Vocabulary (Review)

Learn New Words FAST with this Lesson’s Vocab Review List

Get this lesson’s key vocab, their translations and pronunciations. Sign up for your Free Lifetime Account Now and get 7 Days of Premium Access including this feature.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Notes

Unlock In-Depth Explanations & Exclusive Takeaways with Printable Lesson Notes

Unlock Lesson Notes and Transcripts for every single lesson. Sign Up for a Free Lifetime Account and Get 7 Days of Premium Access.

Or sign up using Facebook
Already a Member?

Lesson Transcript

Becky: Hi everyone. I’m Becky. Welcome back to VietnamesePod101.com This is the Absolute Beginner series, Season 1, Lesson 13 - Booking a Hotel Room in Vietnam.
Huyen: Xin chào! I’m Huyen.
Becky: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to ask for what you want in Vietnamese. The conversation takes place at a hotel and is between Mary and the receptionist.
Huyen: The speakers are strangers, so they’ll be using formal Vietnamese.
Becky: Let’s listen to the conversation.
Mary: Tôi muốn một phòng.
Receptionist: Chị muốn phòng đơn hay phòng đôi ạ?
Mary: Phòng đơn.
Receptionist: Chị muốn phòng hút thuốc hay không hút thuốc ạ?
Mary: Không hút thuốc.
Receptionist: Vâng, chị đợi một chút ạ.
Mary: I want a room.
Receptionist: Would you like a single or a double room?
Mary: A single room.
Receptionist: Would you like a smoking or a non-smoking room?
Mary: Non-smoking.
Receptionist: All right. Please wait a moment.
Becky: Huyen, is it difficult to find a hotel in Vietnam?
Huyen: No, not at all, especially in big cities such as Ha Noi or Ho Chi Minh.
Becky: What if we don’t make a reservation?
Huyen: Well, it is always recommended that you do some research and book a hotel in advance. But in some emergency cases, you can drop by a hotel and ask for a room there.
Becky: I heard that to get a room in a three-star hotel, you only have to spend around thirty US dollars. And the room and hotel services are usually quite good.
Huyen: That’s right. Also, guest houses are much cheaper.
Becky: You’re right. But they’re sometimes not safe for foreign tourists, so you need to be careful. Okay, now let’s move on to the vocab.
Becky: Let’s take a closer look at some of the words and phrases from this lesson. The first word is...
Huyen: Hút thuốc.
Becky: “To smoke”. When referring to a smoking room, the word...
Huyen: ...phòng…
Becky: ...meaning “a room”, is added before this verb to make the noun phrase…
Huyen: ...phòng hút thuốc.
Becky: Please note that usually there is no distinction between a smoking and non-smoking area in Vietnamese restaurants, except for very high class ones.
Huyen: So don’t be surprised when the waiter or waitress doesn’t ask whether or not you smoke when you go to a restaurant.
Becky: It might be uncomfortable for non smokers, but not so many people actually smoke in restaurants. Let’s continue with the next word.
Huyen: Vâng
Becky: This means “yes”. It’s used to reply to an older person or someone to whom you want to show respect or politeness, like your customers. An answer starting with this word usually ends with...
Huyen: ạ.
Becky: In lesson 9, you learned the word...
Huyen: ...ừ.
Becky: It also means “yes”, but it’s very informal and can only be used to talk with someone around your age or younger. In a different example...
Huyen: Vâng, đây là dich vụ miễn phí ạ.
Becky: “Yes, this is a free service.” is used when you talk to a customer.
Huyen: Ừ, đây là dịch vụ miễn phí.
Becky: “Yes, this is a free service.” is when you talk to a friend.
Huyen: In brief, vâng is polite and respectful, while ừ is informal.
Becky: Please be careful not to use the wrong one. Now we have the last word.
Huyen: Đợi
Becky: “To wait”. A frequently used phrase that contains this verb is...
Huyen: ...Đợi một chút or đợi tí.
Becky: “Wait a bit” or “wait a little.”
Huyen: The sentence-ending particle used with this phrase is nhé.
Becky: This makes it more intimate. Let’s hear some examples.
Huyen: Đợi tớ một chút nhé.
Becky: “Wait for me for a minute.”
Huyen: Đợi tí nhé
Becky: “Hold on a second.” Okay, now onto the grammar.
Becky: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to ask for what you want in Vietnamese.
Huyen: In the dialogue, we hear: Tôi muốn một phòng
Becky: “I want a room.” Start with the verb...
Huyen: ...muốn...
Becky: …which means “to want”, followed by the thing you want. Usually a noun classifier is added right after…
Huyen: ...muốn...
Becky: ...and before the main noun.
Huyen: The noun phòng is special, because it can stand alone, without any classifier.
Becky: But in most cases, a classifier is needed. For example...
Huyen: ...Tôi muốn một quyển vở mới.
Becky: “I want a new notebook.”
Huyen: Tôi muốn một cốc cà phê sữa.
Becky: “I want a glass of milk coffee.”
Huyen: Tôi muốn một con cún.
Becky: “I want a puppy.”
Huyen: Tôi muốn một cái áo mới.
Becky: “I want a new shirt.” Huyen, is there a special pattern in this structure that our listeners should remember?
Huyen: Yes. Normally, the noun right after muốn cannot be a person.
Becky: For example, you can’t say:
Huyen: Tôi muốn một bạn gái.
Becky: “I want a girlfriend.” Instead, you have to say...
Huyen: Tôi muốn có bạn gái.
Becky: “I want to have a girlfriend.” Or if you want to say, “I want an elder sister.”...
Huyen: You can’t say, Tôi muốn một chị gái.
Becky: Instead, say...
Huyen: Tôi muốn có chị gái, meaning “I want to have an elder sister”.
Becky: All right, that’s all for this lesson. Now you can say what you want easily, right? Don’t forget to read the lesson notes for a complete review of this lesson.


Becky: Okay, that’s it for this lesson. Thank you for listening and we’ll see you next time.
Huyen: Tạm biệt!