More Than 30 Tagalog Slang Words for Everyday Use
When visiting a foreign country, it is necessary to learn the language in order to interact with others and survive. But there's something that adds a bit more excitement to learning a foreign language—slang words! Without them, conversations become stale and boring, and Tagalog is no different.
Whether it's outdated or hip, you'll find it here on this list. So let's dive in and learn all about more than 20 Tagalog slang words for you to start with.
If you're already fluent, then let's see if you recognize all of these. Or you can help me out in the comments section by providing an alternative meaning or explanation for any word on this list.
This one is currently making a hit, along with #2 on this list. Lodi is the perfect Filipino slang word for that person you idolize. Yes, idolize is the key word here for this slang word's meaning, as reading lodi backwards will give you idol.
Fresh from the oven along with lodi, petmalu is a Tagalog slang word that means extreme, exceptional, cool, excellent, or something extraordinary.
The Tagalog word malupit, also spelled malupet, when jumbled up will give you the slang word petmalu.
Petmalu talaga ang performance mo on stage lodi!
Your performance on stage lodi is truly exceptional!
This is a slang word that might either be easy for you to guess or might potentially make you pause, think, and scratch your head. Focus on the first syllable, and that is a good enough clue to hint at what mumshie means in Tagalog. That's right, it's a slang word for mommies.
Werpa is another newly born Tagalog slang word. The English word power spelled as pawer, when reversed, will give you werpa.
This word is used a lot! It means "crazy" or "cuckoo" and is often used to describe someone who is hallucinating while on drugs.
Have you ever talked to someone and the person just goes on and on, like nonstop? Taratitat is the perfect slang word for a talkative person.
Example: Taratitat ka talaga means "you're really talkative."
Charot is another popular entry. So popular, in fact, that if there was a list of the most used Tagalog slang words, this one would be at the top. Use this hip word when you are joking around; it means: "I'm just kidding!"
So, the next time you say something and others take you seriously, say "charot!"
Example: "As my best friend, you're the one I'll treat first this weekend. I won the lottery. Charot!"
I had a hard time finding an exact English equivalent for this word in order to offer a much better explanation. However, bulilyaso means "a failed, or unsuccessful, plan due to an unexpected turn of events."
Here's an example from a fellow author:
Dad: We thought Marie was picking you up at 2:30 pm today?
Kara: That was the plan.
Mom: What happened? Why are you still here?
Kara: Bulilyaso, mom and dad.
Kara: Marie called me earlier and said her mom asked her to accompany her to a co-worker's birthday party. Her mom was supposed to go there with another coworker, but they changed their mind today. Aunt Lily isn't comfortable going all by herself so she asked Marie to come with her.
Mom: Just help me cook dinner instead.
Kara: Barbecue chicken?
Mom: Dehins (no). I forgot to buy chicken yesterday.
John: What's for dinner? Barbecue chicken?
Kara: Bulilyaso, brother. Mom forgot to buy chicken.
Mom: You two will eat vegetables, OK? Beans, squash, and bitter gourd.
In Tagalog, kotse is the word for "car." If you reverse the syllables, you get tsekot, which is the Tagalog slang for car. It's one of those special words that we mentioned before. Memorizing vocabulary is so much easier when the original word and the slang word are inverses.
Have you ever visited a Filipino home at just the right time? That's right, I mean chibog time! This slang word means "mealtime" or "food." When the syllables are reversed, it gives you bogchi, which is also slang "food" and "mealtime."
Another spelling used is tsibog.
Chika means "What's up?" or "What's new with you?" (Anong chika?). It can also mean "gossip," depending on the context in which it is used. While chikahan means "conversation," "chit-chat," or "talk."
Example: How was the chikahan with your childhood friend?
Use this word if you ever need or want to borrow something. That's right, this particular word means "borrow." Say it the slang way: albor. Although you may have heard some say arbor, the correct one is albor.
It is also worth adding that it is not uncommon amongst Filipinos to say albor when what they really mean is to ask if they could have it or own it. The standard Filipino word for albor is hiram.
Example: Can I borrow it? (Pwedeng albor?)
This one is still used today. Jowa means "lover," "boyfriend," or "partner."
Example: My jowa is still sleeping due to our different time zones, so I'm focusing on finishing this article today.
Dekwat means to "take something away without someone's knowledge," or "to snatch."
The word is often used with suffixes indicating the tense it's being used in. It is rarely used by itself.
Dedo means exactly what you think. That's right, it means "dead," as the sound of the word implies when you drop the letter "o." Another word for "dead" is tigok.
The Tagalog word for "no" is hindi. It is sometimes spelled hinde. When you reverse the syllables and add "s," you'll get its slang form, dehins.
Example: Dehins ko gets means "I don't get it."
17. Wafu and Wafa
The word gwapo is one of the many borrowed Spanish words used in the Filipino language. Wafu and wafa are slang for gwapo (handsome) and maganda (beautiful).
If you come in last place or are the loser in a competition, you are the kuletat.
Example: Let's see which Tagalog word will be in last place, the 20th or kulelat spot. Charot! I won't make fun of the kuletat. Whatever word ends up in last place is just as important as the one in first.
Every wife abhors this word. Kulasisi is slang for "mistress," in other words, "the other woman."
You'll most likely hear kids using this slang word. Mumu is the word for "ghosts," "spirits," and "anything that goes bump in the night."
Ladies! Have you ever been asked out by a guy with smooth moves? I have the perfect slang word for that—swabe! It means "smooth."
22. Havey and Waley
Both of these are in right now and oh-so-hip! While havey is used to indicate approval, to praise good work, or to simply agree to something and say "OK," waley means the opposite. Waley is used to indicate failure or disapproval. It is also used to simply say "not," "no," or "none."
This word is perfect for a delicious dish that just made you finished two extra portions of rice. Rapsa!
Reading the word backward from the last syllable will give you the Filipino word sarap, the Tagalog word for "yummy." Say it the slang way and you'll have rapsa.
Syonga means "stupid." It is also spelled shonga or shunga. Sometimes the last syllable of the word is doubled, changing it to syonganga or shonganga. No matter what your preference is, they all mean the same thing—stupid.
Also, I might as well mention another word often used for stupidity: engot.
The Tagalog equivalent for the magic phrase "thank you" is salamat. When jumbled up, it will give the slang word matsala.
Matsala. Ang rapsa ng sopas!
Thank you. The soup is so delicious!
26. Erpat and Ermat
These two words mean "father" and "mother" or "dad" and "mom," respectively. Now if you hear ermat and erpat being used, you'll know what they mean.
Example: "Your erpat and ermat are both so cool!"
I was originally going to add this one to #4 on the list, since both are used as slang for "kidding" or "joking." But echos (or chos) can also mean something else, which is why it earned its own spot.
In addition to the meanings mentioned above, echos is also slang for "poop." Yes, you read that right. So, next time you need to do #2 say: "Naeechos ako."
Say "money" in a cool way with this Filipino slang word. Anda is your slang word for money. So the next time you hear it, you'll know what it means.
May anda ako ngayon. Kinita ko sa pagsusulat.
I have money today. I earned it from writing.
If you want to cheer someone up and tell them "you can do it," then this is the Tagalog slang word just for you.
Keri sounds like carry. That is because that's exactly what this word means, being able to carry on or handle the situation. Keri means "can do."
Mars is used as an endearment between friends to refer to each other. Be hip and try it sometimes.
Namiss kita mars!
I missed you, my friend!
Did you get wasted last night from having too much to drink? The word you're looking for is walwal. The standard word used in place of walwal or nagwalwal is naglasing.
Nagwalwal ka na naman last night?
You got wasted again last night?
Jontis is the Filipino millennial slang word for "pregnant" with the letter "b" from the standard word buntis changed to letter "j."
This is the slang word for the head of a town or city. Reading this Filipino slang word's syllables backwards will give you "meyor." Change the letter "e" to "a," and you'll have the English word mayor.
34. Krung Krung
Krung krung means crazy, nutty. Call it outdated, but I just heard this word again when I watched the premiere of a new television series of a renowned on- and off-cam couple for the year 2020. You'll hear this Filipino slang word too amongst friends, addressing that funny or nutty person in the group.
Are you familiar with all or most of the slang words?
Questions & Answers
- Helpful 1165
what does "awit" means in tagalog?
It means "song" in Tagalog. Unless millennials had given the word another meaning that I am not aware of, like one of the commenters below is saying.Helpful 678
what does "namo" mean in Filipino?
All I could think of is a short form of a Filipino swear word equivalent to the English "F" word. Instead of saying the whole swear word, some prefer shortening it to "namo" or "na mo," which still means "F you."Helpful 199
- Helpful 158
What does "awit" mean in Filipino?
It means song.Helpful 164