Saying ‘I love you’ in Thai is just as meaningful as in any other language. It is a powerful phrase that can potentially change the course of a relationship. It seems, just as with greetings and ‘thank you’, these are some of the first things many people look to learn when discovering a new language. So that is what we will be looking at today, along with some other important phrases you should know related to love.
Whether you are learning to say it to your Thai partner, or just out of curiosity, we wish you the best of luck!
The way to say I love you is somewhat similar to in English. It is three words that pretty much directly translate into the same phrase, but with one difference. The difference is that it contains gendered words. That means that you will need to pick the one that fits with your gender.
The Thai word for love is ‘rak’ (รัก), while the word for you is ‘khun’ (คุณ). The way to say ‘I’ will depend on whether you are male or female:
I Love You (Male Speaker): Pom rak khun (ผมรักคุณ)
I Love You (Female Speaker): Chan rak khun (ฉันรักคุณ)
This is the most basic, simplest and somewhat formal way for saying it. There are some ways you can change things to make it more specific and meaningful too. You can add in your own names, for example, making it more personal.
While the above phrases are correct, they can come off as stern and not as loving. As a non-native speaker, they will likely understand, but you can use this phrase to show you know what you are talking about.
The phrase I would recommend you use is:
Love You: Rak ter (รักเธอ)
This translates more like ‘Love You!’, which is more informal and sounds more caring. It can be used by both male and female speakers.
Looking for some other Thai love phrases you can use to impress your significant other? Well, look no further. Here are some other things you should learn.
For example, maybe if love is a bit too strong a word, you can say something a bit more subtle.
I like you: Pom/Chan chob khun (ผม/ดิฉันชอบคุณ)
There may be times when you are apart, and you want to let them know that you miss them. You can use this phrase:
I miss you: Pom/Chan kid thueng khun (ผม/ดิฉันคิดถึงคุณ)
Generally, you can make these phrases sound more powerful if you add ‘mak’ (มาก) to the end, which means a lot. You can also add on the polite words khrap/ka at the end.
Since everyone likes compliments, you can remind your partner that they look great too.
You are beautiful: Khun suai (คุณสวย)
You are handsome: Khun lawr (คุณหล่อ)
If you are a fan of cuteness, you can also say:
You are cute: Khun narak (คุณน่ารัก)
These are a few different ways to show that you are really into the other person. You should try these out see what sort of reaction you get.
So how do you introduce the one you are with to other people? Luckily, the word for girlfriend and boyfriend are the same. That should hopefully ensure no embarrassing mistakes.
Girlfriend/Boyfriend: Fan (แฟน)
If you want to use something more endearing, you can use this word:
Darling: Tee rak (ที่รัก)
Now when it comes to saying husband or wife in Thai, there is a more formal or informal option.
Husband (Formal): Samee (สามี)
Husband (Informal): Poouh (ผัว)
Wife (Formal): Pharayah (ภรรยา)
Wife (Informal): Mia (เมีย)
So there you go, this is how you say the three important words – I love you – in Thai. You will hopefully have learnt a few other important words you can use. As a somewhat conservative country, you should probably stick to using these phrases in truly meaningful situations. However, depending on your relationship with that special someone, I am sure they will appreciate you saying it to them. You just need to make sure you use the correct phrase, otherwise they might have a reason to tease you.
Practice makes perfect, and the Ling Thai app is one of the best ways to test yourself for the real moment. Try it today and see how it helps in learning the language of Thailand.