Hello & Thank You

Many people have asked us how the language barrier impacted our ability to communicate in Southeast Asia. For the most part, it was easy to get around without knowing the native tongue. Most signs had pictures which didn’t require translations and busting out our pantomime skills helped in most other cases.

While Sean and I learned various phrases throughout our trip, knowing how to say “hello” and “thank you” was most useful.

Here are all the ‘hellos & thank yous’ we learned in Southeast Asia:

Cambodia (Khmer)

hello – jum-reap soo-a

thank you – or-koon


Malaysia (Malaysian)

hello – hello (so simple!)

thank you – terima kasih


Myanmar (Burmese)

hello – mingalaba

thank you – ché zu ba


Thailand (Thai)

hello – sawat-dee khrab (if you are male); sawat-dee kha (if you are female)

thank you – khob khun khrab (if you are male); khob khun kha (if you are female)


***Oh, and don’t forget to smile!!! 🙂