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Travel Tips

Basic Tagalog Words and Phrases Every Tourist Should Know in the Philippines

Basic Tagalog Words and Phrases Every Tourist Should Know in the Philippines


So, you’re planning on visiting the Philippines, huh? Well, let me tell you, it’s going to be an adventure! But before you jump on a plane and head on over, there’s one thing you should know: Tagalog is the most common language spoken in the country. Don’t worry, though! I’m here to help you out with some basic Tagalog words and phrases that will make your trip a lot smoother.

Now, you might be thinking, “Do I really need to learn Tagalog? Can’t I just use English?” Sure, you can try, but let me tell you, it’s not always going to work. And even if it does, you’ll miss out on the fun of actually communicating with the locals in their own language. Plus, trust me, they’ll appreciate the effort you put in to learn some Tagalog.

So, in this article, I’m going to give you a crash course on some of the most important Tagalog words and phrases you’ll need to know. We’re talking greetings, basic conversation with locals, public transportation, restaurant, and shopping. By the end of this article, you’ll be a pro at ordering food, bargaining for souvenirs, and getting around the city like a boss.

So buckle up, my friend, and get ready to immerse yourself in the beautiful culture of the Philippines. It’s going to be one heck of a ride!


Are you ready to learn some basic Tagalog greetings? Because let me tell you, the people in the Philippines take their greetings seriously! It’s like a whole cultural thing, and if you don’t get it right, you might as well just pack up and go home. Just kidding! But seriously, it’s important to know these phrases if you want to make a good impression.

Kumusta ka?How are you?
Mabuti naman / Ayos lang akoI’m Good / I’m alright
SalamatThank you!
Walang ano man!You’re welcome!
Patawad po / Paumanhin poExcuse me (as an apology / asking permission to pass)
Sige, Bye! / Hanggang sa muliSee you later!

Alright, that’s it for greetings! Remember, the key to mastering these phrases is practice, practice, practice. So go out there and greet everyone you meet like a pro!

Basic Conversation with Locals

basic tagalog words - conversation

Hello there, eager travelers! Now that you’ve got the basics of Tagalog greetings down pat, it’s time to move on to some basic conversation phrases. You know, the kind of phrases that will make you sound like a seasoned traveler, even if you’ve only been in the country for a few days.

Pwede mag tanong?Can I ask a question?
Taga-saan ka?Where are you from?
Hindi ko maintindihanI don’t understand.

Alright, that’s it for basic conversation phrases! Use these wisely, and who knows, you might just make some lifelong friends in the Philippines!

Read next: Your Essential Guide to 18 Best Travel Apps for the Philippines

Taking Public Transportation

Beautiful asian woman talking on mobile phone while hailing for taxi on road in busy city street at night.

Now, let’s talk about taking public transportation in the Philippines. This can be a bit daunting for the uninitiated, but fear not, my fellow travelers! With these basic Tagalog phrases, you’ll be riding jeepneys and tricycles like a local in no time.

Puwede bang magtanong kung saan ang sakayan ng bus?Can I ask where the bus terminal is?
Magkano ang pamasahe?How much is the fare?
Tama ba ang sukli?Is the change correct?
Para po!Stop, please.
Saan ito papunta?Where does this go?

Alright, that’s it for taking public transportation! Just remember to keep your belongings close, hold on tight, and don’t be afraid to ask for help if you need it. Happy travels!

At the Restaurant

A Woman Eating in a Restaurant

Alright, it’s time to talk about one of my favorite topics: food! The Philippines is known for its delicious cuisine, and you won’t want to miss out on the local delicacies. Here are some basic Tagalog phrases to use at a restaurant:

Pagkain / InumanFood / Drink
Kain tayoLet’s eat!
Ang sarap!It’s delicious!
Natatae ako! / Nasaan ang CR?I need to poop! / Where is the comfort room?

Alright, that’s it for dining out in the Philippines! Just remember to bring your appetite and don’t be afraid to try new things. Happy eating!

VI. When Out Shopping Now let’s talk about one of my favorite activities: shopping! Whether you’re looking for souvenirs or just want to indulge in some retail therapy, here are some Tagalog phrases to help you out:

Mayroon ba kayong mas mura?Do you have anything cheaper?
Gusto ko itoI want this
Hindi ko kailanganI don’t need it

Alright, happy shopping! Just remember to keep an eye on your budget and don’t be afraid to haggle a little. Who knows, you might just find your new favorite souvenir!

When Complimenting Someone

Ah, complimenting someone in Tagalog! This is where the real charm comes in. If you want to make a good impression on a local, you have to know how to dish out some compliments. Here are some Tagalog words and phrases that will make you a compliment-giving machine:

Ang ganda/gwapo mo.You’re beautiful/handsome.
Ang husay mo naman.You’re so skilled.
Napakacute mo.You’re so cute.
Ang lakas ng dating mo.You have a strong presence.
Ang talino mo naman.You’re so intelligent.
Ang bait mo.You’re so kind.
Ang bango mo.You smell good.
Ang sarap mo kasama.You’re so fun to be with.
Ang confident mo.You’re so confident.

Just remember, it’s important to be sincere and genuine when giving compliments. Don’t overdo it or be too forward, and always be respectful of the local culture. And who knows? Your Tagalog skills might just help you find a new friend or even a special someone.


Well, there you have it, folks! We’ve covered some basic Tagalog words and phrases that will help you navigate your way around the Philippines. From greetings to ordering food to asking for directions, you’re now equipped with some essential Tagalog phrases to get you started.

But don’t stop there! Learning more Tagalog words and phrases will not only enhance your travel experience but also make it more immersive. Plus, locals will appreciate your efforts to learn their language and culture.

So go ahead and practice your Tagalog skills. Who knows, you might even impress some locals with your newfound language abilities. And always remember, it’s never too late to learn something new, especially when it comes to exploring new places and cultures.

Kaya, mag-aral na ng Tagalog ngayon! (So, start learning Tagalog now!)

If you wanna level up, learn some conyo phrases!

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