Korean Translation Services

10 Essential Korean Phrases with Audio Files

Here we show some of the most basic Korean phrases, which you can use in everyday life and business interactions. Each boxed section has audio files and tips on pronunciation and usage.

You can scroll down or click an item in the list below to quickly jump to a particular section within this page.



How To Say Hello in Korean

Two Options: Option A has a moderately formal ending, which is suitable for most everyday interactions with customers, colleagues and strangers. Option B has a fully formal ending and is suitable for corporate settings.
When Can I Use This Phrase (Options A & B)? The phrase is an equivalent of “Hello”, “How Are You?”, “Good Morning”, “Good Afternoon”, “Good Evening”, etc. You can use it to greet someone. Note that this phrase, although an equivalent of “Hello”, is not used for starting a telephone conversation.
Pronunciation Tip: Native speakers say the whole phrase without a pause. However, if you have difficulty simulating the sound, it is perfectly fine to insert a brief pause at the position marked with a double slash “//”. Doing so may make your pronunciation better understood.

--- OPTION A (Moderately Formal) ---

Play Sound speak
Ahn Nyung // Ha Seh Yo? 안녕하세요?
Pronunciation Practice: It may be helpful to our readers if we break down the sound file into two parts. Listen to and practice the first and second parts of the phrase separately and then combine them.
First Part speak
Second Part speak
Whole Phrase speak


--- OPTION B (Fully Formal) ---

Play Sound speak
Ahn Nyung // Ha Sim Ni Ka? 안녕하십니까?
Pronunciation Practice: Listen to and practice the first and second parts of the phrase separately and then combine them.
First Part speak
Second Part speak
Whole Phrase speak




How To Say Thank You in Korean

Play Sound speak
Gam Sah // Ham Ni Da 감사합니다.
When Can I Use This Phrase? This phrase is an equivalent of “Thank You”.
Degree of Formality: The phrase shown here has a formal (polite) ending. It can be used for customers, business partners and strangers.
Pronunciation Tip: Native speakers say the whole phrase without a pause. However, if you have difficulty simulating the sound, it is perfectly fine to insert a brief pause at the position marked with a double slash “//”. Doing so may make your pronunciation better understood.
Pronunciation Practice: It may be helpful to our readers if we break down the sound file into two parts. Listen to and practice the first and second parts of the phrase separately and then combine them.
First Part speak
Second Part speak
Whole Phrase speak




How To Say Yes in Korean

<Form 1>
Play Sound speak
Yeh
<Form 2>
Play Sound speak
Neh
Important Note: There are two formal phrases meaning “Yes” in Korean: “Yeh” and "Neh". The second form, “Neh", may sound like a negative answer to speakers of some Western languages, but it also means “Yes” in Korean. Which form to use is matter of personal preference; both are used with equal frequencies.
Degree of Formality: Both are formal (polite) phrases. They can be used for customers, business partners and strangers.




How To Say No in Korean

Play Sound speak
Ah Ni Yo 아니요.
Degree of Formality: The phrase shown here is sufficiently formal (polite) to be used for customers, business partners and strangers




How To Say Excuse Me in Korean

Play Sound speak
Sil Lye // Ham Ni Da 실례합니다.
When Can I Use This Phrase? This phrase is roughly an equivalent of “Excuse me” (although the literal meaning is different). You can use it to politely get someone's attention or when you are about to cause minor inconvenience to someone. There are, however, some differences between the English and Korean phrases. The Korean phrase as shown here should not be used if you have already caused trouble (one second ago, for example); then you should say the phrase in the past tense (not shown here). Also, the Korean phrase cannot be used to indicate that you did not clearly hear what another person said.
Degree of Formality: The phrase shown here has a formal (polite) ending. It can be used for customers, business partners and strangers.
Pronunciation Tip: Native speakers say the whole phrase without a pause. However, if you have difficulty simulating the sound, it is perfectly fine to insert a brief pause at the position marked with a double slash “//”. Doing so may make your pronunciation better understood.
Pronunciation Practice: It may be helpful to our readers if we break down the sound file into two parts. Listen to and practice the first and second parts of the phrase separately and then combine them.
First Part speak
Second Part speak
Whole Phrase speak




How To Say One Moment, Please in Korean

Play Sound speak
Jam Si Man Yo 잠시만요.
When Can I Use This Phrase? This phrase is an equivalent of “One moment, please”. You can use it to ask someone to wait for a brief moment.
Degree of Formality: The phrase shown here is sufficiently formal (polite) to be used for customers, business partners and strangers




How To Say Do You Speak English? in Korean

Play Sound speak
Young Uh // Ha Seh Yo? 영어 하세요?
Degree of Formality: The phrase shown here is sufficiently formal (polite) to be used for customers, business partners and strangers
Pronunciation Tip: Native speakers say the whole phrase without a pause. However, if you have difficulty simulating the sound, it is perfectly fine to insert a brief pause at the position marked with a double slash “//”. Doing so may make your pronunciation better understood.
Pronunciation Practice: It may be helpful to our readers if we break down the sound file into two parts. Listen to and practice the first and second parts of the phrase separately and then combine them.
First Part speak
Second Part speak
Whole Phrase speak




How To Say Happy Birthday in Korean

Play Sound speak
Saeng Il // Chook Ha // Ham Ni Da 생일 축하합니다.
When Can I Use This Phrase? This phrase is an equivalent of “Happy Birthday”.
Degree of Formality: The phrase shown here is sufficiently formal (polite) to be used for most customers, business partners, etc. However, do not use this phrase for your relatives who are in your parent’s or grandparent’s generation (you should use a different phrase). Even in business settings, if the other person is clearly in your grandparent’s generation, this phrase may not sound respectful enough (but not necessarily rude, especially if they know you are a foreigner).
Pronunciation Tip: Native speakers say the whole phrase without a pause. However, if you have difficulty simulating the sound, it is perfectly fine to insert a brief pause at the positions marked with a double slash “//”. Doing so may make your pronunciation better understood.
Pronunciation Practice: It may be helpful to our readers if we break down the sound file into three parts. Listen to and practice each part of the phrase separately and then combine them.
First Part speak
Second Part speak
Third Part speak
Whole Phrase speak




How To Say Congratulations in Korean

Play Sound speak
Chook Ha // Ham Ni Da 축하합니다.
When Can I Use This Phrase? This phrase is an equivalent of “Congratulations”. You can use it to congratulate someone on anything.
Degree of Formality: The phrase shown here has a formal (polite) ending. It can be used for customers, business partners, etc.
Pronunciation Tip: Native speakers say the whole phrase without a pause. However, if you have difficulty simulating the sound, it is perfectly fine to insert a brief pause at the position marked with a double slash “//”. Doing so may make your pronunciation better understood.
Pronunciation Practice: It may be helpful to our readers if we break down the sound file into two parts. Listen to and practice the first and second parts of the phrase separately and then combine them.
First Part speak
Second Part speak
Whole Phrase speak




How To Welcome Guests in Korean

Play Sound speak
Uh Suh // O Seh Yo 어서 오세요.
When Can I Use This Phrase? This phrase is used typically in a small business setting (e.g., restaurants and shops) to welcome guests.
Degree of Formality: The phrase shown here is sufficiently formal (polite) to be used for customers.
Pronunciation Tip: Native speakers say the whole phrase without a pause. However, if you have difficulty simulating the sound, it is perfectly fine to insert a brief pause at the position marked with a double slash “//”. Doing so may make your pronunciation better understood.
Pronunciation Practice: It may be helpful to our readers if we break down the sound file into two parts. Listen to and practice the first and second parts of the phrase separately and then combine them.
First Part speak
Second Part speak
Whole Phrase speak





Brought to you by Enunce, LLC, a professional Korean translation company.

We translate legal, technical and business documents from Korean to English and from English to Korean.

당사 이넌스는 영어 번역 회사로서, 기업문서 번역, 법률 번역 및 기술 번역을 제공합니다.