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Thai Language – Part 3: General Phrases and Vocabulary

Knowing some Muay Thai terminology is great when you’re living and training at a gym and talking mostly to Thai trainers, fighters, and other visiting Muay Thai enthusiasts. But, chances are, you’re going to have to head out of the camp area at least a few times to buy food, go shopping, or sight-see.  Knowing Muay Thai terminology won’t help you much when you’re outside a training and fighting environment. However, knowing some general phrases and vocabulary can get you to communicate what you want and maybe even out of the stickiest of situations.

Imagine going to Thailand and asking a question in English, and getting a reaction that’s a mix of shame and confusion from not understanding. Most locals, aside from those that are used to dealing with tourists on a daily basis, will have trouble communicating with you if you can only speak English. Being that most serious gyms are not in a touristy-area due to not wanting to allow their fighters to be distracted, chances are you will run into a lot of communication issues if you don’t learn at least a few words and phrases to get you by.

Some things to note:
-Words starting with the /r sound are often interchanged to the /l sound, such as “raeng” pronounced “laeng”.
-Don’t forget to add ka or khrap at the end of all questions and statements to sound polite!
-Refer to Thai Language – Part 1: Basic Rules & FAQ’s for a refresher course for Thai language basics

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Any words and phrases that are *bolded with asterisks* will be ones you will hear most commonly in Thailand.



Family & Relationships

family 1

family 2


Please note that there is not way I can include ALL jobs and occupations in this article. I picked them from most common lists and also most commonly known lists.

occupations 1

occupations 2

Numbers & Currency
numbers 1 numbers 2

Question Words
question words


Please note that there is no way I can include ALL countries and territories in this article.


General Conversation

conversation 1

conversation 2

conversation 3


shopping 1

Getting Places

transport 1

transport 2

Food & Eating

food 1

food 2

food 3

Going Out

nightlife 1


In case of emergency, please call one of the following numbers right away:

Emergency Services Telephone
Tourist Police 1155
Police (General Emergency Call) 191
Ambulance and Rescue 1554
Fire 199
National Disaster Warning Centre 1860
Crime 1195
Medical Emergency Call 1669



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Thumbnail photo by Aleksandar Popovski.

Fighter, social media manager, content creator and writer. Currently training and fighting full time in Bangkok. Originally from NYC.

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