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Minnan phrasebook

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Southern Min, Minnan (閩南語 Bân-lâm-gú), also known as Hokkien-Taiwanese is a Chinese Min language sub-group of dialects that is mainly spoken in Southern region of Fujian province, Taiwan and certain overseas chinese communities in Southeast Asia. It is the most well known and the major Min Chinese dialect group of Fujian today. The three mutually intelligible Min Nan dialects are Quanzhou, Zhangzhou and Xiamen dialects. They are collectively known as the Quanzhang (泉漳) variety of Southern Min or Minnan Hua (閩南話 bân-lâm-ōe). Today, Min Nan Chinese speakers make up the majority of the chinese population in Fujian Province and Taiwan. The Minnan speaking chinese descendents make up the majority of the overseas chinese population in Southeast Asian countries such as Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Philippines.

The Minnan dialects that are widely spoken in Taiwan where it is referred to as Taiwanese (臺語 tâi-gí/臺彎話 tâi-oan-ōe). Another variant is also spoken widely in the Philippines where it is referred to as Lan Nang Oe (咱人話 lán-lâng-ōe). In Singapore, Malaysia and Medan, the Minnan dialects are called Hokkien (福建話 hok-kiàn-ōe), the Minnan pronunciation of 'Fujian'.

The two Modern Standard Min Nan dialects are Xiamen dialect and Taiwanese dialect (Tainan accent). Both Min Nan dialects are mixtures of Quanzhou and Zhangzhou dialects. The Tainan accent is the Minnan dialect accent that is used for broadcasting Minnan dialect television programs and also Minnan song production in Taiwan. The dialects spoken in Taiwan, other parts of mainland China, Singapore, Malaysia, Medan and other Chinese communities have some differences, due to borrowing of words from different languages and sometimes language evolution due to relative isolation. Most notably, Minnan spoken in Taiwan has borrowed some words from Japanese, so "uncle" could be said as "ojisan" in Taiwan instead of 阿伯 "a-pek" (father's elder brother), 阿叔 "a-chek" or 阿舅 "a-kū" (mother's brother) as in Xiamen.

The Minnan dialect spoken in Zhangzhou, Fujian province has some subtle differences from the Xiamen dialect. (eg. kiam nui instead of kiam neng for salted egg). Linguistically, the Minnan dialects spoken in Quanzhou, Zhangzhou, Xiamen and Taiwan are largely mutually intelligible. However, due to the historical fact that the mountainous landscape of Fujian province has resulted in a noticeable differences in accents from various parts of Southern Fujian, some difficulty in communication would still exist even between native speakers to some extent. Nevertheless, due to the recent efforts to better promote the Min Nan language and culture in Xiamen and the popularity of Taiwanese Min Nan entertainment shows and songs among the Min Nan chinese speaking population these days, many Min Nan speakers are getting familiar with the Modern Standard Min Nan accents of Xiamen and Taiwanese dialects.

In certain areas of Guangdong and the whole of Hainan island, there are chinese dialects are sometimes considered Min Nan dialects, but in fact they are considered separate languages. The Min Nan variants spoken in Guangdong and Hainan bear more differences with mainstream Min Nan than the differences between the Min Nan dialects spoken in Southern Fujian and Taiwan. They are in fact separate languages, such as Teochew spoken in Eastern Guangdong and Hainanese spoken in Hainan island in the far southern tip of Mainland China.

Generally speaking, the Quanzhang variety of Min Nan dialects spoken in Southern Fujian and Taiwan is the mainstream form although the native chinese speakers of Min Nan variants in Guangdong and Hainan do not necessarily speak any dialect of mainstream Min Nan spoken in Southern Fujian and Taiwan.

The Teochew (Chaoshan 潮汕) variant of Minnan is spoken around Chaozhou and Shantou in Guangdong, and by large foreign Chinese Teochew communities around the world including Hong Kong, Malaysia, Singapore, Thailand and France. It has low mutual intelligibility with mainstream Minnan. It is significantly different from mainstream Min Nan (eg. zêg-kâi-nâng instead of chı̍t-ê-lâng for '一個人'). While most cognates with Minnan found in Teochew (Chaoshan 潮汕) variant are mutually intelligible with mainstream Minnan to a small degree, some parts of Teochew are distinct enough to be mutually unintelligible to a mainstream Minnan speaker from Southern Fujian and Taiwan.

While the Hainanese variant of Minnan spoken on the island of Hainan shares historical linguistic roots with Minnan, it differs more significantly and is mutually unintelligible to a mainstream Minnan speaker from Southern Fujian and Taiwan.

It can be said to be mutually unintelligible with standard Mandarin and other dialects not only due to the pronunciation differences but also because of the irregular word/character conversion i.e. a non-native Minnan speaker can only understand the dialect to a small extent even when it is presented in written form (e.g. "吃甲尚好驚血壓高,水姆兌人走" : 《陳雷.歡喜就好》) It is also not mutually intelligible with the other branches of the Min dialect family such as Mindong, Minbei and Puxian.


Like all other Chinese languages and their dialects, Minnan uses Chinese characters but employs its own 'unique' pronunciation. However, it should be noted that similar to Japanese kanji, most characters have two or more pronunciations in Minnan, which means that many characters would be pronounced differently depending on context, even if their Mandarin pronunciation remains the same in both instances.

This is partly due to the fact that, because standard written Chinese is based on Mandarin, many words in Minnan are written with characters of the same meaning in standard written Chinese.

For example, the words ài and beh both roughly mean 'want', so they are usually written with the character 要 (although they are also written with 愛 and 欲 respectively). Consequently, the pronuncation of the character 要 can change between ài, beh and iàu depending on context.

The ordinary word for person, lâng, is usually written with the character 人, which also has the reading jı̂n or lîn. The character 生 is is pronounced seⁿ or siⁿ as a verb used alone, but the word 人生 is pronounced lı̂n-seng.

Also, note how the words m̄ (is not, does not) and bē/bōe (cannot) are all often written with 不, so while 不要 might be read as m̄-ài or m̄-beh, 不能/不可 can be read as bē-sái or bōe-sái.

For referring to oneself, 我 góa is used in more informal context while 阮 gún is more formal and 恁爸 lı́n-pē is very derogatory but used very commonly. (No cognates exist in Mandarin or Cantonese although phrases with the same meaning do.) Similar to Malay, there are two equivalents of the English word "we", with lan-nang including the listener in the group, and goa-nang used to exclude the listener from the group.

Pronunciation varies from region to region (e.g. 你 (you) can be either lı́ and ). This can make comprehension slightly difficult sometimes even between 'native' speakers from Quanzhou and Zhangzhou. It should also be kept in mind that most speakers of the dialect often mix Mandarin phrases into their speech due to the influence of Standard Mandarin.


Like other varieties of Chinese, Minnan is tonal; tones must be correct in order to convey the correct meaning. Tone sandhi is very common and complex (non-standardised) in Minnan, which makes it harder to learn than Mandarin, where tone sandhi is standardised, and Cantonese, where tone sandhi is used sparingly.

The following table shows the values of the different tones in some places, and does not show the pronunciation of the tones or tone sandhi of many areas, but may give an idea of the approximate values.

Tones of Minnan
Number Name POJ Pitch Description After tone sandhi
1 yin level a 55 high 7
2 yin rising á 51 falling 1
3 yin departing à 31~21 low falling 2
4 yin entering ah 32 mid stopped 2 (h final), 8 (otherwise)
5 yang level â 14~24 rising 3 (Taipei), 7 (Tainan)
6 yang rising á 51 falling 1
7 yang departing ā 33 mid 3
8 yang entering a̍h 4 high stopped 3 (h final), 4 (otherwise)


Minnan has many different consonants, even more so than standard Mandarin or Cantonese, and pronouncing them all correctly is a challenge for English speakers. While Mandarin only distinguishes between aspirated and unaspirated (unvoiced) consonants, and English only distinguishes between voiced and unvoiced consonants meaning-wise, Minnan makes a distinction in both cases. This means that aspirated unvoiced (pʰ, tʰ, kʰ), unaspirated unvoiced (p, t, k), and unaspirated voiced (b, d, g) are all separate phonemic consonants in Minnan.

To highlight the distinction, the words for "open" (開) and "close" (關), in some pronunciations (khui and kui respectively) sound almost identical to a native English speaker, only difference being that "open" uses an aspirated initial k while "close" uses an unaspirated initial k! The j sound in English is also used along with the j sound in Mandarin hanyu pinyin. Labial initials such as the m sound are also present. However, unlike in Mandarin, there is no "tongue rolling" (pinyin r) initial consonant.

Initial consonanats of POJ
Letter IPA English example Notes
b b ban voiced pinyin 'b'
p p span pinyin 'b'
ph pan pinyin 'p'
j dz/ʑ fads voiced pinyin 'z'
ch ts/tɕ cats pinyin 'z' or 'j'
chh tsʰ/tɕʰ - pinyin 'c' or 'q'
s s/ɕ sun pinyin 's' or 'x'
g g get goiced pinyin 'g'
k k skin pinyin 'g'
kh kin pinyin 'k'
t t Stan pinyin 'd'
th tan pinyin 't'
h h hat English 'h'

Like Cantonese but unlike Mandarin, Minnan retains all the final consonants (m, n, ŋ, p, t, and k) of Middle Chinese. In POJ, the nasal consonants m, n and ng are pronounced the same as English, but the others are different.

The stop consonants p, t and k are unreleased. This means that the mouth moves into the position of making the consonant, but no burst of air is released.

Furthermore, an h at the end of a syllable in POJ represents a glottal stop (ʔ); this is the sound in the middle of the English word 'uh-oh'.


The vowels a, e, i, o, u are pronounced as they are in many languages, such as Spanish. Minnan also has the vowel [ɔ] written as (with a dot) or oo.

Vowels of POJ
Letter IPA English example Notes
a a father
e e whey
i i see
o o soap
ɔ law also written 'oo'
u u goose

Vowels in Minnan can be nasalized, and in POJ this is indicated with a superscript n 'ⁿ' after the vowel. It can also be indicated with a capital n (N) or a double n (nn). IPA notes this with a tilde (~) above the last vowel.

Common diphthongs[edit]

There are many dipthongs in Minnan, and there pronunciation from the POJ spelling is generally fairly obvious. However, note that oe is "ui/uei" and oai is "uai".

Dipthongs of POJ
Letter IPA English example Notes
ai my pinyin 'ai'
au cow pinyin 'ao'
ia ɪa -
iu iu -
io ɪo -
oa ua - pinyin 'wa'
oe ui way pinyin 'wei'
iau ɪaʊ - piyin 'yao'
oai uai why pinyin 'wai'

Phrase list[edit]

This article or section does not match our manual of style or needs other editing. Please plunge forward, give it your attention and help it improve! Suggested fixes: None specified. Please use the article's talk page to ask questions if you are not sure why this tag was added and whether it is safe to remove it.

Phrases in this section are not consistently transcribed with Pe̍h-ōe-jī and Wikitravel's romanization guidelines. If you are familiar with the language, please help fix them up!

The Minnan phrase list below covers the mainstream Minnan dialect spoken in Southern Fujian and Taiwan. The pronounication is mostly based on Xiamen dialect or Taiwanese dialect (Tainan accent).

  • Also to note is the sound of "l" used below. Linguists call this sound a "flap": it is similar to the "tt" sound in Standard American pronunciation of "butter". It is also similar to the Japanese "r" and the Spanish "single-r" sounds.


汝好。 lı́ hó
How are you? 
你好無? lı́ hó bô?
How are you?/Have You Eaten 
食飽袂? chia̍h-pá-bē/buē
Not bad 
袂䆀 bē-bái/buē-bái
Fine, Thank you. (informal) 
好,多謝 hó,to-siā
Fine, Thank you. (formal)
好,感謝 hó,kám-siā.
What is your name? 
汝叫啥物名? lı́ kiò siáⁿ-mı̍h miâ?
My name is ... . 
我的名是... góa ê miâ sı̄...
Nice to meet you. 
真/足歡喜熟似汝。 tsin/tsiok huann-hí si̍k-sāi lı́
May i ask you.... 
請問... chhiáⁿ mn̄g...
拜託 Pài-thok
You're welcome 
免客氣 bián kheh-khı̀ ("don't be polite")
是 sı̄ (Note: Only some questions are answered with this. As with other varieties of Chinese, affirmation is generally done by repeating the verb in the question.)
毋是 m̄-sı̄
Excuse me 
否勢 phái-sè
I'm sorry. (informal) 
否勢 phái-sè
I'm sorry. (formal)
失禮。sit lé.
再見 chài-kiàn
I can't speak Minnan/Taiwanese well. 
我袂啥会曉講閩南語/台語... góa bē/buē siánn e-hiáu kóng bân-lâm-gı́(gú)/tâi-gı́(gú)
I don't know how to speak Minnan/Taiwanese and Mandarin 

góa bē/buē-hiáu kóng [Bân-lâm-gı́(gú)/tâi-gı́(gú)] kah [phóo-thong-uē / kok-gí(gú)]

Do you speak English or Mandarin? 
你敢會曉講英語抑是(普通話/國語)? lı́ kám-ē-hiáu kóng eng-gı́ ia̍h-sī [phóo-thong-uē / kok-gí(gú)]?
Is there someone here who speaks English? 
遐敢有人會曉講英語?chia kám-ū lâng ē hiáu kóng ing-gı́(gú)?
救命! kìu-miā!
Look out! / Be Careful! 
Good morning. 
𠢕早。 gâu-chá.
Good Evening. 
暗暝好。 àm-mî-hó
Good Night 
暗安 à-man
I don't understand. 
我聽無。góa thiaⁿ bô.
Where's the Toilet? 
厕所佇"倒落"? ceh-só tī tó-lo̍h (Southern Fujian, Mainland China)
便所佇"佗位"? piān-só tī toh-uī? (Taiwan)
I want this/that 
我愛這個/彼個物件。 góa ài tsit-ê/hit-ê mi̍h-kiānn
I don't want this/that 
我莫這個/彼個物件 góa mài tsit-ê/hit-ê mi̍h-kiānn
会使 ē-sái
袂使 bē-sái/buē-sái
I know. 
我知影 góa tsai-iánn
I don't know. 
我毋知影 góa m̄ tsai-iánn
You are kind 
汝(真/足)善良 lı́ tsin/tsiok siān-liông
You are helpful 
予汝(真/足)無閒 hoo lı́ tsin/tsiok bô-îng,汝是一個好跤手 lı́ sı̄ tsit-ê hó kha tshiú。
You are beautiful (woman) 
汝(真/足)媠 lı́ tsin/tsiok suí
You are handsome (man) 
汝(真/足)緣投 lı́ tsin/tsiok iân-tâu


Go away 
閃開 siám-khui
Don't touch me! 
莫摸我 mài mo góa
Don’t beat me! 
莫拍我mài phah góa
I am being raped by a pervert!
我予一個痴哥強姦。góa hōo tsi̍t ê tshi-ko kiông-kan
Don't mess with me! 
莫烏白亂來mài oo-pe̍h luān-lâi
I'll call the police 
我去報警!góa khì pò-kíng
Police Station 
Someone, please人啊,来救我!lâng ah, lâi kiù góa
Stop There! 
停 thêng /汝共我擋咧。lí kā guá tòng leh
搶劫 tshiúnn-kiap
Chase the thief! Don’t let him/her run away. 
追那個賊仔,莫予伊逃走去。tui hit ê tsha̍t-á, mài hōo i tô-tsáu khì
I was robbed. 
我遭遇著搶劫。góa tso-gū tio̍h tshiúnn-kiap
Please catch the thief. 
Don’t harm/hurt me. 
莫傷害我。mài siong-hāi góa
Don’t kill me. Spare me. 
莫刣我。饒我一命。mài thâi góa。jiâu góa tsi̍t miā
The thief stole my money, passport, handphone, jewellery, valuables. 
賊仔偷提我的錢,護照,手機仔,首飾佮貴重的物件去。tsha̍t-á thau-the̍h- góa-ê-tsînn ,hōo-tsiàu ,tshiú-ki-á ,tshiú-sik kah Kuì-tiōng ê mi̍h-kiānn khì
I need your help 
我需要汝的幫忙 góa su-iàu lı́-ê pang-bâng
Can you help me out with my problem? 
汝敢会使佮我[鬥相共/鬥跤手/解決問題]?lı́ kám ē-sái kah góa (tàu-sann-kāng // tàu-kha-tshiú // kái-kuat būn-tê/būn-tuê)
I lost my way 
我行無路。góa kiânn-bô-lōo
I would like to ask you for directions. 
我想欲問路。góa Siūnn beh/bueh mn̄g-lōo
Can you tell me how to go to this/that place? 
汝敢会使佮我講這个所在安怎去? Lı́-kám ē-sái kah góa kóng tsit ê sóo-tsāi án-tsuánn khì?
Can you lead the path? 汝敢会使𤆬路? 
Lı́-kám ē-sái tshuā lōo?
I lost my purse/wallet. 
我的皮包仔/錢袋仔放去 góa-ê (phuê-pau-á/phê-pau-á)/ tsînn-tē-á pàng-khì
I'm sick. 
我破病góa phuà-pēnn/phuà-pīnn
I've been injured. 
我著傷góa tio̍h siong
My wound is bleeding. 
我的空喙流血。góa-ê khang-tshuì lâu-hueh/lâu-huih
I felt pain. 
我(真/足)疼。góa tsin/tsiok thiànn
I am scared. 
我(真/足)驚。góa tsin/tsiok kiann
I am not feeling well. 
我袂爽快/袂舒服。góa (bē/ buē sóng-khuài) / (bē/ buē soo ho̍k)
Please call an ambulance. 
請報救护車。Tshiánn pò Kiù hōo tshia
I need a doctor. 
我欲去看醫生góa beh/bueh khì i-sing
I need to go to clinic/hospital. 
我欲去診所góa beh/bueh khì tsín-sóo (Mainland China : 醫院 i-īnn, Taiwan : 病院pēnn-īnn/pīnn-īnn)
Can I borrow your phone? 
Don't lie to me! 
莫講白贼!mài kóng pe̍h-tsha̍t
Don’t Pretend 
莫假死 mài ké-sí / 莫搬戲mài puann-hì / 莫做戲mài tsò-hì/tsuè-hì


Numbers in Minnan are basically the same as numbers in other varieties of Chinese.

Please note the rules about when to use the two different words for 2 (nn̄g and jī). Jī is used in the ones, tens and hundreds place, whereas nn̄g is used for multiples of numbers 100 and greater. This is analogous to the use of 兩 and 二 in mandarin.

空 khong (kong)
一 it / chi̍t (chjit)
二 jī (li/ji/di) / 兩 nn̄g (nng)
三 saⁿ (sa)
四 sì (si)
五 ngō (go)
六 la̍k (lak)
七 chhit (chit)
八 pueh / peh (bpui)
九 káu (kau)
十 cha̍p (tzhap)
十一 cha̍p-it (tzhap-it)
十二 cha̍p-jī (tzhap-li)
十三 cha̍p-saⁿ (tzhap-sa)
十四 cha̍p-sì (tzhap-si)
十五 cha̍p-gō· (tzhap-go)
十六 cha̍p-la̍k (tzhap-lak)
十七 cha̍p-chhit (tzhap-chit)
十八 cha̍p-peh (tzhap-peh)
十九 cha̍p-káu (tzhap-kau)
二十 jī-cha̍p (li-tzhap)
二十一 jī-cha̍p-it (li-tzhap-it)
二十二 jī-cha̍p-jī (li-tzhap-li)
一百 chi̍t-pah (chit-pah)
兩百 nn̄g-pah (nng-pah)
兩百二十二 nn̄g-pah-jī-cha̍p-jī (nng-pah-li-chap-li)
一千 chi̍t-chhien (chit-chien)
兩千 nn̄g-chhien
一萬 chi̍t-bān
兩萬 nn̄g-bān
十萬 cha̍p-bān
一百萬 chi̍t-pah bān
一千萬 chi̍t-chhing bān
一億 chi̍t-ik
十億 cha̍p-ik
一百億 chi̍t-pah ik
一千億 chi̍t-chhing ik
一兆 chi̍t-tiāu
number _____ (train, bus, etc.) 
_____號 hō
半 puànn 
少 tsió
濟 tsē/tsuē

Ordinal Numbers[edit]

Ordinal numbers in Chinese are expressed by prepending the number with '第', pronounced in Minnan.

第一 tē-it (day-it)
第二 tē-jı̄ (day-ji)
第三 tē-saⁿ (day-sa)
第四 tē-sı̀ (day-si)
第五 tē-gō͘ (day-go)

And so on, for any number:

Twentieth 第二十 tē-jı̄-cha̍p (day ji-tzap)
第一百 tē-chı̍t-pah (day chit-pah)
第一千 tē-chı̍t-chhian (day chit-chien)


what time is it? 
幾點 kúi tiám (kwee tiam)?
這馬 chit-má (jeemah) / 這陣 chit-tsūn (jeetzoon)
kah dahng-ay or shuh dahng
ee jun
早 chá (dtsah)
較早 kah chá (kah dtsah)

下晡 / (tao dtsah)
in the morning 
早起 chá-khí (tzai kee)
tomorrow morning 
明仔載 bîn-á-tsá-khí miyah tsai kee tao dtsah
下晡 (ay boh)
in the afternoon 
ay ahm
In the evening 
暗 àm
In the night 
暗時 àm-sî (ahm-sheea)
今暗 kim-àm / 今暝 kim-mı̂ (kim mi)

Clock time[edit]

One o'clock AM 
 ?一點 (tao tza jeet/yi4 diam)
Two o'clock AM 
 ?兩點 (tao tza nen/di3 diam)
中晝 tiong-tàu (dyong dow) / (ey3 bpo1)


半暝 puàⁿ-mî (bpua mi)


_____ minute(s) 
_____ 分鐘 hun-ching (whhun-ching)
_____ hour(s) 
_____ 點鐘 tiám-ching / (diam-jun)
_____ day(s) 
_____ 日 ji̍t (*leet)
_____ week(s) 
_____ 禮拜 lé-pài (*lay bai)
_____ month(s) 
_____ 月 gue̍h (whay)
_____ year(s) 
_____ 年 nî (nee)


今日/今仔日 kin-á-jit / (gyah *de *deet)
昨昏 chah-hng (dtsah-ung)
明仔載 bîn-á-chài (miyah tsai) or 明日 miyah-jit
the day before last 
昨日 cho̍h--ji̍t (tzuh *leet)
the day after tomorrow 
後日 āu--ji̍t (ow *leet)
this week 
這禮拜 chit lé-pài (tsi *lay bai)
last week 
(den *lay-bai)
next week 
後禮拜 āu lé-pài (ow *lay-bai)
禮拜日 lé-pài-jı̍t (le-bai-*leet)
拜一 pài-it (bai-eet)
拜二 pài-jı̄ (bai-*dee)
拜三 pài-saⁿ (bai-sa)
拜四 pài-sı̀ (bai-shee)
拜五 pài-gō͘ (bai-go)
拜六 pài-la̍k (bai-*lahk)


一月 it-go̍eh
二月 jı̄-go̍eh
三月 saⁿ-go̍eh
四月 sı̀-go̍eh
五月 gō͘-go̍eh
六月 la̍k-go̍eh
七月 chhit-go̍eh
八月 poeh-go̍eh
九月 káu-go̍eh
十月 cha̍p-go̍eh
十一月 cha̍p-it-go̍eh
十二月 cha̍p-jı̄-go̍eh


色 sek
烏色 o·-sek
白色 pe̍h-sek
灰色 hoe-sek
紅色 âng-sek
藍色 nâ-sek
黃色 n̂g-sek
青色 chhiⁿ-sek
柑仔色 kam-á-sek : ("mandarin orange color")
茄色 kiô-sek : ("eggplant color")
土色 thó·-sek : ("dirt color")


Bus and train[edit]

[?]票 phiò (dyu pyuh)
One ticket 
一票 chit phiò (jeet-pyuh)
How much is one ticket? 
一票是幾箍? chit phiò sī kuí khoo (Jeet-pyuh shee gwee-koh?)
公車 / [?] (kay-wun)
火車 hóe-chhia (whey-chiah)
Where does this bus go? 
chit-ê (Dze-day kay-wun kee-dah?)
Does this train go to ____? 
(Dze-day whey-chiah gah-oo kee ____?)
What time does this train leave? 
(Dze-day whey-chiah gwee diam tsooh-whaht?)
What time will this bus arrive? 
(Dze-day kay-wun gwee diam ay gow-wee?)
Please stop! 
拜託,擋! pài thok,tòng (Pbai-toh, dong!)


How do I get to ____? 
[?] 按怎去 (mbay ahndswah kee ____?)
...the train station? 
火車站 hué-chhia-chām / (whey chiah dyoo?)
...the bus station? 
(kay-wun dyoo?)
...the airport? 
(whey-deng-gee dyoo?)
(chee dyong sheemg?)
...the hotel? 
旅館 lú-kuán (*lee-guang?)
...the restaurant? 
飯店 pn̄g-tiàm (bung-diam?)
Where are there a lot of ____? 
(Dway oo jote-tsay ____?)
Do you have a map? 
(*lee gah-oo day-doh?)
路 lō͘/lo̍h (*loh)
倒 tò (duh) / 左 chó
正 chiàⁿ (jyah)
turn left 
倒[?] (duh wah)
straight ahead 
直直去 tı̍t-tı̍t khı̀ (dee-deet kee) / 直直行 ti̍t-ti̍t kiâⁿ (dee-deet gyah)


計程車 kè-thîng-tshia(gay-dyen chiah)
Drive me to ____ 
[?]我去 ____。 (dzai wah kee ____)
How much to go ____ 
欲去 ____幾箍? beh khì ____ kuí khoo?(mbay kee ____ gwee koh)?


Do you have any rooms available? 
有房間無 ū pâng-king bô? (Oo bahn-gyun mbo?)
How much for one room? 
一間[?]? (Jeet gyun, wah-tsay gyee?)
One person 
一個人 chı̍t-ê-lâng (dzeday lahng)
Two persons 
兩個人 n̄ng-ê-lâng (nungay lahng)
Does it have ____? 
敢有____? kám-ū ____ ? (Gah oo ____ ?)
a bathroom 
便所 piān-só͘? (beng soh?)
a telephone 
電話 tiān-ōe (dyung way?)
a TV 
電視 tiān-sī
May I see it first? 
[?]先看?(Gah-ay-dahng shung kwah?)
Do you have something more ____? 

kám-ū kah|khah (Gah oo kah)

大的 tōa-ê (dwah-ay)
俗的 sio̍k-ê (shohg-ay)
OK, I'll sleep here for ____ nights. 
好,[?]暗 Huh, mbay-kuhng ____ ahm.
Is there another hotel? 
[?]有[?] 旅館 (Gah oo bahg-ay *lee-guang?)
What time is breakfast? 
早頓幾點? (Dzah-dun gwee-diam?)
Please clean my room 
拜託 我的 房間 (Pbai toh kyeng wah-ay bahn-gyun)
Can you wake me at ... ? 
,好無?... gah-way gyuh kiah, huhbuh?


Credit card 
(swah kah)
Where can I exchange money? 
(Dway ay-dahng wah gjee?)


Have some tea 
飲茶 lim tê
Make tea 
泡茶 phàu tê
早頓 chá-tǹg (dzah-dun)
中頓 tiong-tǹg
暗頓 àm-tǹg
點心 tiám-sim
I want... 
我欲 góa beh (gwah beh)
茶 tê (teh)
咖啡 ka-pi (kopi)
Chicken Meat
雞肉 ke-bah/koe-bah (bah = meat)
Beef Meat
牛肉 gû-bah
雞卵 ke-nn̄g/koe-nn̄g
水果 chúi-kó, 果子 kóe-chí/ké-chí
菜 chhài
魚仔 hî-á (hee-ah) / 魚 hî/hû (hhu2/hhw2; sounds like a long 'huh' without the vowel)
pahng (from Portugese) / (bin taw) / 麵包 mī-pau (mee-bao)
麵 mı̄ (mee)
Rice (uncooked) 
米 bı́ (bee)
Rice (cooked) 
飯 pn̄g (buhng)
啤酒 (bee chiu)
鹽 iâm (yahm)
hyahm / 胡椒粉 hô͘-chio-hún (hhoh chjio hun)
Done eating 
食飽了 chia̍h-pá-liáu (jyah pah lyow)
Good to eat 
好食 hó-chia̍h (huh jyah)
Good to drink 
好啉 hó-lim (huh lim)



How much? 
偌濟? jōa-chōe (luaa zwuei)
How many dollars/yuan? 
幾箍? kúi kho͘ (gwee koh)
Too much 
傷 shyoo-(gke4) zwuei3
Don't want 
莫/勿 mbwai / mmm...-mai3
I need... 
(Wah dah-ai...)
齒抿 khí-bín (kee-mbeeng)
茶箍 tê-kho͘ (day koh)
洗頭毛 sóe thâu-mn̂g (suay tow-mun) (literally "wash hair")
紙 chóa (dzwah)
筆 pit (mbeetd / pbeet)
書 chu (dzoo) / 冊 chheh (tz-cheh)


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