Bahasa Malaysia

Bahasa Malaysia, which is essentially Bahasa Melayu (the language of the Malays), is the national language of the country.

Although the Malay language is the national and official language, English is widely understood and spoken in the main towns of Malaysia. This is because Malaysia was a colony of Great Britain until its independence in 1957.

Malaysia is made up of many races and ethnic groups with the Malays, Chinese, Indians, Ibans and Kadazans comprising the major races. Being multi-racial and multi-ethnic, it is therefore also multi-lingual, and there are many languages and scores of dialects found in the country.

The Malays themselves in some of the states, also speak various dialects, with Kelantan, Kedah, Negeri Sembilan, Penang and Terengganu dialects being quite distinctly pronounced.

There are also differences in the Chinese language spoken in the country. Besides Mandarin (formal language) you will hear various dialects spoken like Hokkien, Hakka and Cantonese.

And although the Malaysian Indians speak Tamils mostly, you can find or hear Telugu, Malayalam, Punjabi and Hindi also spoken.

Some Useful Words

Below are some of the useful and simple Bahasa Malaysia words and phrases to get by, while in Pahang or Malaysia.


One - Satu 
Two - Dua 
Three - Tiga 
Four - Empat 
Five - Lima 
Six - Enam 
Seven - Tujuh 
Eight - Lapan 
Nine - Sembilan
Ten - Sepuluh

Thank you - Terima kasih 
Please - Tolong 
Excuse me - Maafkan saya

Yes - Ya 
No - Tidak 
Maybe - Mungkin

I (me) - Saya 
We - Kami 
You - Awak / kamu / anda 
They / them - Mereka 
He / she - Dia

How much? - Berapa? 
What is this? - Apakah ini? 
What time is it? - Pukul berapa sekarang? 
Where is...? - Di manakah... ? 

Good morning - Selamat pagi 
Good afternoon - Selamat tengahari 
Good evening - Selamat petang 
Goodnight - Selamat malam 
Goodbye - Selamat tinggal 
Welcome - Selamat datang
See you again - Jumpa lagi

Day - Hari
Week - Minggu 
Month - Bulan 
Year - Tahun

Today - Hari ini 
Yesterday - Semalam 
Tomorrow - Esok

Monday - Isnin 
Tuesday - Selasa 
Wednesday - Rabu 
Thursday - Khamis 
Friday - Jumaat 
Saturday - Sabtu 
Sunday - Ahad

Well, you will find in Malaysia and in Pahang a potpourri of cultures and languages, and what is amazing is that all races and ethnic groups respect the beliefs, culture, language and dialect of the others.

Through it all, Bahasa Malaysia, the official language, seamlessly unites them.

And with unity, it is no wonder then that progress and development can be easily achieved.


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