Yes! 7.7 out of 10 and Indonesia is wearing the crown as The Most Beautiful place on earth. The website has elected Indonesia the most beautiful country in the world based on its natural wonders. From tropical forests to coral reefs teeming with life, volcanoes, and more, Indonesia has a lot to offer. But what makes this country even more beautiful is its people. And there is no better way to meet them than knowing the basics of the Indonesian language.

Indonesia is home to over 17.000 amazing islands. Each island has its own or even multiple languages. However, Bahasa Indonesia is the National language. It unites the people around Indonesia. Indonesians are humble and appreciative of foreigners who can speak Bahasa Indonesia. Bahasa Indonesia is not as difficult as many foreign languages, like verbs, are not conjugated as in English and French. The alphabet is also the same as the English alphabet.

Can you imagine if you can say some words in Bahasa Indonesia, your vacation will be so much fun! There are a few different ways that people can address you. Here, we stick to Saya/Kamu (I/you). Let’s have a look at this simple conversation.

  • Hi, apa kabar? / Hi, how are you?
  • Saya baik / I am good.
  • Siapa nama kamu? / What’s your name?
  • Nama saya Wayan / My name is Wayan.
  • Dari mana asal kamu? / Where are you from?
  • Saya dari Australia / I am from Australia.
Street shop around Ubud
Meet the locals with a few simple words

Useful Bahasa Indonesia expressions

The word that you will learn and hear a lot here is Terima Kasih, which means Thank You. No worries if you cannot pronounce it well because it’s too long, you can just say Makasih.

  • Terima kasih / Thank you
  • Excuse me / Permisi
  • Good morning / Selamat pagi
  • Good afternoon / Selamat siang
  • Good evening / Selamat malam
  • Good night / Selamat tidur

Numbers in Indonesia

Knowing how to count in Indonesian will be useful for ordering in a restaurant or buying something in a shop. Here are the basics.

  1. Satu
  2. Dua
  3. Tiga
  4. Empat
  5. Lima
  6. Enam
  7. Tujuh
  8. Delapan
  9. Sembilan
  10. Sepuluh

100. Seratus (satu ratus), 200. dua ratus, …
1,000. Seribu (satu ribu), 2,000. dua ribu, …
1,000,000. Sejuta (satu juta), 2,000,000 dua juta, …

Ubud traditional market
Traditional market in Ubud

Going to a souvenir shop or a traditional market is the best way to practice your Bahasa because some of the sellers can’t speak English (especially in Java). Here’s the most basic phrase if you’re in a traditional market:

Berapa harganya? / How much does it cost?

The word “harga” means price, and the “-nya” it is referring to a specific thing that you’re pointing out or asking.

And the seller usually will reply with the amount.

Lima puluh ribu / Fifty thousand (five ten thousand)

Most of the time you can bargain and ask for a lower price from them. Just ask questions for a discount. In Bahasa Indonesia discount has the same word which is diskon and the seller will automatically understand you.

Most Indonesians will understand formal Indonesian grammar as well as the simple version. Once you master the questions about your name, where you are from, and asking prices, you will be way better than the other foreigners. 

Of course, we don’t expect you to speak fluently Indonesian. To understand even more the local culture, we work with Indonesian guides who speak English, French, German, Spanish and many other languages.


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