Thai Language Basics Part II

1 Jan 2017

In our last article, we looked at introducing yourself in Thai. A great start to being friendly and making friends with the people you see everyday on the island.

Now, we will look at asking for things and learn a little bit about the structure of Thai. Again, it's not about being perfect. Just about making an effort. Plus it's always interesting to learn about a new langauge. Thai is really different to English so it's great to get an insight into the Thai way of speaking....

  1. “Can I have…………..”


pronounced KHORR


For example, you go into a restaurant or you're at Thong Sala food market…


You: Sawasdee kha (Female) / khrap (Male)  [hello]

Waiter/Waitress: Sawasdee kha / khrap [hello]

You: Khor pad thai    /      khor beer Leo   /     Khor tom yam seafood

2. Numbers 1 - 10


1 = neung


2= song


3 = saam


4 = see


5 = hah (easiest one to remember! Like Ha ha ha)


6 = hog


7 = jed


8 = bad


9 = gaew


10 = sip



One of the most interesting things in Thai language is the use of ‘classifiers’.

When asking for something - using ‘khor’ - which we learnt above, Thai people will ask for what they want, how many of this item they want and it’s classifier.

You can think of classifiers as either categories or containers.

So, when asking for a beer you would say

“khor” - “can I have”


followed by the item    -   “beer Leo”

followed by the amount  - one / two / three (neung / song / saam)

Followed by the classifier -  bottle/s (khuad)


All together:

“Khor beer Leo neung khuad”

Khuad is pronounced like KOO-WAD

Meaning - can I have a Leo beer, one bottle.


:-D don’t forget to use polite particles - kha for a woman and khrap for a man :-D

Asking for a pad thai you would say

“khor” - “can I have”  


Followed by the item -  “pad thai”

Followed by the amount - “neung”

Followed by the classifier - “plate/s” (djaan)


“Khor pad thai neung djaan”




“Khor pizza neung djaan”......

Asking for a bottle of water- 

“Khor naam neung khuad”

Naam = water

Neung khuad = one bottle

It's always the same format: 


Some common classifiers:

Khuad (pronounced KOO-WAD)   - bottle

Djaan (pronounced DJAAAH-N) - plate (with something on it)

Gaew - glass (with something in it)

Aan - small items / things

Khon (pronounced KON) - people (this is also the word for people)


:-D    if in doubt say 'aan' for 'things'    :-D 

Hope you enjoyed this article finding out more about Thai. See how you get on. Give one or two of the sentences a try! Good luck!