Ayo-ayo: What It Means in English

Updated on May 23, 2018

The Cebuano Language

Cebuano is one of the many dialects spoken by people native to or living in the Philippines. It is a language spoken by most people in the Visayas region of the Philippine archipelago. It is considered an Austronesian language, which means that it is one of the many languages dispersed throughout the different islands of the Pacific and the Southeast Asia.

Cebuano is among several languages that have been established since the ancient period. It is spoken by Filipino people living in the different Visayan regions of the Philippines including Negros Oriental, Surigao del Sur, Surigao del Norte, Bohol, western Leyte, Palawan, and Negros Occidental to name a few. Around 20 million Filipinos speak this Philippine dialect and you may be surprised at how versatile these people are. Even in the farthest regions of the country and even in the country's capital where Filipino (language) is widely used, you can still hear many people speaking Cebuano words.

The Cebuano Word Ayo-Ayo

One of the many Cebuano words that you may encounter while in the Visayas region of the Philippines is the word "ayo-ayo". This is usually spoken to people who are about to leave or are about to be left behind. Typically, this word is used to denote well wishes. If you say "ayo-ayo" to your friend before he leaves or before you leave him, this means that you care for him and want him to take care of himself.

Ayo-ayo Translation to English

The Cebuano word "ayo-ayo" literally means "take care" or "be safe" or "be good" in English. So when you hear a Cebuano say "ayo-ayo", that means the person wants the other to take care of himself or herself. It means that the person wishes the other well.

Let us say you are leaving and saying goodbye to a Cebuano friend. Your friend may say these words to you, "Ayo-ayo na lang sa imong biyahe ha." In English, this translates to "Have a safe journey."

Ayo-ayo is synonymous to the word "amping", another Cebuano word which means "take care" or "be safe".

© 2010 rohankiss

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