning: Almost not finishing the task in time

Explanation: The Thai proverb คาบเส้นยาแดง (khâap sên yaa daaeng) is used to explain when someone nearly misses their deadline to do something.  

Example:  

เธอทำรายงานเสร็จแบบคาบเส้นยาแดงพอดีเลย

Thooe tham raai-ngaan sèt bàaep khâap sên yaa daaeng phaaw dii loeei

“She almost didn’t finish the report in time.”

4- เวลาเป็นเงินเป็นทอง

Thai pronunciation: wee-laa bpen ngen bpen thaawng

Literal meaning: Time is silver and gold.

English meaning: Time is valuable.

Explanation: This Thai saying is used to say that time is valuable. It’s often used in situations when you’re made to wait for no good reason or your time is being wasted.

Example:  

ทำเร็ว ๆ หน่อย อย่าให้ต้องรอนาน เวลาเป็นเงินเป็นทอง

Tham reo-reo nàauy yàa hâi dtâawng raaw naan wee-laa bpen ngen bpen thaawng

“Quickly, don’t make me wait. My time is valuable.”

5- เวลาผ่านไปไวเหมือนโกหก

Thai pronunciation: wee-la phàan bpai wai mǔuean goo-hok

Literal meaning: Time passed quickly as if flying.

English meaning: Time flies.

Explanation: This Thai phrase is used to explain that time passes very quickly. Its meaning is exactly the same as “time flies” in English.

Example:  

อีกไม่กี่วันลูกชายก็จะอายุ 20 ปีแล้ว เวลาผ่านไปไวเหมือนโกหก

Ìik mâi gìi wan lûuk chaai gâaw jà aa-yú yîi-sìp bpii láaeo wee-la phàan bpai wai mǔuean goo-hòk

“My son will be twenty years old in a few days. Time flies.”

6. Conclusion

Basic Questions

What do you think about our Thai time lesson? Did you find it easy or difficult? How does time-telling in Thai compare to telling time in your own language? Please comment below to let us know.

In our opinion, some parts of this lesson are easy while others are a bit more complicated. However, with some practice, you can master it in no time. Try practicing this a lot with your peers or other Thai people you know. If you practice a lot, you’ll find everything you learned here a lot easier to remember. 

And once you’re good with this lesson, don’t forget to check out other interesting and fun lessons at ThaiPod101.com, such as Songkran Festival, Noodle in the Boat, or Wat Phra Kaew. In addition to learning more about the Thai language, you’ll also get to learn about Thai culture and traditions!

Until next time, happy Thai learning!

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