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  • Levitt Lin

Useful Cantonese Phrases


While Cantonese might not be as relevant as Mandarin it is still one of the leading dialects in China and currently dominates the Chinese communities that immigrated to the United States. So odds are that you’ll find some use to the list of phrases we'll be covering here.

néih hóu

(Hello [general])

Joigin/bāaibaai

(see you later/goodbye)

m̀hgòi

(Thank you [for the service], excuse me [passing through])

Deuim̀hjyuh

(Sorry)

Néih háih bīndouh yàhn?

(Where are you from?)

Ngóh háih [ ] yàhn.

(I am a [place you live] person.)

Chiso haih bindouh a?

(Where is the toilet?)

[location]...haih bindouh a?

(Where is… [location]?)

Ngóh m̀hsik góng gwóngdùngwá a.

(I don’t know how to speak Cantonese.)

Ngóh sik góng síusíu a

(I know how to speak a little.)

Yáuhmóuh yàhn sīk góng yìngmán a?

(Does anyone know how to speak English?)

Nīgo géidō chín a?

(How much is this?)

m̀hgòi bòng ngóh giuga dīksí a.

(Please call a taxi for me.)

m̀hgoi bòng ngóh

(Please help me)

Ngóh m̀hji.

(I don’t know.)

Specific Word Definitions:

ngóh - I, me

Néih - You

m̀hdāk - Can’t

Néih dākm̀hdāk - Can you do this?

Yìngmán - English language

gwóngdùngwá - Cantonese spoken language

Yàhn - person

góng - speak

bīndouh - where

síusíu - a little

Jung-yi - like

hóu - good (also used to add emphasis)

bòng - help

géidō - how much

síusíu - a little

m̀h - prefix, adverb that turns something into a negative.


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