Plan to visit Bali in the near future and wondering what language they speak in Bali? Keep reading as we will discuss this topic in detail in this blog post.
Due to its popularity as one of the most visited holiday destinations in the world, people in Bali learn to speak many foreign languages such English, French, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, and so on. Many travel agents provides professional tour guides who specialize in different foreign languages. English is the most common foreign language in Bali so if you speak this language, you won’t have any problems communicating with most people in Bali.
Bahasa Indonesia or Indonesian language
Bahasa Indonesia is the national language of Indonesia, widely spoken across the country including in Bali. Its simplicity (learn more about Indonesian’s simplicity here) and its popularity makes Indonesian the most common local language spoken in Bali. Balinese and Indonesians are appreciative if foreigners speak their language even basic sentences. Here are some basic sentences that you can try when you are in the country.
|Apa kabar?||How are you?|
|Baik-baik||I am fine|
|Selamat pagi||Good morning|
|Selamat siang||Good (early) afternoon|
|Selamat sore||Good (late) afternoon|
|Selamat malam||Good evening|
|Terima kasih/Makasih||Thank you|
|Nama saya John||My name is John|
|Saya dari Australi||I am from Australia|
|Saya tinggal di Canggu||I live in Canggu|
|Berapa harganya?||How much is the price?|
|Bisa kurang?||Can you lower the price?|
|Saya tidak punya uang||I don’t have money|
Bahasa Bali or Balinese language
Bahasa Bali is a local language widely spoken in the province of Bali. This language is mostly used by fellow Balinese to communicate to each in other in daily conversations as well as formal situations that involves Balinese traditions such as in traditional Balinese wedding, village meetings, and announcements in temple ceremonies. You will see Bahasa Bali in road sings along with their Indonesian translations. It also can be heard in the Bali’s I Gusti Ngurah Rai airport in its announcements.
There are three levels of Bahasa Bali: halus (high), madya (middle), and kepara (low). Halus Balinese is used to speak to people in higher castes or on special events such as wedding and temple ceremonies. Madya is normally for speaking to strangers, parents or teachers. Lastly Kepara is used in daily conversations with friends. Not all vocabulary has all three levels. For example, for the expression “how are you?”, “punapi gatra?” is used for both halus and madia, while “kenken kabare” is for kepara.
Want to impress Balinese people with some phrases in Bahasa Bali? Here are some important phrases that you can try when you are in Bali. These phrases are in madia or halus Balinese. In general, Balinese people are very tolerable with foreigners speaking less preferable Balinese, but as a Balinese myself, I am more impressed to hear halus/madia Balinese from foreigners.
|Bahasa Bali||English Translation|
|Punapi gatra?||How are you?|
|Becik-becik||I am fine|
|Rahajeng semeng||Good morning|
|Rahajeng siang||Good (early) afternoon|
|Rahajeng sore||Good (late) afternoon|
|Rahajeng wengi||Good evening|
|(Matur) suksma||Thank you|
|Suksma mewali||You’re welcome|
|Wastan tiang John||My name is John|
|Tiang saking Australi||I am from Australia|
|Tiang meneng ring Canggu||I live in Canggu|
|Aji kude niki?||How much is the price?|
|Dados kirang?||Can you lower the price?|
|Tiang ten medue jinah||I don’t have money|
Other local languages in Indonesia
As one of the wealthiest provinces in Indonesia, Bali has many transmigrates from other places across the country. They bring their cultures and languages with them. Some common local languages heard in Bali are hear Javanese, Sasak (from the neighboring island Lombok), Sundanese, and Maduranese.
Conclusion on what language do they speak in Bali.
Bali is linguistically diverse. Most common languages are Indonesian, the official language of Indonesia and Bahasa Bali, the local language used in the province of Bali. Due to its tourism industry, many Balinese people learn other foreign languges such as English, French, Japanese, Chinese, Korean so they can communicate and guide tourists from those countries. In addition, other local languages such as from other parts of Indonesia Javanese, Maduranese, Sundanese, and Sasak also contribute to language diversity in Bali.