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Filipino Useful Words and Phrases

There are words that you will repeatedly hear being used by native Tagalog speakers. Some of them have really no direct translation in other languages so that we can only surmise their approximate meaning in other languages. Here are a few words and phrases that you will often hear being used by Filipinos when they are talking. I have given their approximate meanings and used them in simple sentences.

Audio: Click on the Play button below to hear the native
Filipino speaker read the sentences correctly.

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sandali lang - just a moment
Sandali lang at magbibihis ako. Just a moment while I dress up.

teka - wait
Teka, saan ko ba naiwan ang payong ko? Wait, where did I leave my umbrella?

teka lang - wait a while
Teka lang at may iaayos pa ako. Wait a while as I'm still working on something.

Teka muna - wait a minute
Teka muna, saan ba tayo pupunta? Wait a minute, where are we going?

at saka - and
Ito at saka ito at saka iyan. This one and this one and that one.

saka na lang - maybe next time
Saka na lang tayo lumakad. Maybe next time we can go out.

muna - first
Inumin mo muna ang gatas mo. Drink your milk first.

pa - more
isa pa nga. One more please.
Dagdagan mo pa ng isa. Add still one more.

pa - still
Doon ka pa ba nakatira? Do you still live there?
Hindi pa tapos ang ginagawa ko. What I'm working on is not yet complete.

paki - please
Paki abot naman ng eraser. Can you please give me the eraser?

na - already
Tapos na ang palabas. The show has already ended.
Ikaw na ang susunod. Already, you're the next one.
Handa ka na ba? Are you ready now?

ng - of
takip ng bote - bottle cap
upos ng sigarilyo - cigarette butt
tawag ng tanghalan - call of the theater

ba - used to mean is or are in a question
Matagal ka na ba dito? Have you been here for long?
Tapos ka na ba? Are you finished?

nga - really
Alin nga ba ang ginawa ko? Which one did I really make?
Ikaw nga ba iyan? Is that really you?

nga - then
Ikaw na nga ang magsabi sa kanya. Then, you be the one to tell her.
Ayoko na ngang tumulong. I don't want to help then.

naman - again
Ikaw na naman. It is you again.

naman - this time
Ikaw naman ang magbantay. You guard the place this time.
Pakiusod naman ang mesa. Can you this time please move the table?

lang - only
Minsan lang kitang makausap. Only once can I talk with you.
Sampu lang ang inorder ko nito. I ordered only ten of these.

pwede - can
Pwedeng magtanong? Can I ask a question?
Pwedeng-pwede. Yes, you very well can.

payag - agree
Payag ka ba na sumama sa akin? Do you agree to come with me?
Walang papayag sa ganyang plano. No one will agree with that plan.

bawal - not allowed
Bawal ang magdala ng baril sa loob. Guns are not allowed inside.


pala - so
Ganyan pala ang magmahal. So that is how one falls in love.
Ikaw pala yung sinasabi nila. So it was you they were talking of.

para - for
Para saan ang mga gamit na ito? For what are these things?

para - like
Parang kidlat ang bilis ng mga pangyayari. Events happened as fast as the lightning.

pare - buddy
Sama ka sa aming uminom, pare. Come with us for a drink, buddy.

sana - My hope
Sana ay magkita pa tayo ulit. My hope is that we will see each other once more.

pero - but
Sasama sana ako pero may biglang nangyari. I was supposed to come with you but something came up.

minsan - once
Nagkita lang kami minsan. We only saw each other once.
Minsan pa ay balikan natin ang mga pangyayari. Once more let's go back to the events.

talaga - really
Talaga bang ayaw mo nang kumain? Don't you really want to eat anymore?

sobra - too much
Sobrang taas ng mga presyo ngayon. Prices nowadays are too high.

kulang - lacking
Kulang pa ng asin ang niluluto mong pagkain. The food that you are cooking still lacks salt.

grabe - really worse
Grabe ang lagay ng kaibigan ko sa ospital. My friend in the hospital is in a really worse condition.
Grabe ang trapik ngayon sa Maynila. The traffic situation now in Manila is really worse.

baka - maybe
Baka may makakita sa atin. Someone might see us.
Ingatan mo ang paglakad dahil baka ka madapa. Be careful in your walking because you might fall down.

ayos lang - just fine or OK
Ayos lang ako dito. I'm just fine here.

ayoko - I don't like
Ayokong kumain ng prutas. I don't like to eat fruits.
Ayoko na sa iyo. I don't like you anymore.

gusto - like
Gusto kong maglakad tuwing umaga. I like to walk every morning.
Gustong-gusto kita. I like you very much.

tuwi - every time
Nagsisimba ang pamilya tuwing Linggo ng umaga. The family goes to church every Sunday morning.


may - there is or there are
May tao ba sa loob ng bahay? Is there someone inside the house?
May pagtingin ka ba sa akin? Do you care about me?

meron - there is
Meron daw nagmumulto sa bahay na iyan. It is said that there is a ghost haunting that house.

wala - none
Wala na bang natitirang pagkain? Isn't there any more food left?
Wala na akong pera. I don't have any money anymore.

type mo - do you like
Type mo bang mag ice cream? Do you like to eat ice cream?

sige - go ahead
Sige lumakad ka na. Go ahead you can leave now.

sige - so long
Sige at sana ay magkita tayong muli. So long and I hope we will meet each other once more.

sige lang - go ahead, it's OK
Sige lang, ituloy mo na ang ginagawa mo. It's Ok, go on with what you are doing.

sige na nga - alright I agree
Sige na nga sasama na ako sa iyo. Alright I will go with you now.

daw - so they say
Tuloy daw tayo bukas. They say that we will go ahead with the plan tomorrow.
Pumila daw tayo sabi ng gwardiya. The guard says that we should go in the line.

sayang - it's a waste, it's a pity
Sayang lang ang panahon na iuukol mo sa babaeng iyan. It's a waste the time you will spend for that woman.
Sayang, muntik na akong tumama sa lotto. It's a waste, I almost won in the lottery.

talo - stand to lose
Talo tayo pag natuloy ang balak na iyan. We will be at the losing end if that plan pushes through.

panalo - it's a win
Pare, panalo ang chicks na iyan. Hey buddy, that girl is a real win.

Salamat - thanks
Salamat ha! Thanks a lot!

So those are words and phrases that are often used by the native Tagalog speakers. It would be good if you can familiarize yourselves with these words and phrases. You may have a liking for a particular word or phrase so go ahead, use a few of them once in a while. Filipinos will be surprised to hear non-native speakers use them.

We have come to the end of another lesson in learning the Tagalog language. I hope this lesson will be of particular use to all of you. Thanks for listening and have a good day.


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