Interested in Singapore's local lingo, Singlish (aka Singapore Colloquial English)? Pick up these Singlish words and successfully blend in like a local.
The quintessential Singlish you'll need to know when you interact with the uncles and aunties* of the city. To master Singlish you’ll need to mash up a few languages, specifically English, Mandarin, Hokkien and Malay.
Uncles and Aunties: Gentlemen or ladies aged 40 years and above.
Meaning: To eat
Example: "I'm hungry, wanna makan?"
Example: "Wow, this chicken rice is so shiok!"
Meaning: Sorry or Embarrassed
Example: "Paiseh, can I borrow a dollar? I don't have coins."
Meaning: Takeaway or To-go
Example: "Aunty, one chicken rice tapao."
Meaning: Can I?
Example: "I want to have two packets. One to eat here and one tapao. Boleh?"
Meaning: High class
Example: "Don’t go to an atas place tonight can? I am broke."
Meaning: Catching up and having banter with friends
Sometimes referred to as rubbish
Example: "Let’s just meet and talk cock over kopi, want?"
"That guy always tock cock one!"
Meaning: Not bad
Example: The food here is buay pai, wanna try tonight?
Example: "This mee siam is sibei spicy, I cannot take it."
Meaning: Oh my god
Example: "Wah lao he is late again!"
Meaning: Nice, great
Example: "We are going to have drinks tonight? Swee."