How to Say Thank You in Different Languages
In this mini guide we will teach you how to say thank you in different languages!
It is important to always try and learn a little of a language when you visit a new country. English one of the three most widely spoken languages in the world and as such is most people’s second language. In that sense, English speakers are very luck, there are so many people in this world that are either fluent in the same tongue as you or trying their very best to become that way.
There are certainly phrases that can get you a long way when you’re travelling. Hello, goodbye and thank you are the bare minimum that you should try and master before leaving home. Numbers one to ten are also a big bonus and other phrases like ‘where is’, ‘how much’ and ‘please’.
Here are 15 different ways to say thank you around the world!
How to Say Thank You in Japanese
Japanese is not a hard language to master in theory. Their alphabet makes learning to read and write a challenge but in terms of language formation it is actually manageable.
Japan is steeped in culture and tradition and as such you should remember to always bow when you say thank you, especially in formal situations. Simply buying some food from a market stall wouldn’t warrant a deep and sincere bow but receiving gifts or thanking someone for their hospitality is certainly worthy of a bow.
To say thank you in Japanese you say ‘Arigatōu gozaimashita’. In more informal situations simply ‘Arigatōu’ will suffice.
How to Say Thank You in Korean
There is much conflict and animosity between North Korea and South Korea that many people are fearful of travelling to that little pocket of our earth. South Korea is an amazing place to travel in and very safe too.
The food and nightlife are certainly something to behold and the rolling landscapes outside of the city are amazing too.
The Korean alphabet, much like the Chinese and Japanese alphabet can be difficult to get to grips with initially but learning to speak Korean can be a simple process.
To say thank you in Korean you say ‘gomabseubnida’.
How to Say Thank You in Chinese
As you may well know there are two main languages of China. The official language of China is Mandarin and this is one of the three most widely spoken languages in the world, along with English and Spanish. The second language of China is Cantonese and this is widely spoken in Singapore, Taiwan and Hong Kong too.
The general term for thank you in Mandarin is ‘Xièxiè’. This is pronounced ‘zhe-zhe’. This can be used as a thank you for everything from buying your clothes from a shop assistant to saying thank you to your real estate agent for helping you secure your new apartment.
In the Cantonese language you say ‘m goi’. This is used when thanking someone for a physical gift or in formal situations. If you are thanking someone for their service then this phrase gets extended to ‘m goi nei sin’.
How to Say Thank You in Vietnamese -
Vietnamese does bare some resemblance to the languages of Thailand, Cambodia and Laos; its neighbours and conincidently popular countries along the South East Asia backpacking route.
There are lots of things to be thankful for in Vietnam, most importantly coffee! Even if you’re not a coffee lover or coffee addict you really should try Vietnamese coffee. Served in a special press with lashings of condemned milk the coffee is strong and sweet and certainly gives you a caffeine kick!
Once your coffee has arrived you should say thank you to your waitress or waiter. In Vietnam you say ‘cảm ơn bạn’ rather than thank you. They will appreciate your effort!
How to Say Thank You in Hindi
Hindi is the official language of India, despite there being over 70 different languages and dialects spoken across the subcontinent if you endeavour to speak Hindi during your travels your new friends will generally understand what you mean.
To say thank you in Hindi you should say ‘dhanyavaad’. This is written here using the latin alphabet as Hindi uses the Sanskrit alphabet. You pronounced ‘dhanyavaad’ like ‘don-he-a-bad’.
Coincidentally ‘dhanyavaad’ is also how you say thank you in Nepali too. The Nepali language is very similar to Hindi but you should endeavour to learn a little more Nepali if you visit as some Nepali people get offended by the Hindi language.
How to Say Thank You in Malaysia
We can kill two birds with one stone with this thank you. The language of Malayasia, Malay and the language of Indonesia, Bahasa are very, very similar. More similar than Hindi and Nepali in fact. As such and in this instance learning to say thank you in Malay will also have you learn how to say thank you in Bahasa too!
To say thank you in Malay you say ‘termia kasih’. This is pronounced in both Malay and Bahasa as ‘ter-i-ma kas-ee’. You can say this with the most broad American accent and no-one will mind. You will soon pick up the accent after a few days of being in town.
You can speak Malay in Malaysia and in Borneo. Borneo is mostly Malaysian owned and the other big portion is owned by Indonesia so you can mix your languages up a little in this part of the world!
How to Say Thank You in Thailand
Saying thank you in Thailand, or the Land of Smiles as it is often referred to, is easy. You should always remember to ‘wai’ when you’re in Thailand, when saying hello, goodbye and thankyou. To ‘wai’ is to join your palms together and bow your head and torso a little. This is a sign of respect not only to the person that you're talking to but as a foreigner shows respect to the culture too.
To say thank you in Thailand you say ‘kop-khun’ and then add the male or female endings. Men should say ‘kop-khun-krab’ and women should say ‘kop-khun-kaa’. It matters little the gender of the person you are addressing only your gender decides which suffix to use.
How to Say Thank You in Spanish
So many of us were taught Spanish at school but how many of us remember it now? Can you remember how to say thank you in Spanish? In case you have forgotten here it is again!
To say thank you in Spanish you say ‘gracias’. To say thank you very much you say ‘muchos gracias’, this also translates as many thanks.
To scrub up on your Spanish click here,there are so many Spanish speaking countries in the world and so many more that speak a variant of Spanish it is always good to keep a few Spanish phrases in your arsenal!
How to Say Thank You in French
Saying thank you in French is as easy as it is in Spanish. To day thank you in French you say ‘merci’ to say thank you very much you say ‘merci beaucoup’ which again, is very easy! How is your French accent? Any good?
French is another really useful language to know even a little bit of. There are many French speaking nations in Africa and even in the Caribbean too! There are always lots of French travellers on the road so to be able to communicate with them and find our their travel tips would be a big bonus!
You can test yourself with learning French on the road. There are always French books in book swaps at hotels and guesthouses! Pick one up and challenge yourself!
How to Say Thank You in Italian
There is a lot of cross-over between the French, Italian and Spanish languages. This can make them both harder and easier to learn!
The Italian word for thank you is ‘grazie’ pronounced ‘grat-see’. As you can see and hear it is quite similar to the Spanish word for thank you ‘gracias’.
If you want to extend your most sincere thanks to someone then you should say ‘molte grazie’. To offer thanks with sarcasm or in jest you can say ‘grazie tante’ which means thanks a million!
How to Say Thank You in German
To say thank you in German is easier than you may think. Simply saying ‘danke’ will mean you are extending your thanks to a German speaker. If you want to be a little more formal you can say ‘danke schön’. Unlike in French you do pronounce the ‘e’ when you speak German, so ‘danke’ is pronounced ‘dan-ka’.
To offer your most sincere gratitude to someone you can use the phrase ‘Ich bin Ihnen sehr dankbar für' or even ‘vielen dank’. These take a little more practice, especially on the accent front so give it a go, don’t be shy now!
How to Say Thank You in Russian
Russian, like German, can often sound like a harsh and aggressive language, that’s not to say the people are rude, far from it! If they were a rude nation there would be no word for thank you would there not, but all there is!
The word for thank you in Russian is ‘spasibo’ pronounced ‘spas-i-bu’. To extend even greater thanks you can say ‘spasibo bolshoi’ which means thank you very much.
The Russian language adheres to the Cyrillic alphabet so for readers of the latin alphabet (like English speakers) Russian can appear tricky to understand. Once you have your tongue wrapped about the standard letters and phonic sounds you’ll be fine!
How to Say Thank You in Hawaiian
Although part of the USA Hawaii does have its own language. Just as you say ‘ahola’ rather than hello on Hawaii, you should say ‘mahalo iā ʻoe’ rather than thank you.
The Hawaiian language bares resemblance to Polynesian languages like Maori.
How to Say Thank You in Hebrew
Hebrew is the language spoken in Israel. Isreali people say ‘toda’ instead of thank you which is really easy to remember!
Hebrew has it’s own alphabet and is not read from left to right!
How to Say Thank You in Greek
Not only in Greece will you find yourself speaking Greek! There is a big Greek expat community in Australia too! In order to say thank you to a Greek speaker you should say ‘Ευχαριστώ’ which is pronounced like this ‘eff-car-ee-STOH’.