Pampanga is popularly known as the food capital of the Philippines, the center of Filipino cuisine or the home of the famous pork sisig of Lucia Cunanan. But the province is more than just good food, it’s also known for its headstrong but welcoming people and their unique language, Kapampangan.
Knowing Kapampangan isn’t only a way to socialize with the locals, but also a way to help you find your way through the province. You can also learn the language for fun or just to impress your friends.
Read on and find the most basic way to express yourself in the Kapampangan language.
Greeting in Kapampangan
Often misunderstood as rude due to their tone of voice or how they proudly present themselves, Kapampangans are actually one of Luzon’s most friendly people. Being a tourist or someone from another province won’t make you feel like an outsider, but you can expect warm nods and greetings from the locals.
Greeting them back in their own language will surely make them smile!
English: Good morning!
Kapampangan: Mayap a abac!
English: Good afternoon!
Kapampangan:Mayap a gatpanapun!
English: Good evening!
Kapampangan: Mayap a bengi!
English: How are you?
Kapampangan: Komusta ka?
Saying thanks in Kapampangan
With how friendly the Kapampangans are especially to their visitors, you’ll find yourself expressing gratitude most of the time.
To say thanks in Kapampangan, you can say:
English: Many thanks
Kapampangan: dacal a salamat
Asking for directions?
There are numerous destinations worth visiting in Pampanga and it will surely help to know how you can ask the locals for directions in their own language. Sometimes asking the locals themselves for travel advice can take you to well-hidden gems in the beautiful province.
English: Where is SM Pampanga?
Kapampangan: Nokarin ya ing SM Pampanga?
English: Where’s the best restaurant here?
Kapampangan: Nokarin manyaman ing pamangan keni?
Some basic directional terms:
English: up/going up
English: down/going down
Kapampangans love compliments, especially about their food!
After a great meal, don’t forget to praise the cook for the tasty food! You’ll definitely receive some lively thanks and a gracious smile. Although Kapampangans have already established their place in Filipino cuisine, they’d still appreciate compliments, especially from outsiders and foreigners.
English: The food is delicious!
Kapampangan: Manyaman ing pamangan!
English: The food is tasty
Kapampangan: Malasa ing lutu mu!
You may like to read: 10 Kapampangan Dishes You Have To Try!
Don’t misunderstand these words
In Tagalog, “buti” can be used to say “good” or to express delight that a certain event happened. In Kapampangan, “buti” means “how?”
If you ever experience any type of misfortune and you hear a Kapampangan say, “buti milyari ita?” He/she wasn’t saying that he was happy for your bad luck. It was simply a question that translates to “How did that happen?”
This word doesn’t mean what you think it means. It’s the Kapampangan word for “bridge” and not BIlly’s willy.
In tagalog, “pota” is a profanity, but in Kapampangan, it means “later.” So, if you invite a Kapampangan for a drink or a lunch out and you receive an unenthusiastic “pota,” you should know that he/she was simply busy.
Other common Kapampangan words you should know:
English: I love you
Kapampangan: Kaluguran da ka
English: Come here
English: Let’s eat
Kapampangan: Tara mangan
Kapampangan: Malaus kayu
English: Take care
Kapampangan: Mimingat ka
There you go! That ends the list of basic Kapampangan words and phrases you should know. This list should help you connect with the locals of Pampanga at a deeper level, find your way through the busy province and adapt to the Kapampangan culture.