Greg Rodgers is a freelance writer and also photographer from Kentucky. He's been extending all things Asia for yellowcomic.com because 2010.

You are watching: How to say hello in malay


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Knowing exactly how to to speak hello in Malaysia based upon the time of work will help you break the ice v locals in a fun method while traveling in Malaysia. Back a basic "hi" or "helo" (local spelling) will work fine, practicing the greetings lock use mirrors that you have an interest in learning a bit around the neighborhood culture.


Because of the social diversity, many of the human being in Malaysia v whom you connect will speak and also understand English well. Everyone absolutely knows what "hello" means. Regardless, straightforward greetings in Bahasa Malaysia are basic to learn.


Unlike various other languages such as Thai and Vietnamese, the Malaysian language is no tonal. The rule of joint are really predictable and also straightforward. Do life also easier, Bahasa Malaysia implements the timeless Latin alphabet so acquainted to English speakers.


The Malaysian Language

The Malaysian language, frequently referred to together Bahasa Malaysia, Malay, or merely "Malaysian," is comparable to Bahasa Indonesia in countless ways and also is understood in neighboring countries such together Indonesia,Brunei, and also Singapore. Locally, the language is generally referred to just as "Bahasa."


Bahasa means "language" and is frequently used standalone when referring to the entire family of comparable Malay languages talked in southeast Asia.


Malay (Bahasa Melayu) and also variations are talked by end 290 million world in Malaysia, Indonesia, Brunei, and Singapore. It's additionally used in components of the Philippines and the southern component of Thailand. The indigenous you learn in this functional language will come in handy anywhere the region!


A nation as diverse as Malaysia will inevitably be home to countless dialects and also variations the the regional language, specifically the furthermore you take trip from Kuala Lumpur. The regional dialects in Borneo won"t sound an extremely familiar at all. Not everyone you satisfy speaks the same flavor the Bahasa Malaysia.


together in Bahasa Malaysia

Unlike in English, vowel pronunciation in the Malaysian language generally, loosely follows these simple guidelines:


A — sounds favor "ah"E — sounds like "uh"I — sounds like "ee"O — sounds prefer "oh"U — sounds prefer "ew"

speak Hello

As in Indonesia, you say hello in Malaysia based on the time of day. Greetings correspond v morning, afternoon, and also evening, although over there aren't really hard guidelines for what time to switch over.


All greetings in Malaysia begin with words selamat (sounds favor "suh-lah-mat"), i beg your pardon also method "safe." Selamat is then complied with with the appropriate phase of the day:


Good Morning: Selamat pagi (sounds prefer "pag-ee")Good Afternoon: Selamat tengah hari (sounds favor "teen-gah har-ee")Good Afternoon/Evening: Selamat Petang (sounds like "puh-tong")Good Night: Selamat Malam (sounds prefer "mah-lahm")

As with all languages, formalities are regularly simplified to conserve effort. Girlfriend will periodically greet each various other by dropping the selamat and also offering a simple pagi — the indistinguishable of greeting someone with "morning" in English. You'll likewise sometimes hear world shortening a greeting through simply simply saying selamat.


Note: Selamat siang (good day) and selamat sore (good afternoon) are much more commonly used when greeting world in Bahasa Indonesia, no the Malaysian language — back they will certainly be understood.


time of Day for Greetings

Even locals from different parts of Malaysia differ in their usage, therefore don't concern too much around when afternoon official fades into evening. If friend guess wrong, who will probably reply with the exactly greeting.


Informally, you need to use selamat pagi (good morning) until the sunlight is gaining really hot, about 11 a.m. Or noon. ~ that, switch to selamat tengah hari (good afternoon). After ~ the sun has actually peaked, maybe around 3 p.m., you have the right to switch to selamat petang (good so late afternoon or evening). Use selamat malam (good night) once you are leaving in ~ night or going to sleep.


Generally speaking, Malaysians don't greet each various other with selamat malam. Friend can proceed to speak selamat petang also at night till retiring for the day.


The Catchall Greeting

If all else fails or you space unsure about the time that day, a basic "hello" will job-related throughout Malaysia.


Generic greetings such together "hi" or "hello" aren't formal, yet locals will regularly use them as soon as greeting friends and also familiar people.


You'll have much more fun and also be an ext polite by greeting people using among the standardization greetings that are based upon time of day.


continuing the Conversation

After you say hello in Malaysia, it is in polite and ask how someone is doing. Together in English, asking someone "how room you?" have the right to also dual as a greeting if you desire to forego deciding on the time of day.


Ideally, their solution will be kabar baik (sounds favor "ka-bar bike"), which way "fine" or "well." You need to respond v the same if request apa kabar? Saying baik double is another means to suggest that you are doing simply fine.


If who replies to her apa kabar? v tidak baik (sounds choose "tee-dak bike") or anything else that begins with tidak, they may not gift doing for this reason well.


various other Potential Greetings

When beginning or returning, you could potentially hear this friendly greetings in Malaysia:


Goodbye (if you are the one leaving): selamat tinggal (sounds like "teen-gahl")Goodbye (if the other human being is leaving): selamat jalan (sounds like "jal-lan")

In the context of goodbyes, tinggal means "stay" and also jalan way "travel." In various other words, you are telling someone to have a good/safe remain or a good/safe travel.

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For a fun means to speak goodbye come a friend, usage jumpa lagi (sounds like "joom-pah lah-gee"), which means "see you around" or "meet again." Sampai jumpa (sounds favor "sahm-pie joom-pah") will likewise work as a "see friend later," but it's an ext commonly heard in Indonesia.


speak Goodnight

Ordinarily, you would say selamat malam in ~ the end of the day as soon as leaving or going come bed. When actually going come sleep, you can say the final goodnight v selamat tidur. Words tidur means "sleep."