Useful Zulu phrases

A collection of useful phrases in Zulu. Click on the English phrases to see them in many other languages.

Key to abbreviations: frm = formal, inf = informal, sg = singular (said to one person), pl = plural (said to more than one person).

English isiZulu (Zulu)
Welcome Ngiyakwemukela (sg)
Ngiyanemukela (pl)
HelloSawubona (sg)
Sanibonani (pl)
Good morningSawubona (sg)
Sanibonani (pl)
Good afternoonSawubona (sg)
Sanibonani (pl)
Good eveningSawubona (sg)
Sanibonani (pl)
How are you? Unjani? (sg)
Ninjani? (pl)
Fine thanks, and you? Ngikhona, ngiyabonga. Wena unjani? (sg)
Sikhona, siyabonga. Nina ninjani? (pl)
Long time no see Mehlo madala! (old eyes)
What's your name?Ngubani igama lakho?
My name is ...Igama lami ngu...
Where are you from? Uphumaphi?
Uvelaphi?
I'm from ... Ngiphuma e ...
Ngivela e ...
Pleased to meet youNgiyajabula ukukwazi
Good night Lala kahle! (sg)
Lalani kahle! (pl)
Goodbye Sala kahle (sg) >people staying
Salani kahle (pl) >people staying
Hamba kahle (sg) >people leaving
Hambani kahle (pl) >people leaving
Ube no hambo uluhle
Good luck Ngikufisela iwela!
Ngikufisela impumelelo!
Cheers/Good health!Impilontle!
Akubekuhle!
Have a nice dayUbe nosuku oluhle! (sg)
Nibe nosulu ulohle! (pl)
Bon appetitThokoleza ukudla!
Bon voyageUbe nohambo oluhle!
I understandNgiyaqonda
I don't understandAngizwa
YesYebo
NoCha
MaybeMhlawumbe
I don't knowAngazi
Please speak more slowlyNgicela ukhulume kancane
Please say that againUkwazi ukukuthi futhi na?
Please write it downNgicela ukubhale
Do you speak English?Ukhuluma isiNgisi na?
Do you speak Zulu? Ukhuluma isiZulu na?
Yes, a littleYebo, ingcosana
How do you say ... in Zulu? ... ukusho kanjani ngesiZulu?
SorryNgiyaxolisa
Excuse meUxolo!
How much is this?Kubiza malini?
PleaseAke; Ngicela; Siza
Thank you Ngiyabonga
Ngiyabonga kakhulu (sg)
Siyabonga (pl)
You're welcome Uyamukelwa (sg)
Niyamukelwa (pl)
Where's the toilet? Likuphi ikamelo lokugezela?
Likuphi itholethe?
This gentleman will pay for everythingUmnumzana uzokhokha konke
This lady will pay for everythingInenekazi lizokhokha konke
Would you like to dance with me?Uthanda ukudansa nami?
I love youNgiyakuthanda
Get well soonPhila masinya
Leave me alone!Ndiyekele!
Help!Usizo!
Fire!Umlilo!
Stop!Ma!
Call the police!Biza amaphoyisa!
Merry Christmas
and Happy New Year
Ngikufisela uKhisimusi oMuhle noNyaka oMusha oNempumelelo
Happy Easter IPhasika elijabulayo
IPhasika elithokozayo
Happy BirthdayHalala ngosuku lokuzalwa
One language is never enoughUlwimi ululodwa alonelanga
My hovercraft is full of eels
Why this phrase?
Umkhumbi wami ugcwele ngenyoka zemanzini