Tswana phrasebook

Tswana is spoken in Botswana and South Africa.

source : Wikivoyage

Pronounciation Guide and Phrase List

  • Basics

    · Hello.,"Dumela".,("Dumela Rra" - pronounced "borra" - when addressing men, "Dumela Mma" - pronounced "bomma" - when addressing women)

    · Hello. ("informal"),. ("dumela ")

    · How are you?,? ("o tsogile ?")

    · Fine, thank you.,. ("ke tsogile,ke a leboga ")

    · What is your name?,? ("leina la gago ke nmang ?")

    · My name is ______ .,______ . ("ke bidiwa _____ .")

    · Nice to meet you.,. ("ke itulelela go go itse ")

    · Please.,. ("ka tsweetswee ")

    · Thank you.,. ("ke a leboga ")

    · You're welcome.,. ("o amogelesegile ")

    · Yes.,. ("ee ")

    · No.,. ("nnyaa ")

    · Excuse me. ("getting attention"),. (" ")

    · Excuse me. ("begging pardon"),. (" ")

    · I'm sorry.,. ("ke kopa maitshwarelo ")

    · Goodbye,. ("go siame ")

    · Goodbye ("informal"),. (" ")

    · I can't speak "name of language",[ . ("ga ke kgone go bua teme ")

    · Do you speak English?,? ("o bua sekgowa ?")

    · Is there someone here who speaks English?,? ("a gona le mongwe fa yo o buang sekgowa ?")

    · Help!,! ("thusa !")

    · Look out!,! ("bona koo !")

    · Good morning.,. ("phakela ")

    · Good evening.,. ("motshegare ")

    · Good night.,. ("bosigo ")

    · Good night ("to sleep"),. ("boroko ")

    · I don't understand.,. ("ga ke tlhaloganye ")

    · Where is the toilet?,? ("ntlwna ya boithomelo e kae ?")

  • Problems

    · Leave me alone.,. ("ntlogela" .")

    · Don't touch me!,! ("o seka wa ntshwara/o seka wa nkgoma !")

    · I'll call the police.,. ("ke tla leletsa mapodise .")

    · Police!,! ("mapodise !")

    · Stop! Thief!,! ! ("ema !legodu !")

    · I need your help.,. ("ke kopa thuso ya gago .")

    · It's an emergency.,. ("ke ga tshoganetso .")

    · I'm lost.,. ("ke latlhegile/ke timetse .")

    · I lost my bag.,. ("ke latlhile beke yame .")

    · I lost my wallet.,. ("ke latlhile sepache same .")

    · I'm sick.,. ("ke a lwala .")

    · I've been injured.,. ("ke gobetse .")

    · I need a doctor.,. ("ke batla ngaka .")

    · Can I use your phone?,? ("ke ka dirisa mogala wa gago ?")

  • Numbers

    · 1,("bongwe ")

    · 2,("bobedi ")

    · 3,("boraro ")

    · 4,("bone ")bone

    · 5,("botlhano ")

    · 6,("boratato ")

    · 7,("bosupa ")

    · 8,("borobabobedi ")

    · 9,("borobabongwe ")

    · 10,("lesome ")lesome

    · 11,("lesome-le-bongwe ")

    · 12,("lesome-le-bobedi ")

    · 13,('lesome-le-boraro' ")

    · 14,("lesome-le-bone")

    · 15,("lesome-le-botlhano ")

    · 16,("lesome-le-borataro ")

    · 17,("lesome-le-bosupa ")

    · 18,("lesome-le-borobabobedi ")

    · 19,("lesome-le-borobabongwe ")

    · 20,("masome-a-mabedi ")

    · 21,("masome-a-mabedi-le bongwe ")

    · 22,('masome-a-mabedi-le-bobedi' ")

    · 23,("masome-a-mabedi-le-boraro ")

    · 30,("masome-a-maroro ")

    · 40,("masome-a-mane ")

    · 50,("masome-a-matlhano ")

    · 60,("masome-a-marataro ")

    · 70,("masome-a-supa ")ma

    · 80,("masome-a-robabobedi ")

    · 90,("masome-a-robabongwe ")

    · 100,("lekgolo ")lekgolo

    · 200,("makgolo-a-mabedi ")

    · 300,("makgolo-a-mararo ")

    · 1,000,("sekete ")sekete

    · 2,000,("kete-tse-pedi ")

    · 1,000,000,("sedikadike ")

    · 1,000,000,000,(" ")

    · 1,000,000,000,000,(" ")

    · number _____ (train, bus, etc.),("dipalo ")

    · half,("sephatlo ")

    · less,("bonnye ")

    · more,("bontsi ")

  • Time

    · now,("jaanong ")

    · later,("kgantele ")

    · before,("lantlha ")

    · morning,("moso ")

    · afternoon,("motshegare ")

    · evening,("maitsebowa ")

    · night,("bosigo ")

  • Clock time

    · one o'clock AM,("nako ya bongwe maphakela ")

    · two o'clock AM,("nako ya bobedi maphakela ")

    · noon,("motshegare ")

    · one o'clock PM,("nako ya bongwe maitsebowa ")

    · two o'clock PM,("nako ya bobedi maistebowa ")

    · midnight,("bosigo-gare ")

  • Duration

    · _____ minute(s),('metsotso' ")

    · _____ hour(s),("di oura ")

    · _____ day(s),("malatsi ")

    · _____ week(s),("dibeke ")

    · _____ month(s),("dikgwedi ")

    · _____ year(s),("dingwaga ")

  • Days

    · today,("gompieno ")g

    · yesterday,("maabane ")

    · tomorrow,("kamoso ")

    · this week,("beke e tlang ")

    · last week,("beke ee fetileng ")

    · next week,("beke ee tlang ")

    · Sunday,("tshipi ")

    · Monday,("mosupologo ")

    · Tuesday,("labobedi ")

    · Wednesday,("laboraro ")

    · Thursday,("labone ")

    · Friday,(" labotlhano")

    · Saturday,("matlhatso ")

  • Months

    · January,("hirikgong ")

    · February,("tlhakole ")

    · March,("mopitlo ")

    · April,("moranang ")

    · May,("motsheganong ")

    · June,("seetebosigo ")

    · July,("phukwi ")

    · August,("phatwe ")

    · September,("lwesti ")

    · October,("phalane ")

    · November,("ngwanatsele ")

    · December,("sedimonthole ")

  • Colors

    · black,("bontsho ")

    · white,("bosweu ")

    · gray,("borokwa ")

    · red,("bohibidu ")

    · blue,("botala jwa loapi ")

    · yellow,("lephutshe ")

    · green,("botala jwa tlhaga ")

    · orange,(" ")

    · purple,(" ")

    · brown,("bosetlha ")

  • Bus and train

    · How much is a ticket to _____?,("thekete ke bokae? ")

    · One ticket to _____, please.,("thekete e le nngwe ke________tsweetswee ")

    · Where does this train/bus go?,("terena kgotsa base e e ya kae? ")

    · Where is the train/bus to _____?,("terena kgotsa base e ya ko_______? ")

    · Does this train/bus stop in _____?,("a base kgotsa terenae e ema ko_______? ")

    · When does the train/bus for _____ leave?,(" ")

    · When will this train/bus arrive in _____?,("terenakgotsa base e e tla goroga leng ko______?")

  • Directions

    · How do I get to _____ ?,("ke ke goroga jang ko______? ")

    · ...the train station?,("...maemelo a terena? ")

    · ...the bus station?,("...maemelo a dibase? ")

    · ...the airport?,("...maemelo a difofane? ")

    · ...downtown?,("ko toropong? ")

    · ...the youth hostel?,(" ")

    · ...the _____ hotel?,(" ")

    · ...the American/Canadian/Australian/British consulate?,(" ")

    · Where are there a lot of...,("ke ko kae ko go nang le_______se sentsi? ")

    · ...hotels?,(" ")

    · ...restaurants?,(" ")

    · ...bars?,("dibara? ")

    · ...sites to see?,(" ")

    · Can you show me on the map?,("a o ka mpontsha mommepeng? ")

    · street,("mokgwatha ")

    · Turn left.,("hapogela ko molemeng ")

    · Turn right.,("hapogela ko mojeng ")

    · left,("molema ")

    · right,("moja ")

    · straight ahead,("tsamaela ko pele ")

    · towards the _____,("go lebagana le______ ")

    · past the _____,("feta fa... ")

    · before the _____,("pele ga________ ")

    · Watch for the _____.,("o lebelele_______ ")

    · intersection,("makopano ")

    · north,("botlhaba ")

    · south,("bophirima ")

    · east,("bokone ")

    · west,("borwa ")

    · uphill,("godimo ga thaba ")

    · downhill,("ko tlase ga thaba ")

  • Taxi

    · Taxi!,(" ")

    · Take me to _____, please.,("nkisa ko...ka tsweetswee ")

    · How much does it cost to get to _____?,("ke bokae go ya ko...? ")

    · Take me there, please.,("nkisa teng,ka tsweetswee ")

  • Lodging

    · Do you have any rooms available?,("a le na le ntlana ya borobalo ee senang ope? ")

    · How much is a room for one person/two people?,("ke bokae ntlwana ya borobalo motho a le mongwe kgotsa ba babedi? ")

    · Does the room come with...,("a ntlwana e tla ka_______? ")

    · ...bedsheets?,(" ")

    · ...a bathroom?,("ntlawana ya go tlhapela? ")

    · ...a telephone?,("mogala? ")

    · ...a TV?,("setshwantsho sa motshikinyego?")

    · May I see the room first?,("a nkabona ntlwana ya borobalo pele? ")

    · Do you have anything quieter?,(" ")

    · ...bigger?,("setona? ")

    · ...cleaner?,("bophepa? ")

    · ...cheaper?,("tlhwatlhwa tlase? ")

    · OK, I'll take it.,("go siame,ke tla e tsaya ")

    · I will stay for _____ night(s).,("ke nna bosigo(ma)a le______")

    · Can you suggest another hotel?,(" ")

    · Do you have a safe?,(" ")

    · ...lockers?,(" ")

    · Is breakfast/supper included?,("a dijo tsa phakela kgotsa bosigo mo teng? ")

    · What time is breakfast/supper?,("dijo tsa phakela kgotsa bosigo ke nako mang? ")

    · Please clean my room.,("ka tsweetswee phepafatsa ntlwana yame ya borobalo ")

    · Can you wake me at _____?,("a o ka ntsosa ka______? ")

    · I want to check out.,(" ")

  • Money

    · Do you accept American/Australian/Canadian dollars?,(" ")

    · Do you accept British pounds?,(" ")

    · Do you accept Euros?,(" ")

    · Do you accept credit cards?,(" ")

    · Can you change money for me?,(" ")

    · Where can I get money changed?,(" ")

    · Can you change a traveler's check for me?,(" ")

    · Where can I get a traveler's check changed?,(" ")

    · What is the exchange rate?,(" ")

    · Where is an automatic teller machine (ATM)?,(" ")

  • Eating

    · A table for one person/two people, please.,("ke kopa tafole ya motho ale mongwe kgotsa ba le babedi,ka tsweetswee ")

    · Can I look at the menu, please?,(" ")

    · Can I look in the kitchen?,("a nka bona mo ntlwaneng ya boapeelo? ")

    · Is there a house specialty?,("a gona le tsa ntlo tse di kgethegileng? ")

    · Is there a local specialty?,("a gona le tsa setso/setswana tse di kgethegileng? ")

    · I'm a vegetarian.,("ke ja merogo fela ")

    · I don't eat pork.,("ga ke je nama ya kolobe ")

    · I don't eat beef.,("ga ke je nama ya kgomo ")

    · I only eat kosher food.,(" ")

    · Can you make it "lite", please? ("less oil/butter/lard"),(" ")

    · fixed-price meal,(" ")

    · a la carte,(" ")

    · breakfast,("dijo tsa moso/phakela ")

    · lunch,("dijo tsa motshegare ")

    · tea ("meal"),("tee/mogodungwana (dijo) ")

    · supper,("dijo tsa selalelo/maitseboa ")

    · I want _____.,("ke batla go ________ ")

    · I want a dish containing _____.,("ke batla tse di nang le_______ ")

    · chicken,("nama ya koko ")

    · beef,("nama ya kgomo ")

    · fish,("tlhapi ")

    · ham,(" ")

    · sausage,(" ")

    · cheese,("botoro ")

    · eggs,("mae ")

    · salad,(" ")

    · (fresh) vegetables,("merogo e e phepa ")

    · (fresh) fruit,("maungo a a phepa ")

    · bread,("borotho/senkgwe ")

    · toast,(" ")

    · noodles,(" ")

    · rice,(" ")

    · beans,("dinawa ")

    · May I have a glass of _____?,("ke kopa galase ya_______? ")

    · May I have a cup of _____?,("ke kopa kopi ya________? ")

    · May I have a bottle of _____?,("ke kopa botlele ya_______? ")

    · coffee,("kofi ")

    · tea ("drink"),("tee/mogodungwana (nwa) ")

    · juice,(" ")

    · (bubbly) water,(" ")

    · (still) water,(" ")

    · beer,("biri ")

    · red/white wine,("mofine o mohibidu/o mosweu ")

    · May I have some _____?,("ke kopa_____? ")

    · salt,("letswai ")

    · black pepper,(" ")

    · butter,("botoro ")

    · Excuse me, waiter? ("getting attention of server"),(" ")

    · I'm finished.,("ke feditse ")

    · It was delicious.,("go ne go le monate ")

    · Please clear the plates.,("ka tsweetswee tsaya dijana ")

    · The check, please.,(" ")

  • Bars

    · Do you serve alcohol?,("o rekisa bojalwa? ")

    · Is there table service?,(" ")

    · A beer/two beers, please.,(" ")

    · A glass of red/white wine, please.,(" ")

    · A pint, please.,(" ")

    · A bottle, please.,(" ")

    · _____ ("hard liquor") and _____ ("mixer"), please.,(" ")

    · whiskey,(" ")

    · vodka,(" ")

    · rum,(" ")

    · water,("metsi ")

    · club soda,(" ")

    · tonic water,(" ")

    · orange juice,(" ")

    · Coke ("soda"),(" ")

    · Do you have any bar snacks?,(" ")

    · One more, please.,("e nngwe,ka tsweetswee ")

    · Another round, please.,(" ")

    · When is closing time?,("go tswalwa nako mang? ")

    · Cheers!,(" ")

  • Shopping

    · Do you have this in my size?,(" ")

    · How much is this?,("ke bokae se? ")

    · That's too expensive.,("se a tura thata ")

    · Would you take _____?,("ao ka tsaya_______? ")

    · expensive,("tura ")

    · cheap,("ga se turu ")

    · I can't afford it.,(" ")

    · I don't want it.,("ga ke e batle ")

    · You're cheating me.,("o a ntsietsa ")

    · I'm not interested.,(.ga kena kgatlhego.)

    · OK, I'll take it.,("go siame,ke tla e tsaya ")

    · Can I have a bag?,("ke kopa beke? ")

    · Do you ship (overseas)?,(" ")

    · I need...,("ke batla_______ ")

    · ...toothpaste.,("borache jwa meno ")

    · ...a toothbrush.,(" ")

    · ...tampons.,. (" ")

    · ...soap.,("molora oo tlhapang ")

    · ...shampoo.,(" ")

    · ...pain reliever. ("e.g., aspirin or ibuprofen"),(" ")

    · ...cold medicine.,("molemo oo tsidid ")

    · ...stomach medicine.,... ("molemo wa mala ")

    · ...a razor.,("legare ")

    · ...an umbrella.,("sekhukhu ")

    · ...sunblock lotion.,("setlolo sa go ithireletsa letsatsi ")

    · ...a postcard.,(" ")

    · ...postage stamps.,("stempe sa poso ")

    · ...batteries.,(" ")

    · ...writing paper.,("pampiri ya go kwalela ")

    · ...a pen.,("pena ")

    · ...English-language books.,("buka ya sekgoa/se esemane ")

    · ...English-language magazines.,(" ")

    · ...an English-language newspaper.,("pampiri ya dikgang ya sekgoa ")

    · ...an English-English dictionary.,(" ")

  • Driving

    · I want to rent a car.,("ke batla go adimisa koloi ")

    · Can I get insurance?,(" ")

    · stop ("on a street sign"),("ema ")

    · one way,("tsela ele nngwe ")

    · yield,(" ")

    · no parking,(" ")

    · speed limit,("selekanyetso sa lobelo ")

    · gas ("petrol") station,(" ")

    · petrol,(" ")

    · diesel,(" ")

  • Authority

    · I haven't done anything wrong.,("ga ke a dira sepe se se molato ")

    · It was a misunderstanding.,("e ne e le tlhoka kutlwisisanyo ")

    · Where are you taking me?,("o nkisa kae? ")

    · Am I under arrest?,("a ke tsena mo kgolegelong? ")

    · I am an American/Australian/British/Canadian citizen.,("ke moagedi wa ko america/australia/britis/canadian ")

    · I want to talk to the American/Australian/British/Canadian embassy/consulate.,(" ")

    · I want to talk to a lawyer.,("ke batla go bua le mmueledi ")

    · Can I just pay a fine now?,("a ke ka duela madi a molato jaanong?")