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Travel destination: Philippines! (Learning Basic tagalog words)

Updated on August 29, 2011

Basic tagalog words to learn when in the Philippines

Remember that most Filipinos can speak and understand English, but these basic tagalong words can come really handy when you’re in Manila or any part of the Archipelago. ( Mabuhay!)

English                  Tagalog
Welcome                  Mabuhay
Hi or Hello              Kamusta
How are you?             Kamusta ka?
What’s your name         Anong pangalan mo?
Where                    Saan or nasaan
Who                      Sino
How much                 Magkano
When                     Kailan
Why                      Bakit
Eyes                     Mata
Ears                     Tenga
Nose                     Ilong
Mouth                    Bibig
Hands                    Kamay
Feet                     Paa
Girl                     Babae
Boy                      Lalake
Child                    Bata
Money                    Pera
Buy                      Bili
Clothes                  Damit
Morning                  Umaga
Afternoon                Tanghali
Evening                  Gabi
Tomorrow                 Bukas
Week                     Linggo
Month                    Buwan
Father                   Tatay
Mother                   Nanay
Sibling                  Kapatid
Son or daughter          Anak
House                    Bahay
Church                   Simabahan
Shower / Bath            Ligo
Water                    Tubig
Food                     Pagkain
House                    Bahay
Mahal Kita               I Love You
Thank you                Salamat

This is just a handful,but I am sure you can survive Manila when armed with these basic, everyday-spoken tagalong words. Of course, there’s the more complete English-tagalog dictionary where you can learn more words, even phrases and/or sentences. (Can be found in any of the national bookstore branches or powerbooks stores in the Metropolis)

Its fun to speak tagalong and almost all Filipinos love to hear foreigners speaking our language!

Goodluck on your study!


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    • Jack Burton profile image

      Jack Burton 9 years ago from The Midwest

      My first Tagalog words I learned were Mahal Kita and that got me in so much trouble that I wound up being married to her for 34 years now.


      My lovely wife is from the Philippines, and this old farm boy from southern Illinois had to learn to eat a lot of strange food that I had never dreamed existed. Some of it I don't even want to think about. :)

      You’re welcome to mouse over to my hub and take a look at how a traditional Filipino recipe is looked at through American eyes.

    • Cellebrate! profile image

      Cellebrate! 9 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      hahaha! I love your humor!

      Well, I guess the first tagolog words you've learned are still very much in practise, as we speak! ( Thats the upside of being to get romantic all your life!!!)

      Will surely look through your hubs.

      God bless you and enjoy the Filipino dishes! (They maybe strange at first, but once you get the hang of it, you will go back for more!)

    • markuz182 profile image

      markuz182 8 years ago


      thanx for the comment, do you have messenger

      what if chat a little¿?¿?¿

    • Cellebrate! profile image

      Cellebrate! 8 years ago from Manila, Philippines


      you can use my email addy

    • profile image

      sai 8 years ago


    • Cellebrate! profile image

      Cellebrate! 8 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      hi sai: konnichiwa, mabuhay

    • BudBrown profile image

      BudBrown 8 years ago from California

      Thanks for the good list of Tagalog words. I have been married to a wonderful Filipina for 37 years. At home we speak English and Tagalog. I hope your post will encourage many more to learn this great language.

    • Cellebrate! profile image

      Cellebrate! 8 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      Thanks Budbrown. Lucky and blessed to have for a wife a Filipina. Truly caring, I bet. God bless your home.

    • kaiserthesage profile image

      kaiserthesage 8 years ago from Philippines

      I enjoyed reading this. Thanks.

    • Cellebrate! profile image

      Cellebrate! 8 years ago from Manila, Philippines


      thank you. ( salamat)

    • profile image

      BALGAN 8 years ago

      I am half Puerto Rican & I love how Spanish & Tagalog are some what similar.However,I want to learn more Tagalog.PUEDE AYUDAME POR FAVOR?

    • Cellebrate! profile image

      Cellebrate! 8 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      Balgan, puede!!!! no problemo

    • profile image

      Eugene 7 years ago

      Interesting. I recognize this "Magkano" from some days long ago from a number of Filipinos in Canada I knew. It was always about money and they looked at me strangely as to how I knew that.

    • profile image

      alexa ivey 7 years ago

      the very first word that i learned was mahal kita. i learned it from my amazing boyfriend. he is the best thing that has ever happened to me. now i have been studing tagalog for 5 weeks. i am pretty good at it now. :)

    • Cellebrate! profile image

      Cellebrate! 5 years ago from Manila, Philippines

      Alexa ivy -- magaling ka na mag Tagalog?

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