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Learn Thai Vocabulary | The Word “Want”

How to say “Want” in Any Case…Want in Thai Language

Most foreign learners of the Thai Language may learn the word “ao” if you would like to say “want”, but you can not use this word every time.

Today we are going to learn more about “want” which Thai word  ‘want’ is appropriate in which case.

 Case 1. Ao

Actually the word “ao” means “to take” or “to bring” but you can use when you choose or order something.

For example

Ao kâaw-pàt kâ.                 เอาข้าวผัดค่ะ     I want fried rice, please.


Q : Ao nám mái kráp?         เอาน้ำไหมครับ  Do you want some water?

A : Ao kâ                    เอาค่ะ               Yes (I want)

     Mâi ao kâ              ไม่เอาค่ะ             No (I don’t want)

Case 2. yàak + verb

            This is the most common way to say in Thai, it means “want to____”.

For example

            Chán yàak bpai Phuket.     ฉันอยากไปภูเก็ต    I want to go to Phuket.

Not  Chán ao bpai Phuket.  × 

            Pǒm yàakrain paa-sǎa Thai   ผมอยากเรียนภาษาไทย   I want to learn the Thai language.

 Not  Pǒm ao rian paa-sǎa Thai.   ×

***Note The word “want” which does not use when you order something (case 1), Thai people say

yàak mii + something = want to have _____

For example

How do you say “I want a house”?

@“chán ao bâan” 

This sentence is possible if somebody ask you “which one do you want, house or car?” Then you choose the house.

@ “chán yàak bâan” 

This sentence is grammatically wrong because “yàak” always follow by “verb”

 Therefore, in this case, we say,

 “chán yàak mii bâan”  ฉันอยากมีบ้าน    (I want (to have) a house.)


Case 3. Dtâwng-gaan + noun / verb

            This is the formal way to say and to write in Thai, it means “would like to____” or  “want (to) ______”

For example

Kun John dtâwng-gaan póp kun 


=Mr John would like to meet you.


Pûu-jàt-gaan dtâwng-gaan èk-gà-sǎan dtawn-ní            


=The manager wants a document now.

Dtawn-ní chán hĭw mâak, yàak bpai gin kâaw, ao kâaw-pàt 3 jaan kâ!!

(Now I’m very hungry, want to go to eat, I want 3 dishes of fried rice!!)

Hope you enjoyed learning Thai…

Thai Language Hut

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