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  • EunHo

15 Useful Korean Phrases for Korean Learners

Updated: Aug 17, 2023

안녕하세요(Annyeonghaseyo)! I'm EunHo(은호) from India(인도)! I'm learning Korean(한국어) since 1 year(1년) and can write a 150 word paragraph easily 😅.

(Disclaimer: These phrases are informal and are strictly restricted to friends and younger people you are familiar with. Never use them to strangers as they are consided rude)

Shall we begin ? 시작할까요?

1. 안녕(Annyeong)

'안녕' means both 'Hi' and 'Bye' in Korean. Yeah it's that simple! But remember, while greeting someone you're not close enough or they're older than you, you should use 안녕하세요(Annyeonghaseyo) or 안녕하십니까(Anneonghashibnikka). But the same cannot be used to say goodbye.

I would recommend you to use 안녕히계세요(Annyeonghigyeseyo) or 봐요(Tto pwawo) whenever you need to say goodbye. Whereas 안녕히계세요 simply means Bye(formal), the later literally translates to 'See you again'.

2. 응/아니 (Eung/Ani)

means yes and 아니 means no. However if someone texts you ㅇㅇ don't panic cause it actually means yes or okay depending on the context. Again, limit these phrases strictly to family and friends! You can use (ye) for yes and 이니요(Aniyo) for no in formal talks.

3. 뭐해? (Mwohae?)

Koreans use '뭐해?' usually to start a conversation. It literally translates to 'What are you doing?' in English(영어). You can use this phrase during both real-conversations or while texting.

4. 잘 지내? (Jaal Jinae?)

잘 지내? literally translates to 'Have you been well?'. You can add this phrase after saying 안녕(means Hi). Let's look at this following conversation between two friends who are meeting after a summer break

민규: 안녕! 잘 지내?

현진: 어! 너? 잘 지내?


MINGYU : Hi! Have you been well?

HYEONJIN: Yeah! You? Have you been well?

There are a few different ways you can respond to this! Check here for some other reponses you can use.

5. 잘 잤어? (Jaal Jasseo?)

'잘 잤어?' literally translates to 'Did you sleep well?'. You can use this phrase to your friend or girlfriend or boyfriend (if you have any 😁) or your siblings to wish them Good Morning.

In many Korean-learning textbooks you'll find 좋은 아침 (Joheun Achim) but you necessarily don't need to use them to the above people. However using '잘 잤어?' for your parents is not recommended.

You can just use 좋은 아침 in formal cases.

6. 잘 자 (Jal ja)

'잘 자' can be used to say Good Night to your younger siblings or friends. It literally translates to 'Sleep Well'. Don't use this to your parents; especially a Korean mom unless you want a flying slipper landing on your face(don't take it seriously 😂). Anyway, don't use it with your mom!

7. 제발 (Jebal)

제발 means Please in Korean. This is casual form and can be used with anyone in the family (unless they're are very strict). Never use this to your teacher or someone you respect and has no connection as your family. However you can use 제발 with a teacher or someone you respect who is really close to you.

mI guess in this entire blog, 제발 can be

most widely used.

감사합니다 (Gamsahamnida) for reading until here. The second part will be released soon. If you know any more phrases like these, please leave a comment down.

Like if you appreciate it and share it if you found it informative.

For any queries you can follow me and DM me on my personal Instagram account @__an_idiosyncratic__

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1 Comment

I didn’t know that you can’t use 잘자 with your mom 😂

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