How to say Hello in Thai
This phrase is used for Hi, Hello, and also Goodbye
Content
Lingo Ninja Research Team
3 min read · published April 2, 2021 · last update August 16, 2021

Hi or Hello in Thai (easy)

Greetings in Thailand are very easy. Here is a video of the most important greeting phrase in Thai. You can also see the hand gesture to use for greetings, called "wai". You should repeat that gesture when you greet someone.


Explanation
Thais use one single phrase in most situations:
Use this phrase to say Hi or Hello in Thai. It is also used for Goodbyes -- yes, the Thai language uses the same words for hello and good-bye.

The Thai Greeting written in English
Sometimes you see the phrase สวัสดี written as "Sawasdee" in English, with an "s" in the middle. But the pronunciation of สวัสดี is "Sawadee", or "Sa-wad-dee". The letter "ส" at the beginning is pronounced "s", but in the middle it is pronounced "d". Long story short, say "Sa-wad-dee", not "Sawasdee". (If you want to learn to read that, we have a free course for that.)

How to say Good Morning in Thai? You already know it.

Thais usually don't use different phrases for Good Morning / Good Day / Good Afternoon / Good Evening / Goodbye. They just use สวัสดี Hi, Hello, Goodbye
See in Dictionary
ค่ะ polite word for women
See in Dictionary
/ครับ polite word for men
See in Dictionary
.
This greeting might be the most helpful phrase for any foreigner in Thailand. You can use it in formal situations as well as in everyday life or on the phone. It is also appropriate when you get introduced to someone (you don't need to say "nice to meet you" in Thai. Just say สวัสดี Hi, Hello, Goodbye
See in Dictionary
ค่ะ polite word for women
See in Dictionary
/ครับ polite word for men
See in Dictionary
). There are less formal greetings you can use with friends (see below), but if you are not sure, better be safe and use สวัสดี Hi, Hello, Goodbye
See in Dictionary
ค่ะ polite word for women
See in Dictionary
/ครับ polite word for men
See in Dictionary

Polite particles (easy)

So what's this ค่ะ polite word for women
See in Dictionary
or ครับ polite word for men
See in Dictionary
at the end? These words are called polite particles. For most situations you can follow one simple rule:
  • If you are female, you use ค่ะ polite word for women
    See in Dictionary
  • If you are male, you use ครับ polite word for men
    See in Dictionary
  • That's it. It does 
Why should you use polite particles? Because these polite particles make your greeting sound friendly. There are also many other polite particles that you could use, but using ค่ะ polite word for women
See in Dictionary
or ครับ polite word for men
See in Dictionary
is always correct.

Less formal greetings (easy)

There are many less formal ways to say hi or hello in Thai. Here are the easiest.
For women: 
Similar for men:
Here you see a video of the different versions for women:

Other informal greetings (advanced) 

If you are walking, a typical Thai greeting is to ask ไป go; too
See in Dictionary
ไหน where; which
See in Dictionary
"where are you going?"  This is not really meant to check where you go, but more colloquial. It is ok to answer ไป go; too
See in Dictionary
กิน eat
See in Dictionary
ข้าว rice, food
See in Dictionary
"I'm going to eat something", or เดิน walk
See in Dictionary
เล่น play
See in Dictionary
"just walking for fun", even if you are going somewhere else.

Other typical Thai greetings are กิน eat
See in Dictionary
ข้าว rice, food
See in Dictionary
รึยัง or not? (colloquial)
See in Dictionary
"have you eaten?" or เป็น be, is, am, are
See in Dictionary
ยังไง how
See in Dictionary
บ้าง (to some extend) (in questions: the speaker would like to know more than one things that happened)
See in Dictionary
"how is it going?"

Learn more in our free course

If you want to learn Thai for free online, you can join our course anytime from anywhere. You will learn basics like how to say hello, order food, go shopping,… Our course is fun and highly interactive, like a game. Go and try it out.
Share article:
content_copy
more_horiz
written by
Lingo Ninja Research Team
Visit The best way to learn Thai