Many travellers have a bucket list of must-visit attractions, regional food, and indigenous experiences to shot before lock visit Indonesia. However your ready is not finish without these straightforward Indonesian phrases to help you follow me your travels.

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Essential words and also phrases may not it is in on your packing list but they are vital part the your take trip plans. Questioning for direction may acquire you native points A come B, yet doing therefore in the neighborhood language can mean a brand-new friendship (or at least a glimpse of the famous Indonesian smile). Learning these simple Bahasa Indonesia phrases is not only for practicality, it also shows your actual interest and also respect for regional people. Below are 21 important phrases you’ll require in Indonesia.


Permisi (per-mee-see) / pardon me to speak this Indonesian phrase prior to initiating communication with someone and also you’ll acquire their attention. ‘Permisi’ additionally works as soon as you obtain in someone’s means in a crowded tourist destination.

Terima kasih (te-ree-ma ka-seeh) / give thanks to you yes no favour too tiny to deserve a ‘terima kasih’. Even if it is a local has actually helped you with directions or after ~ receiving your items in a local shop, speak this expression with a smile.

Ya – Tidak (ya – tee-dak) / correctly – no These an easy affirmative and an unfavorable words deserve to go a long method when responding come anything, be it a generous market for items or solutions or an invitation for drinks.

Sama-sama (saa-maa saa-maa) / you welcome also if a neighborhood says ‘thank you’ rather of ‘terima kasih’, surprised them through replying through ‘sama-sama’. Because that that, you will do it be granted a sweet laugh from the locals.

Saya tidak mengerti (saa-yha tee-dah me-nger-tee) / i don’t understand numerous Indonesians speak English fine enough, particularly in touristy locales. However if you still don’t gain what they’re speak or if castle enthusiastically speak come you in words girlfriend don’t quite understand, to speak this phrase politely.


Di mana toilet? (dee maa-naa toilet?) / where is the bathroom? once nature calls and you can’t discover a sign saying ‘WC’, ‘Toilet’, or ‘Kamar Mandi’, nothing panic. Ask who this simple question and also they’d it is in happy to present you the means to the nearest bathroom.

Belok kiri, belok kanan (bae-lok kee-ree, be-lok kaa-naan) / turn left, revolve right learning these phrases will not only assist you understand when people are telling you directions, but it will certainly also assist you communicate with vehicle drivers (assuming you understand where to walk or have actually a map).

Dekat, jauh (dhe-kat, jaa-wuh) / near, far The measure up of street in Indonesia is rather subjective, yet the information may be helpful when questioning for directions and also it’s common for locals to express size this way.

Saya mau pesan (saa-yaa maaw pe-san) / I desire to order nothing just allude at the menu. When the waiter concerns take her order, at least try to speak the phrase ‘saya mau pesan’ prior to pointing it out – or go the end on a body and challenge yourself to read the dishes’ names out loud.

Jangan terlalu pedas (jaa-ngan ter-laa-luw pe-dash) / don’t do it as well spicy as soon as a restaurant in Indonesia states or signals that a dish is spicy (usually with a chilli symbol on the menu), just take their word for it. For many, Indonesia’s definition of spicy may equate come ‘tongue-burning’. This expression will conserve both her tongue and also belly!

Enak (e-nak) / delicious practice this word as you’ll be triggered to say it a lot when sampling scrumptious Indonesian dishes. Pause from placing food into your mouth and also throw in a thumbs-up gesture once saying it.


Berapa harganya? (be-raa-paa harr-gah-nyaa) / how much is this? do it a habit to ask exactly how much points cost prior to agreeing top top a transaction to stop being scammed. Better yet, shot saying it in the indigenous language and establish a respectful communication with the vendors.

Terlalu mahal (ter-laa-luw maa-haal) / too expensive It’s it s okay to tell her sellers the something is as well expensive. It probably is. The next step would be to bargain for a better price.

Boleh kurang? (bo-leh koo-rang?) / deserve to I get it for less? you will do it hear this phrase echoing throughout traditional markets. The trick is come haggle hard at an initial and then let the bargain go increase slowly as to not cause sellers to lose face.

Ini, itu (ee-nee, ee-two) / this one, that one A basic this or that may aid a lot through a wide variety of items on display screen at the neighborhood market. Make sure the seller knows which item you’re bargaining for.


Nama kamu siapa? (naa-maa kaa-moo see-a-pa) / what is her name? questioning for someone’s name is a common way to strike up a friendship in Indonesia. It’s taken into consideration polite and also courteous come exchange names when shaking hands.

Nama saya … (naa-maa saa-yaa …) / my name is … Alternatively, friend can additionally say your name very first while offering your ideal hand for a handshake. Every little thing else is straightforward after that.

Salam kenal (saa-laam ke-nal) / pretty to fulfill you It’s common courtesy come say this expression after you satisfy someone because that the an initial time, either via message or face to face.

Bule Bule is a generic term to explain foreigners, specifically those who are Caucasian-looking. That not expected to be derogatory, although some foreign tourists have discovered it racialism or inappropriate. The reality is, most of the time it’s just a common descriptive term used among locals.

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For emergencies “Tolong” (tho-long) way help, and can be offered for interjection to get attention once you need urgent help. “Panggil polisi” (paang-geel po-lee-see) method call the police.

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