Top 10 Useful Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation

Last updated on November 16th, 2022 at 09:56 am

In Hong Kong, you can experience clean, efficient, fast, and on-time transportation (交通 gaau1 tung1). To enjoy traveling, learn some Cantonese vocabulary about transportation. This will really come in handy because the exit signs can be somewhat confusing if you are not a local Hong Konger or Chinese. Of course, do not forget to learn the correct pronunciation to be understood.

Hong Kong’s public transportation can satisfy travelers’ needs. Land transportation in Hong Kong has comprised chiefly taxis, minibusses, Mass Transit Railway, buses, tramways. If travelers want to travel on seas, you can use ferries to learn how the Cantonese term and pronunciation for these transportations, then read it more below.

Learn The Cantonese Word For Every Cantonese Vehicle

Do you want to know an interesting thing about Hong Kong? They have Octopus Cards, 八達通 (baat3 daat6 tung1), a prepaid electron card used as payment on public transport. You can also use it to buy in 7-eleven. But, to give you are more efficient and convenient ride, learn Cantonese vocabulary about transportation. Check it out below:

1. Subway (地鐵) And Train (火車)

Pinyin: dei6 tit3 and fo2 ce1

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Subway (地鐵) and Train (火車)
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Subway (地鐵) and Train (火車)

Almost every district in Hong Kong can be a tourist destination. If you are one of the people who like to travel much, you will enjoy going to different places in Hong Kong in a faster way. The Mass Transit Railway (MTR) is Hong Kong’s subway system. It is the most common and convenient public transport that travelers use. Like what is said above, exit signs in train stations 火車站 (fo2 ce1 zaam6) may be confusing to read, so it would help learn some Cantonese vocabulary about transportation. You can start with “車站喺邊?(ce1 zaam6 hai2 bin1?)” which means “Where is the train station?”

2. Taxi (的士)

Pinyin: dik1 si2

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Taxi 的士
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Taxi 的士

If you are new in the city, one of the basic and common means of transport you’ll ever think of is the taxi. You can wait in any taxi stand 的士站 (dik1 si2 zaam6). It is convenient because you can see it almost everywhere and it can be used for easy point-to-point travel. There are three types of taxis in Hong Kong: red taxis operate in urban areas, while green taxis are for the New Territories and blue taxis operate only on Lantau Island.

If you are worried about the drivers not speaking English, worry no more because most of the drivers know how to speak English. But, of course, it would not hurt to learn some basic Cantonese vocabulary about transportation.

3. Bus (巴士) And Minubusses (小巴 )

Pinyin: baa1 si2 and siu2 baa1

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Bus (巴士) and Minubusses (小巴 )
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Bus (巴士) and Minubusses (小巴 )

Other popular means of transport in Hong Kong are the bus and minibus. The wide range of routes that buses cover can surely bring you to many destinations except to the outlying cities. Most of the buses are airconditioned so that they will be comfortable for travelers. Buses are available until midnight, so it is beneficial if you love the nightlife in Hong Kong. Just make sure that you know where the bus stop 巴士站 (baa1 si2 zaam6) is, or you can ask “巴士站喺邊?(baa1 si2 zaam6 hai2 bin1?)” which means, “Where is the bus stop?”

On the other hand, minibusses are faster than the regular buses, but they cost a bit higher. These are 16-seat public vans. If you are not familiar with Hong Kong, it is advisable to use the regular bus instead.

4. Tram (電車)

Pinyin: din6 ce1

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Tram (電車)
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Tram (電車)

Trams are one of the oldest means of transport in Hong Kong. It is very comfortable if you want to travel short distances or just want to explore the city. Trams show their routes on the plate with their last destination 目的地 (muk6 dik1 dei6). However, please take note that trams are only available on the northern side of Hong Kong Island.

5. Ferry (輪船)

Pinyin: leon4 syun4

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Ferry (輪船)
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Ferry (輪船)

Have you seen the beauty of Victoria Harbour and Hong Kong skyscrapers? If you have not, you can have an excellent panoramic view of these when you ride a ferry. Star Ferry 天星小輪 (tin1 sing1 siu2 leon4) is a good and cheap mode of transport, especially when you travel to Hong Kong Island and the Kowloon Peninsula. Just be conscious of the time and make sure to arrive at the Star Ferry port 天星碼頭 (tin1 sing1 maa5 tau4) earlier than your boarding time.

6. Airplane / Plane (飛機)

Pinyin: fei1 gei1

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Airplane / Plane (飛機)
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Airplane / Plane (飛機)

If you are a foreigner, you would have probably known the Hong Kong International Airport. The airplane is another means of transport in Hong Kong. Upon saying “Touchdown, Hong Kong,” you must also learn some Cantonese vocabulary about transportation. You can start with ” 呢度有冇巴士由機場去市區?(ni1 dou6 jau5 mou5 baa1 si2 jau4 gei1 coeng4 heoi3 si5 keoi1?)” which means  “Is there a bus from the airport to the city?”

7. Car (汽車)

Pinyin: hei3 ce1

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Car (汽車)
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Car (汽車)

Many parts of the New Territories are not accessible by public transportations unless you want to switch from buses to trains and other modes of transport. This is the reason why some people prefer to avail car rental 租車(zou1 ce1). Unfortunately, there are no rental car counters in Hong Kong International Airport, but you can find those counters in Central Station 中環站 (zung1 waan4 zaam6) and Kowloon Tong Station 九龍塘站 (gau2 lung4 tong4 zaam). When you rent a car, it is essential to have some Cantonese vocabulary about transportation with you that you can use in different situations like asking for gas station 油站 (jau4 zaam6),

8. Motorcycle (電單車)

Pinyin: din6 daan1 ce1

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Motorcycle (電單車)
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Motorcycle (電單車)

Because of its size and price, many people are considering buying motorcycles instead of cars. There are lots of reputable stores where you can buy motorcycles in Hong Kong. Just make sure to be a responsible rider and always bring your license (執照 zap1 ziu3) and wear your helmet (頭盔 tau4 kwai1) whenever you ride one.

9. Truck (貨車)

Pinyin: fo3 ce1

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Truck (貨車)
Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Truck (貨車)

Large trucks are usually for business purposes like food truck 美食車 (mei5 sik6 ce1) and delivery truck 送貨車 (sung3 fo3 ce1). Trucks are a really big help for business people to transport goods and products around different places in Hong Kong.

10. Bicycle (單車)

Pinyin: daan1 ce1

Cantonese Vocabulary About Transportation | Bicycle (單車)

Lastly, we should not miss the bicycle. Bicycles have lots of advantages. It can save money from transportation, helps you get exercise, and most of all, it is environment-friendly. Just a reminder, Hong Kong streets 街 (gaai1) are busy and usually steep but, Hong Kong has bike routes to be used by cyclists.


Other Cantonese Vocabulary For Transportation

Here is a list of words and phrases that you can add to your Cantonese vocabulary about transportation:

Cantonese Pinyin English Translation
單軌鐵路 daan1 gwai2 tit3 lou6 monorail
綿羊仔 min4 joeng2 zai2 scooter / moped
syun boat
直升機 zik6 sing1 gei1 helicopter
VAN仔 wen1 zai2 van
滑板 waat6 baan2 skateboard
潛水艇 cim4 seoi2 teng5 submarine
遊艇 jau4 teng5 yacht
電車 din6 ce1 streetcar
運動型多用途車 wan6 dung6 jing4 do1 jung6 tou4 ce1 SUV
太空船 taai3 hung1 syun4 space shuttle
滾軸溜冰鞋 gwan2 zuk6 lau4 bing1 haai4 inline skates
步行 bou6 hang4 walking
黑色電單車 hak1 sik1 din6 daan1 ce1 black motorcycle
黃色綿羊仔 wong4 sik1 min4 joeng2 zai2 yellow scooter
黑白色的船 hak1 baak6 sik1 dik1 syun4 black and white boat
機票 gei1 piu3 plane ticket
下一站 haa6 jat1 zaam6 next station
我乘地鐵去辦公室。 ngo5 sing4 dei6 tit3 heoi3 baan6 gung1 sat1. I take the subway to the office.
乘火車 sing4 fo2 ce1 Ride a train.
我們會乘巴士去機場。 ngo5 mun4 wui5 sing4 baa1 si2 heoi3 gei1 coeng4. We’ll go to the airport by bus.
飛機在天空上飛翔。 fei1 gei1 zoi6 tin1 hung1 soeng6 fei1 coeng4. The airplane is flying in the sky.
乘的士 sing4 dik1 si2 Take a taxi.
我經常駕綿羊仔到車站 ngo5 ging1 soeng4 gaa3 min4 joeng2 zai2 dou3 ce1 zaam6. I always go to the station by moped.
狗正在上車。 gau2 zing3 zoi6 soeng5 ce1. The dog is getting in the car.

Practice Makes Perfect!


Have A Ride In A Journey Called Learning Cantonese!

It has been a long ride since the beginning of this blog. I am pretty sure you have lots of new words that you have learned. So, don’t waste the free ride to learn Cantonese and other languages more through Ling App! If you are tired of flipping the dictionary pages to find the meaning of a certain Cantonese word, Ling App is here to help you have an interactive language learning experience. You can continue to read blog posts like “How to Say Hello in Cantonese” and “Cantonese Travel Phrases Travelers Should Learn.” You can also download the App or go to the website.

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