Couple walking in taro plantation with local Samoan farmer

Language

Talofa!

Visitors will often hear this greeting, which means “hello”, from Samoa’s friendly and welcoming local people. 

Samoa’s national language is Samoan, but English is widely spoken, especially in Apia, and generally used for business communication.

However, as a visitor it can be helpful to learn a few Samoan phrases, not only to improve communications with the local people, but as a way of being polite and respectful to the people of this ancient culture.

English

Samoan

Pronunciation

Hello Talofa Tah-lo-far
Goodbye Tofa Toh-far
Thank you Fa'afetai Fa-ah-feh-tie
Please Fa'amolemole Fa-ah-moh-le-moh-le
Yes Ioe Ee-oh-e
No Leai Le-ai
Maybe Masalo Ma-sa-loh
That's all right 'Ua lelei Oo-a-lelay
Big / small Tele / la'ititi teh-leh / lah ee-tee-tee
Quick / slow Tope / gese toh-peh / nge-seh
Early / late Vave / tuai vahveh / two-eye
Near/ far Latalata / mamao lah-tah-lah-tah / mah-maow

Counting

1 = tasi

2 = lua

3 = tolu

4 = fa

5 = lima

6 = ono

7 = fitu

8 = valu

9 = iva

10 = sefulu

20 = lua sefulu

50 = lima sefulu

100 = selau

1000 = afe

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