Useful Tagalog Question Words: #1 Complete List

Tagalog question words - A photo of a woman holding a question mark

When it comes to expressing oneself, one of the most critical lessons to master is how to say Tagalog question words in the same way that native speakers say it. Luckily, learning Tagalog is so easy to the point that you can jump-start it just by taking note of this post.

In today’s article, I will walk you through our comprehensive list of question words in Tagalog and example statements on how to use them so that you do not have to search high and low for the best resource. Because here at Ling, learning Tagalog is fun, effective, and easy!

What Are The Main Tagalog Question Words?

Whether you are learning Mandarin Chinese, Japanese, or Tagalog, the most critical lesson in any language is how one can convey a question. Just like in the English language, there are also interrogative pronouns in Tagalog language. Here are the most commonly used:

  1. Sino – “Who”
    • Used to ask about people.
    • Example: “Sino ang nagluto ng hapunan?” (Who cooked the dinner?)
  2. Ano – “What”
    • Used to ask about things, concepts, or actions.
    • Example: “Ano ang iyong paboritong pagkain?” (What is your favorite food?)
  3. Alin – “Which”
    • Used when there is a choice or selection.
    • Example: “Alin dito ang sa iyo?” (Which one here is yours?)
  4. Kanino – “Whose”
    • Used to ask about possession or ownership.
    • Example: “Kanino ang aklat na ito?” (Whose book is this?)
  5. Ilan – “How many”
    • Used to ask about quantity or number.
    • Example: “Ilan ang kapatid mo?” (How many siblings do you have?)
  6. Nasaan or Saan – “Where”
    • Used to ask about place or location.
    • Example: “Saan ka nakatira?” (Where do you live?)
  7. Bakit – “Why”
    • Used to ask for reasons or explanations.
    • Example: “Bakit ka malungkot?” (Why are you sad?)
  8. Paano – “How”
    • Used to ask about the manner or way something is done.
    • Example: “Paano mo ito ginawa?” (How did you do this?)
  9. Kailan – “When”
    • Used to ask about time.
    • Example: “Kailan ang kaarawan mo?” (When is your birthday?)

Now, let’s continue with more examples of Tagalog question words you may encounter with Filipino people. These are very handy, and it’s best to remember them as soon as you start your Tagalog learning journey.

More Useful Filipino Question Words

As I have promised, I will give you the most comprehensive list of question words in Tagalog. So, I need you to take down notes or save this page so that you can easily search which of these Tagalog questions you can use based on the situation.

Did you know that you can also learn Tagalog question words and even more with an app? You can do so with the Ling app!

Check out more common Tagalog vocabulary below for questions:

How Do You Say Question Words In Tagalog?

The proper Tagalog translation for question words is mga salitang patanong.  

Commonly Used Question Words In Tagalog For Tourists

In order to provide you with a one-stop solution for all the most native Tagalog question words, I have also compiled some of the most used Tagalog questions that are usually asked by the locals whenever they are communicating or just passing by a tourist. Who knows, you might encounter any of these. So, at least, you will have an understanding of what it means.

Now that you understand the most usual questions you may encounter in Tagalog, I think that it is important that you also know how to give proper answers. With this being said, I encourage you to read previous posts like the easiest Tagalog expressions and how to describe the flavors in Tagalog.

Also, you can get to know more about the Philippines by knowing their top tourist destinations and celebrated traditional Tagalog dishes.

Frequently Asked Questions About Tagalog Question Words

What Sentence Structure Does Tagalog Question Words Follow?

The standard sentence structures for question (interrogative) sentences in Tagalog are the following:

  1. Question word + verb + subject/direct object

    For example: Sino ang kumuha ng baso? (Who took the cup?)

    This sentence pattern is a basic question sentence for Tagalog. It also mostly follows the standard Tagalog sentence structure.

    2. Subject + ba + verb + object

      For example: Ako ba ang umalis sa bahay? (Did I leave the house?)

      This question word is more like a sarcastic way of asking in Tagalog. It can also sound like a rhetoric question in English grammar.

      3. Verb + ba + object + subject

      For example: Namatay ba ang halaman mo? (Did your plants die?)

      If you’re familiar with the English sentence structure, you’ll notice that the pattern for the English translation is different. It follows the Question word + object/subject + verb sentence structure.

      What Is The Polite Or Formal Version Of Tagalog Question Words?

      If you want to sound more polite in Tagalog, the word that you can just add is po.

      For example:

      Magkano po ang bayabas na ito?

      How much are these guavas?

      Tagalog question words - A photo of a writing woman talking to a man

      Is It Hard To Learn The Tagalog Language?

      As I have said, I firmly believe that learning Tagalog is much easier than any other language. Let me give you some reasons why:

      • The writing system is heavily influenced by the English alphabet. In fact, learning the additional ñ and ng letters in the alphabet (Tagalog has 28) is already half the battle!

      • Tagalog does not have critical spelling points, which means that you can work your way just by writing the words based on how they are pronounced. So, you do not need to search much for resources or textbooks as you can easily teach this to yourself.

      • Filipinos are very friendly, and if you travel to the country, you will see that almost everyone will be open to teaching you a few words or so! Yes, even Filipino questions!

      Choose The Easy Way To Learn Tagalog!

      As I conclude this article, I hope I was able to shed light on the most useful English translation of the Tagalog question words used for everyday conversations. If you liked this post, please share it on social media so that we can reach language enthusiasts across the world who might also be interested in Tagalog. Also, feel free to comment below and share your thoughts or clarifications with us.

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