6 Helpful Tips To Learn Thai Fast

I am sure everyone wants to learn Thai fast. Especially when it comes to language learning, everyone looks for the quick option, a way to speed through the learning process straight to fluency. However, this is not really possible. Saying that, there are some ways in which you can learn Thai faster.

Today, we are going to look into some ways of doing just that – speeding up the process of learning a language. This is possible to an extent, but it does that a lot of input from you as the learner. If you are ready to put in the time, then read on. 

How to Learn the Thai Language Fast

1. Vocabulary Is The Key

As important as grammar is, it serves no purpose if you have no vocabulary to use it with. You can implement Thai words as soon as you start learning them. Of course, you will likely make many mistakes with this method, but that is all part of the learning process. Practicing to communicate with someone in the language will show you how the language works in everyday speech.

Try learning the very basics of Thai grammar, such as the word order (Subject, Verb, Object). That should be enough to get you started. Over time as you get used to the language, you will begin to piece together the intricacies of the grammar. Essentially, with this tip, you will avoid being slowed down by the less exciting and less actionable grammar rules and instead have a foundation of vocabulary that you can actually use.

In addition, a great suggestion to practice Thai is with onomatopeia, as it is a fun way to learn new words!

2. Find A Native Speaker To Practice With

As you start learning Thai, you may worry that what you are learning does not reflect what is spoken in the country. After all, Thai has many different ways of communicating based on who you are talking to. 

Let’s not forget that everyday colloquial speech doesn’t always follow the same structure as the formal way that is generally taught. Thai speakers will help you to sound more natural when you talk and can help to explain some of the cultural aspects, such as politeness, much better than you can find online.

This tip aims to help you learn to be more focused. With this additional guidance, you should get a better quality of learning and a faster turnaround time. If your goal is to communicate with a local, then having a local to talk with makes sense. 

You can also learn and practice with native Thai teachers from Learn Thai Style online or face-to-face. With the help of the local teachers, you will for sure get your pronunciation, grammar, and vocabulary in Thai fast. 

3. Watch TV And Movies

You often hear stories of how people learned a language (or at least built up their knowledge) through watching and listening to media from that country. Generally, it is easy to find some Thai TV show excerpts or movie scenes online. There is also plenty of music to listen to, and a quick search on YouTube will bring up plenty of results.

While the predominant form of Thai that people learn is the Central Thai dialect, you should also be exposed to other dialects and accents. This will prepare your ears for visiting the country, as many people move around to the big cities to work. 

Media is one of the best way to do this. It is an interesting way to practice Thai, as you can listen to the character’s words and repeat them to yourself. This way, you will learn pronunciation and new vocabulary together. 

Sure, this can be done with any Thai language learning videos online, but this way, you hear it in a real scenario. Just make sure what you are watching is actually in Thai.

Tips To Learn Thai Fast dont be afraid to make mistakes

4. Don’t Be Afraid To Make Mistakes

Embarrassment can be a big barrier to practicing any new language, let alone Thai. When making the jump to using your newly learned Thai abilities with native speakers, it can be hard to deal with misunderstandings because your tone pronunciation wasn’t quite right or you used the wrong word. Many of us have had that feeling where you just wish you could just melt away.

However, mistakes are a necessary step in learning. Nobody gets everything right the first time, so learning to deal with this shyness and embarrassment is key to practicing Thai. Try to look at it from a more light-hearted perspective.

It is ok to laugh at yourself every so often. You just need to make sure you internalize and remember your mistakes so that you do not make them again in the future.

The best advice is to enjoy it as much as possible. If the person starts laughing when you mispronounce a word, you should laugh with them. Listen out to how they say it and repeat it to show you understand. If they see that you understand the mistake and are learning from it, then they should feel some respect for you.

Tips To Learn Thai Fast language learning app

5. Use A Language Learning App Like Ling

Whether we are commuting to work, traveling, or just sitting around bored at home, we can use these language learning apps like Ling to get in just that little bit of extra time learning.

Putting in 10 extra minutes a day practicing Thai vocabulary or grammar can make a difference in your ability to remember. Repeated exposure helps to move these new words and phrases into your memory.

Then there is the fact that these apps can offer different ways of learning beyond just reading or writing. They can test your speaking and listening in the language, which is not possible in books alone.

Ultimately, the convenience and diversity offered make these apps an ideal partner for those looking to learn the Thai language fast.

6. Keep In Mind 5 These Tips When You Learn Thai

Learn The Script

The Thai script may look like a bunch of squiggles to the untrained eye. But it is, in fact, the native language of over 20 million people and has a heritage going back centuries. By learning the script, you will put yourself in the best position to jumpstart mastering Thai.

The Thai alphabet consists of 44 consonants and 28 vowel combinations, and several tonal markers. Meanwhile, sentences usually do not contain spaces between words, capital or lower case letters, or even punctuation, adding to the confusion.

While it certainly appears daunting, it is well worth your time as it helps tremendously with speaking, and so should be your first step in your Thai learning journey. As not all signs are translated into English, learning to read Thai can be your ticket to discovering something new.

Mind Your Manners

Nobody wants to be that person when they travel abroad. Minding your manners when interacting with others is crucial, and this applies to the language too. As you learn Thai, you’ll find that several words, particles, and pronouns are used for politeness. Perhaps the most important of these is the ending particles of kha (ค่ะ) and khrap (ครับ), used by females and males, respectively.

Somewhat untranslatable, these words are used to make the sentence sound polite and show respect to whoever you are speaking with. It can be used after most sentences, though how often you should use it depends on who you are talking with.

If talking to someone of authority or during a short interaction with a stranger, it is better to use it more often. When talking with close friends, however, it is acceptable to use it sparingly, like when you are being sincere (e.g., saying thank you when receiving a gift). 

Be sure to use these in your everyday conversations to not cause offense or appear insensitive.

Watch Your Tone

Ever noticed how sometimes, when you overhear Thai people speaking together, it sounds like their words are bouncing up and down? That’s because they are (in a way). Thai is a tonal language, meaning that individual words can be differentiated based on how they are spoken. 

There are 5 different tones used in the Thai language, including:

  • Falling Tone
  • Rising Tone
  • Middle Tone
  • Low Tone
  • High Tone

While you may get away with ignoring the tones to an extent, you will likely, at times, be faced with a blank expression – or worse, if you are unfortunate enough to use the wrong tone on the wrong word. 

If you are really looking to impress your Thai friends or master the Thai language, it is worth putting in the time to learn the 5 different tones and doing your best to clearly differentiate them in conversation.

Control Your Breath

Tones are one of many problems you will face when it comes to learning Thai pronunciation. The Thai language uses aspirated and unaspirated consonants, meaning that words are distinguished by whether they are pronounced with or without a ‘puff of air.’

For example, an aspirated consonant can be the difference between ordering fried rice with egg or fried rice with chicken. The word for egg uses an aspirated ‘k’ sound, while chicken uses an unaspirated ‘k’ sound, sounding closer to a ‘g’. 

Several different transliterations are used for Thai, and some guidebooks may use slightly different spellings for their pronunciation guide. Some may write the transliteration for chicken as ‘kai’ while others will write ‘gai’ as a means to show the difference.

Learning to differentiate these pronunciations can take some getting used to, but in the long run, it will definitely help you converse with the locals and, in this case, order food.

Immerse Yourself

The best thing you can do to kickstart your Thai learning is to immerse yourself in the language. What is the best way to learn Thai right away? Go to Thailand!

When surrounded by the language, you can listen, practice, and soak in the language in everyday situations with native speakers. Listening to Thai music and watching Thai tv also helps absorb the language.

Try to get away from the main tourist spot to better understand the country’s culture and expose yourself to different accents and dialects. This is the optimum way to perfect your pronunciation and learn new vocabulary. Most importantly, don’t be shy. Even if you make mistakes, people will be happy that you try and may even help correct you.

It is fair to say that Thai is not the easiest language to learn. Between the range of tones and the seemingly indecipherable script, it can feel like an upwards battle, especially for English natives.

However, with time and practice, developing a good understanding of the language is possible, which will significantly improve your experience in Thailand.

How Can You Learn Thai By Yourself?

Is It Possible To Learn Thai Fast?

To an extent, it certainly is possible to learn Thai fast, but it does require a lot of input from the learner and, of course, a realistic outlook. This is not a case of days or weeks, but months and years. It is possible to learn and become fluent in Thai, and half the battle is not becoming disillusioned in the process. If you can do that and you follow these tips, then you stand a good chance of learning Thai at a respectable speed.

Start Learning the Thai Language Today

The Ling app is a great companion for language learners. Set aside a few minutes every day to test your knowledge and take some tests to strengthen your understanding. A few minutes of memorizing Thai vocabulary is a sure step to make you fluent in Thai. And what better way to do that than downloading the Ling app on your App Store or Play Store? It features puzzles, and interactive flashcards, and enhances your other language-learning skills like reading, speaking, writing, and listening. Don’t start tomorrow. Learn Thai and other 60+ languages with Ling today!

3 Responses

    1. Hi Jean, we are a language learning app. If you want to learn and practice Thai, I invite you to try out the first two beginner units of the Ling app for free!

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