Useful words and phrases in Bahasa Indonesia

You may be fortunate to be armed with an expansive Bahasa Indonesia vocabulary at your disposal when you first arrive in Jakarta, however, it is more likely that your proficiency of the language will be a little less sophisticated. If this is the case, then perhaps the following list of words will get you started and help you navigate your way around a little more easily.

This sign translates as, 'parking is prohibited in front of this house except for guests'.
This sign translates as, ‘parking is prohibited in front of this house except for guests’.

When you are keen to further your knowledge of this wonderful language, why not purchase one (or many) of the user-friendly language books that are available in all good book stores or alternatively, enrol in a language class.

Good luck and have fun!
(or in Bahasa Indonesia, Selamat mencoba dan bersenang- senang!)

Kosa kata (vocabulary)
Hello: Hai
How are you? Apa kabar?
I’m fine: Baik/ Baik-baik saja
I’m ok: Lumayan
I’m not well: Saya kurang sehat
Good morning (until 10am) : Selamat pagi
Good morning/afternoon (from 10am to 3pm): Selamat siang
Good afternoon (from 3pm – 6pm): Selamat sore
Good evening (from 6pm): Selamat malam
Good night (when going to bed): Selamat tidur
See you later: Sampai jumpa nanti
See you tomorrow: Sampai jumpa besok
My name is: Nama saya
What is your name? Siapa nama anda?
Thank you: Terima kasih
You’re welcome: Sama-sama/Kembali
Please: Tolong (when you are asking someone to do something for you)
Please: Silakan (when you are asking someone to help them self)
Yes: Ya
No: Tidak (or bukan to negate a noun)
How much is this? Berapa harganya? or, Berapa ongkos? (When inquiring about the cost of a service)
Where is..? Dimana
What is this? Apa ini?
I’m thirsty: Saya haus
I’m hungry: Saya lapar
I would like to eat: Saya mau makan
I would like to have something to eat: Saya mau makanan
I would like to drink: Saya mau minum
I would like to have something to drink: Saya mau minuman
Hot: Panas
Cold: Dingin
Turn left: Belok kiri
Turn right: Belok kanan
Go straight: Lurus
Continue onwards: Terus
Please wait here: Tolong tunggu disini
Enter: Masuk
Exit: Keluar
Open: Buka
Closed: Tutup
Mother or Madam (respectful term): Ibu (or Bu for short)
Father or Sir (respectful term): Bapak (or Pak for short)

Knowing a bit of Bahasa Indonesia will get you the all-important things in life, like coffee! ‘Selamat pagi! Saya mau satu cappuccino panas, terima kasih’.

0 nol/ kosong
1 satu
2 dua
3 tiga
4 empat
5 lima
6 enam
7 tujuh
8 delapan
9 sembilan
10 sepuluh
11 sebelas
12 dua belas
20 dua puluh
30 tiga puluh
100 seratus
1000 seribu
1 000 000 sejuta

Words: Jo  Photography: a journey bespoke


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