Coming to China can be a little daunting, as the language system is so different from what many people have ever experienced before. However, fear not! Most people in China are very patient with foreigners and happy to help in whatever way they can to understand and communicate. What’s more, most Chinese people are thrilled if foreigners can speak even a little Mandarin, and this will get you a huge amount of kudos with your newfound Chinese friends. Below is a basic phrase guide to get you started, the Chinese characters are on top with the Romanized pinyin/phonetics in brackets below and finally the English meaning at the very bottom. Enjoy, and Zhu Ni Hao Yun (jew nee how yoon), or Good Luck!

你好

Mandarin Chinese
Taken from mandarinposter.com.

Ni hao (nee how)

Hello

你好吗?

Ni hao ma? (nee how ma?)

How are you?

我很好!

Wo hen hao (woa hen how)

I’m good, thanks!

我叫___

Wo jiao____ (woa jiow___)

My name is ____

你叫什么名字?

Ni jiao shenme mingzi? (nee jiow shenme mingzi?)

What is your name?

是的

Shi de (shi di)

Yes

不是

Bu shi (boo shi)

No

我懂了!

Wo dong le! (woa dong li!)

I understand!

我不董

Wo bu dong (woa boo dong)

I don’t understand

你说什么?

Ni shuo shenme? (nee shuo shenme?)

What did you say?

请说慢一点

Qing shuo man yidianr (ching shuo man yee deer)

Say it slowly, please

Qing (ching)

Please

谢谢

Xie xie (shay shay)

Thanks

不客气

Bu ke qi (boo ke chee)

You’re welcome

对不起

Dui bu qi (dooey boo chee)

I’m sorry

早!

Zao! (zaow)

Good Morning

下午好!

Xia wu hao (sha woo how)

Good afternoon

晚安

Wan an (wan an)

Good night

好吃

Hao chi (how chi)

It’s delicious

干杯!

Gan bei! (gan bey!)

Let’s drink (toast)

我吃素

Wo chi su (woa chi sue)

I’m a vegetarian

你会说英语吗?

Ni hui shuo yingyu ma? (nee hwui shwo ying yew ma?)

Can you speak English?

帮助一下!

Bangzhu yixia! (bangjew yeesha)

Help please!

我要

Wo yao (woa yaow)

I need

我要警察

Wo yao jingcha (woa yaow jingcha)

I need a policeman

我要医生

Wo yao yisheng (woa yaow yeesheng)

I need a doctor

我要去银行

Wo yao qu yinhang (woa yaow choo yinhang)

I need to go to the bank

我要去飞机站

Wo yao qu feiji zhan (woa yaow choo fayjee jan)

I need to go to the airport

我要去酒店

Wo yao qu jiudian (woa yaow chuu jewdian)

I need to go to the hotel

我要去医院

Wo yao qu yiyuan (woa yaow choo yeeyouwan)

I need to the hospital

我要去警察局

Wo yao qu jingcha ju (woa yaow choo jingcha joo)

I need to go to the police station

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