In fact, Vietnamese people use many different types of pronouns in Vietnamese for different people. In addition, each type of pronoun has many synonyms. So it can be said that Vietnamese is an extremely diverse language. Many foreign tourists coming to Vietnam are overwhelmed by the diversity and abundance of Vietnamese.

Here are some common pronouns in Vietnamese, you can memorize them so that communicating with Vietnamese people will become easier and more natural! 


1. Chị and Anh

Chị and Anh are used to call a person slightly older than you like your older brother or sister. Chị for women and Anh for men.

But nowaday, women like to be called chị even if they are much older than you, old enough to be your mother. In a working environment, you should call them chị instead.

2. Em

Em is a pronoun to call a younger person for both men and women. But in a relationship, even if the guy is younger than the girl, he still calls her Em instead of Chị cos It sounds like the guy is bigger and he can protect her.

Also, women like to be called Em if they are not much older than you

3. Chú/Cô

Those pronouns are for people around your parents’ ages. Chú is for uncle and Cô is for Auntie. In some cases, women like to be called Chị instead, you can consider to call her Chị. Chị sounds younger than Cô.

4. Ông/Bà

Used to refer to older people around of your parents’ parents age. Ông is used for men and Bà is used for women. Besides, old people often call each other by ông/bà and call themself by tôi. However, today there are many young people like students still call each other by ông/bà. Maybe that’s one of the trends among young people.

5. Cháu

Cháu is a pronoun to call people worthy of your children’s or grandchildren’s age. When you call them cháu, you can call yourself by ông/bà or cô/chú.

For each pronoun used when calling others, you have to use the corresponding pronoun to call yourself properly.

Those are the common pronouns to refer to people around you, besides there are still many pronouns used in different relationships such as family, friends, school.

You can learn more about pronouns in each environment right here.

A useful tip for you. If you don’t know which pronoun you should use, noticing their sentences, which pronoun do they call themselves then you can call them by that pronoun.

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