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Useful phrases in Lingala

A collection of useful phrases in Lingala, a Bantu lanuage spoken mainly in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and in the Republic of Congo.

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See these phrases in any combination of two languages in the Phrase Finder. If you can provide recordings, corrections or additional translations, please contact me.

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

Phrase Lingala
Welcome Boyei bolamu
Hello (General greeting) Mbote
Mbote na yo (sg)
Mbote na bino (pl)
Sango nini
Hello (on phone) Halo
How are you? Ndenge nini?
Ozali malamu? (Are you well?)
Nsango nini?
Sango nini? (What's new?)
Reply to 'How are you?' Malamu
Nazali malamu (I'm well)
Sango te (Nothing's new)
Nsango te
Na yo? (And you?)
Long time no see Kala to monana
What's your name? Kombo na yo?
My name is ... Kombo na ngaï ...
Where are you from? Owuta Wapi?
I'm from ... Na wuti na ...
Pleased to meet you Nasepeli
Nasepeli koyeba yo
Good morning
(Morning greeting)
Mbote
Good afternoon
(Afternoon greeting)
Mbote
Good evening
(Evening greeting)
Mbote
Good night Butu elamu
Lala elamu (Sleep well)
Goodbye
(Parting phrases)
Tokomonana (frm)
Kende malamu (go well)
Tikala malamu (stay well)
Good luck! Libaku malamu
Have a nice day Mokolo malamu
Bon appetit /
Have a nice meal
Kolia mboté
Kolia malamu
Bon voyage /
Have a good journey
Nzela elamu
Yes Ee
No Te
Maybe Mbala mosúsu
I don't know Na yebi té
I understand Na yoki
I don't understand Na zali kososola té
Nazo yóka elóko mókó té
Please speak more slowly Okoki koloba malembe?
Please say that again Loba lisusu
Please write it down Koma eloko wana s'il te plaît
Do you speak English? Olobaka Lingelésa?
Do you speak Lingala? Olobaka lingala?
Yes, a little
(reply to 'Do you speak ...?')
Ee, nayebi lingala moke
Speak to me in Lingala Lobela ngaï na lingala
How do you say ... in Lingala? Balobaka boni na lingala ...?
Excuse me Limbisa ngaï
Bolimbisi
How much is this? Ezali talo boni?
Sorry Nandimi te
Bolimbisi
Limbisa ngaï
Please Soki okosepela (frm - rare)
S'il vous plait
S'il te plait
Thank you Merci
Botondi
Natondi
Natondi yo
Ebote mingi
Reply to thank you Likambo te
Where's the toilet / bathroom? Wapi cabinet?
Cabinet ezali wapi?
This gentleman will pay for everything Ndéko mobali oyo ako futa nyosso
This lady will pay for everything Ndéko mwassi oyo ako futa nyosso
Would you like to dance with me? Olingi ko bina na ngaï?
Do you come here often? O yakaka awa mingi?
I love you Nalingi bino
Get well soon Bika noki!
Go away! Nkendé kuna!
Leave me alone! Tika ngaï ngaï-moko!
Help! Salissa Ngaï!
Fire! Moto!
Stop! Tika!
Call the police! Bénga ba mbila!
Christmas greetings Mbótama elámu
New Year greetings Mbula elamu
Bonane
Birthday greetings Mbotama elamu
One language is never enough Lolemu moko ezali nyosso te

Recordings and some Lingala phrases provided by LaPolyglotte

Hear some Lingala phrases


If you need to type in many different languages, the Q International Keyboard can help. It enables you to type almost any language that uses the Latin, Cyrillic or Greek alphabets, and is free.

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