Shopping is a daily activity that you need to talk with Vietnamese people. In this article, Jellyfish will give you an overview of how to say how much in Vietnamese as well as the simplest way to bargain when shopping in Vietnam that you can practice right now.
I. How to say how much in Vietnamese – Bargain in Vietnamese
1. How to ask for prices in Vietnamese – How much in Vietnamese
In fact, there are many ways to ask prices in Vietnamese when shopping, depending on the context in which the conversation occurs. However, there are 2 most common ways that native speakers use every day:
1.1. Cái này/Món này + bao nhiêu tiền + (ạ)? (How much is this?)
This is the most common way that Vietnamese people often use it when communicating with sellers. Use this question to check the cost of an item you need to purchase.
- In Vietnamese, “tiền” means “money” and “how much” is equivalent to “how much” in English.
- In spoken Vietnamese, you can shorten the sentence without changing the content such as: “bao nhiêu tiền?” into “bao nhiêu?”, “nhiêu?”, “nhiêu tiền?”.
- Besides, you can point to the item you want to buy and say: “Cái này/Cái kia bao nhiêu tiền?”. “Cái này/Cái kia” is equivalent to “This one/That one” in English.
- Vietnamese people often add an honorific “ạ” to show respect and courtesy to the shopkeeper (when the salesperson is older than you).
- Note: You can add a name/pronoun depending on the seller’s age and gender to make the conversation more intimate and more Vietnamese.
- Cô ơi, cái này bao nhiêu tiền ạ? (When the seller is female and older than you)
- Món này bao nhiêu anh ơi? (When the seller is male and older than you)
- Cái kia nhiêu em? (When the seller is younger than you).
1.2. … + bán sao + (ạ)? (How do you sell it?)
One of the most popular ways of asking for a price in Vietnamese, mostly used in spoken Vietnamese.
- When you go to the market or the grocery store, you can point to the item you want to buy and ask:“Cái này/Cái kia bán sao ạ?”
- This way of saying is exactly like the ones above in regards to its meaning, but only in terms of expression, so you can completely use one of these two ways.
- If the seller is older than you, you need to add the honorific “ạ” at the end of the sentence to show your respect for them.
- Formula: “Personal pronoun + ơi” is placed at the beginning of the sentence when you want to call the seller: “Chị ơi”, “Anh ơi”, “Em ơi”.
- Chị ơi, cái này bán sao ạ? (When the seller is female and older than you)
- Cái kia bán sao em ơi? (When the seller is younger than you)
- Quả bưởi này bán sao anh nhỉ? (When the seller is male and older than you)
2. 3 ways to bargain in Vietnamese
Bargaining is considered normal when shopping in Vietnam, especially when going to traditional markets or grocery stores. This is a way to help you buy the product you like at the most reasonable price. Let’s find out together now!
2.1. Bớt/Giảm cho + đại từ nhân xưng + đi/nha (Can you give me a discount?)
- “Bớt/Giảm” is equivalent to the word “decrease” in English.
- “Đi” is an auxiliary word used at the end of a sentence to persuade listeners and is commonly used in spoken language. The word “đi” has the same meaning as the word “please” in English.
- When speaking to an older person, you should add the honorific “ạ” at the end of the sentence to show politeness.
- Cô ơi, bớt cho cháu đi ạ.
- Giảm cho chị một chút đi em.
2.2. The price you want + được không + (ạ)?
In daily conversation, Vietnamese people frequently use this phrase to bargain the desired price with the seller.
- Don’t forget to add the honorific “ạ” at the end of the sentence if the salesperson is older than you!
- You can add “Personal pronoun + ơi” at the beginning of the sentence to help the conversation become closer. Personal pronouns in Vietnamese will depend on the age, gender as well as the position (if that person is your relative) of the seller.
- Chị: If the opposite person is female and older than you
- Anh: If the opposite person is male and older than you
- Em: If the opposite person is younger than you
- You: Cô ơi, 100 nghìn được không ạ?
- Seller: Không được đâu cháu ơi.
2.3. Price you want + nha?
This is a more intimate, approachable version of the phrase above. Do not use this one if the seller is older than you because it will lack respect and courtesy for them.
Example: You are shopping at a grocery store. The seller is the daughter of the owner.
- Sister: Của chị hết 100 nghìn đồng ạ.
- You: 80 nghìn nha em?
See more: Vietnamese pronunciation
II. 9 common phrases when shopping in Vietnam
Here are 9 common Vietnamese Phrase when going to the market or supermarket. Knowing them will make your shopping much easier:
1. Tôi muốn mua cái này (I want to buy this)
This is the sentence pattern most native speakers use when shopping at the market. When you go shopping at the supermarket you can pick up your own items on the display shelf but when you go to the market this is completely different.
- You can point to the item you want to buy and use this one so the seller can get it for you.
Example: When you go to the market and see a vegetable shop. You want to buy a bunch of cabbage, so you can say to the shopkeeper: “Tôi muốn mua bó rau cải này” (I want to buy this bunch of cabbage).
2. Tôi có thể mặc thử không? (Can I try this on?)
Vietnamese people often use this phrase when shopping for clothes. Usually, people will try on clothes at the store to see if it fits their body. All stores will have at least one room to try on clothes for customers.
- You should try on clothes before you buy because most clothing stores do not accept returns/exchanges or if they do, it will take time for both.
Example: When you are shopping for clothes:
- You: Tôi có thể mặc thử chiếc quần này không? (I can try on these pants?)
- Seller: Tất nhiên là được rồi. Phòng thử đồ ở đằng kia. (Of course. The fitting room is over there).
3. Tôi sẽ thanh toán bằng tiền mặt/ thẻ (I will pay in cash/ by card)
“Tôi sẽ thanh toán bằng tiền mặt/ thẻ” is used when you need to pay your bills. Usually, there will be two main forms of payment: in cash and by bank card.
- However, when you shop at markets or small grocery stores, they will only accept cash payments.
- When buying at supermarkets or large chain stores, you can choose one of the two methods above.
- Cashier: Hoá đơn của chị hết 500 nghìn đồng. Chị muốn thanh toán bằng gì ạ? (Your bill is 500 thousand dong. What do you want to pay with?)
- You: Tôi sẽ thanh toán bằng tiền mặt (I will pay in cash).
4. Cái này là gì vậy? (What is this?)
Perhaps when you come to Vietnam, there will be many unique items that are not available in your country. With the mindset of foreigners wanting to understand Vietnamese culture, you undoubtedly would like to learn about those items.
- But what if you don’t know the item’s exact name? Then you can ask the salesperson: “Cái này là gì vậy?”,so they can help you out.
- You should add honorific “ạ” to express your respect to them.
Example: When you see a fancy cake box in the store:
- You: Hộp này là loại bánh gì vậy? (What kind of cake is this?)
- Vendor: This is banh xu xue – a traditional Vietnamese cake.
5. Cảm ơn bạn nhiều (Thank you so much)
Thank you is the minimum standard of courtesy that all Vietnamese respect. “Cảm ơn” – a phrase that is frequently used in everyday conversation, particularly when shopping. Since the seller has been extremely helpful throughout the buying process, this one is meant to show your appreciation.
- Salesperson: Cảm ơn quý khách đã mua hàng. Hẹn gặp lại quý khách! (Thank you for your purchase. See you later!)
- You: Không có gì. Cảm ơn bạn nhiều (Nothing. Thank you so much)
See more: How to say thank you in Vietnamese
6. Tôi lấy cái này (I will get this one)
This sentence is regularly used when making a purchase decision. Maybe you’ve decided after some consideration about which one to buy.
- Alternatively, you can use the word “cái này/cái kia” (this one/that one) or state the name of the item you bought so the seller can know and get it for you.
Example: You are deciding between Brand A and Brand B. After deciding for a while, you choose Brand B. Then you can point to brand B and say: “Tôi lấy cái này”.
7. Bạn có cái nào rẻ hơn không? (Do you have anything cheaper?)
The above one you can use when the item you want to buy is too expensive compared to your budget. You can now ask the seller if they have a cheaper option that is more suitable for you.
For example: When you go to buy fruit at the market:
- Seller: Cam loại 1 này giá 100 nghìn đồng/ cân bạn ạ (This type of orange costs 100 thousand VND/kg)
- You: Bạn có loại nào rẻ hơn không? (Do you have a cheaper one?)
8. Tôi muốn lấy size nhỏ hơn/lớn hơn (I want a smaller/bigger one)
Used more often when shopping for clothes and shoes. Staff in clothing and shoes stores will usually help you to select the correct size for you.
- You: Em ơi, chị muốn lấy đôi giày này size nhỏ hơn (I want to get these shoes in a smaller size)
- Staff: Chị cần size gì ạ? (What size do you need?)
9. Sản phẩm này có được bảo hành không? (Does this product have a warranty?)
Electronic products typically have a warranty period of 6-12 months, depending on the type of product and the distribution company.
- Electronic products are susceptible to manufacturer flaws. To protect your rights, you must pay special attention to this issue when shopping.
Example: When you buy a new phone:
- You: Sản phẩm này có được bảo hành không? (Does this product have a warranty?)
- Staff: Dạ sản phẩm này sẽ được bảo hành trong 12 tháng ạ (Yes, this product will be warranted for 12 months).
See more: Vietnamese phrases to know
III. Shopping Conversations in Vietnamese
Practicing short conversations regularly will help you remember the above notes longer. Here are 3 sample conversations when shopping in Vietnamese that you can refer to and practice at home:
1. You are shopping at a traditional market:
- You: Cô ơi bó rau này bao nhiêu tiền ạ? (How much is this bundle of vegetables?)
- Seller: Bó này 20 nghìn đồng con nhé (This bundle is 20 thousand dong)
- You: Đắt quá ạ. Cô có thể bớt cho con không ạ? (It’s too expensive. Can you give me a discount?)
- Seller: Vậy cô lấy con 15 nghìn đồng. Không bớt được nữa đâu con (Then 15 thousand dong, ok? Can’t take it anymore, girl)
- Friend: Vâng con lấy bó này ạ. Con cảm ơn cô (Yes, I’ll take this one. Thank you)
2. Lily (30 years old), Tú – shopkeeper (20 years old):
- Lily: Em ơi, chuối này bán nhiêu em? (How much do you sell this banana?)
- Tú: Dạ 30 nghìn/nải chị ạ (30 thousand dong/ bunch, sister)
- Lily: Thế cam thì bán sao em? (How do you sell oranges?)
- Tú: Cam thì 50 nghìn/kg chị ơi (Orange is 50 thousand dong/kilogram, sister).
- Lily: Thế lấy chị 1 nải chuối với 2 cân cam nhé (So I will take a bunch of bananas and 2 kilograms of oranges).
- Tú: Dạ vâng ạ (Yes sister).
- Lily: Cảm ơn em (Thank you).
3. Anna (20 years old), Lam (35 years old):
- Anna: Chị ơi, em cần áo sơ mi này size lớn hơn (Sister, I need this shirt in a larger size)
- Lam: Bên chị còn size M và size L. Em cần size gì nhỉ? (I also have size M and size L. What size do you need?)
- Anna: Chị lấy giúp em size M nhé ạ (Please help me get size M)
- Lam: Đợi chị 1 chút nhé. Size M của em đây (Wait a minute. Here is size M).
- Anna: Cho em hỏi phòng thay đồ ở đâu ạ? (May I ask where the dressing room is?)
- Lam: Phòng ở phía bên trái em nhé (The room is on your left).
The article above shows how to say how much in Vietnamese and how to bargain, as well as common phrases used by Vietnamese people while shopping. However, to use it effectively, you should take courses with Vietnamese teachers. You can refer to the high quality courses at Jellyfish with the information below:
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