Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Notes

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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
Becky: Hi everyone, and welcome back to VietnamesePod101.com. This is Beginner Season 1 Lesson 15 - Exchanging Currency in Vietnam. Becky here.
Huyen: Xin Chào. I'm Huyen.
Becky: In this lesson you’ll learn how to use big numbers in Vietnamese. The conversation takes place at a bank.
Huyen: It's between John and Mai, a bank clerk.
Becky: The speakers are strangers, so they’ll be using formal Vietnamese. Okay, let's listen to the conversation.

Lesson conversation

John: Tôi muốn đổi tiền.
Mai: Anh đổi tiền gì ạ?
John: Từ đô la Mỹ sang đồng Việt Nam. Tỉ giá hôm nay là bao nhiêu?
Mai: Tỉ giá hôm nay là 21.000 (hai mươi mốt ngàn) đồng 1 (một) đô la.
John: Tôi muốn đổi 100 (một trăm) đô.
Mai: Của anh 2 triệu mốt (hai triệu mốt) nhé. Mời anh ký vào đây ạ.
Becky: Listen to the conversation one time slowly.
John: Tôi muốn đổi tiền.
Mai: Anh đổi tiền gì ạ?
John: Từ đô la Mỹ sang đồng Việt Nam. Tỉ giá hôm nay là bao nhiêu?
Mai: Tỉ giá hôm nay là 21.000 (hai mươi mốt ngàn) đồng 1 (một) đô la.
John: Tôi muốn đổi 100 (một trăm) đô.
Mai: Của anh 2 triệu mốt (hai triệu mốt) nhé. Mời anh ký vào đây ạ.
Becky: Listen to the conversation with the English translation.
John: I want to exchange currency.
Mai: Which currency would you like to exchange?
John: From US Dollars to Vietnamese Dong. What is today's rate?
Mai: Today's rate is 21,000 dong per 1 dollar.
John: I would like to exchange 100 dollars.
Mai: Here you are. 2.1 million dong. Please sign here.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Becky: Huyen, I was wondering, do you use commas and dots when writing Vietnamese numbers in the same way as English?
Huyen: Actually no. It’s the opposite of English.
Becky: In English, large numbers from four digits and above, are divided in a group of three digits starting from right to left and every three digits are separated by a comma.
Huyen: Vietnamese numbers have the same digit grouping rule, but a dot is used instead of a comma to separate the 3-digit groups.
Becky: And what about decimal numbers?
Huyen: With decimal numbers, a dot is used to represent a decimal point in English, but in Vietnam, a comma is used instead.
Becky: I see. It really is the opposite of English. Okay, now onto the vocab.
VOCAB LIST
Becky: Let’s take a look at the vocabulary from this lesson. The first word is..
Huyen: đổi tiền [natural native speed]
Becky: to exchange money, currency
Huyen: đổi tiền [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: đổi tiền [natural native speed]
Becky: Next we have..
Huyen: gì [natural native speed]
Becky: what
Huyen: gì [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: gì [natural native speed]
Becky: Next we have..
Huyen: đô la Mỹ [natural native speed]
Becky: US dollar
Huyen: đô la Mỹ [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: đô la Mỹ [natural native speed]
Becky: Next we have..
Huyen: sang [natural native speed]
Becky: to go, to come
Huyen: sang [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: sang [natural native speed]
Becky: Next we have..
Huyen: tỉ giá [natural native speed]
Becky: rate
Huyen: tỉ giá [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: tỉ giá [natural native speed]
Becky: Next we have..
Huyen: bao nhiêu [natural native speed]
Becky: how many, how much
Huyen: bao nhiêu [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: bao nhiêu [natural native speed]
Becky: Next we have..
Huyen: triệu [natural native speed]
Becky: million
Huyen: triệu [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: triệu [natural native speed]
Becky: Next we have..
Huyen: mời [natural native speed]
Becky: please
Huyen: mời [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: mời [natural native speed]
Becky: And last..
Huyen: ký [natural native speed]
Becky: to sign
Huyen: ký [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Huyen: ký [natural native speed]
KEY VOCAB AND PHRASES
Becky: Let's have a closer look at some of the words and phrases from this lesson. The first word is..
Huyen: gì
Becky: which means “what.”
Huyen: If you put gì right after a noun it means “what kind of noun?”
Becky: You can use it to ask for more details about the thing to which that noun refers. The noun in this case is a general noun which indicates a group of similar things. In other words, the noun can be classified into sub-categories. Huyen, can you give us some examples?
Huyen: Sure. For example, let's take the word hoa, “flower.” hoa gì? means “what flower?”
Becky: And how would you say “what color?”
Huyen: Color is màu in Vietnamese. So “what color?” will be màu gì?
Becky: Okay, what's the next word?
Huyen: mời
Becky: which means “to invite,” or “to treat,” and when used as an adverb it means “please.” In this lesson we’ll look more closely at its meaning of “please.”
Huyen: To say “Please do something,” put mời at the beginning of a polite request.
Becky: After that, add the verb phrase indicating the action you want a person to do.
Huyen: The word mời with a pronoun is commonly used before a meal, which means the same as “bon appetit.”
Becky: Okay, now onto the lesson focus.

Lesson focus

Becky: In this lesson you will learn how to use big numbers in Vietnamese.
Huyen: In Vietnam, the currency is the đồng.
Becky: The money comes only in notes with the smallest value being 500 dong and biggest being 500,000 dong.
Huyen: That's why, basically, the currency unit in Vietnam is ngàn đồng or nghìn đồng, which means “thousand dong.” But you can simply say ngàn or nghìn, without đồng.
Becky: You may encounter counting and large numbers regarding money while you’re in Vietnam, especially when you go shopping.
Huyen: Because the currency unit in Vietnam is ngàn đồng or nghìn đồng, we’ll only learn how to count thousands here.
Becky: Huyen, how we can count from 1000 to 10 000 in Vietnamese?
Huyen: It's simple. Just add the word nghìn, which means “thousand,” right after the numbers from một to mười, “from one to ten.”
Becky: For example, “one thousand” is…
Huyen: một nghìn
Becky: and “two thousand”?
Huyen: hai nghìn
Becky: “ten thousand” will be…
Huyen: mười nghìn. Listeners, you can also say ngàn instead of nghìn. For example một ngàn, “one thousand,” or sáu ngàn, “six thousand.”
Becky: The same rule is used to count from 11,000 to 99,000.
Huyen: Right. Just add the word nghìn right after the numbers from mười một to chín mươi chín,
Becky: So from eleven to ninety-nine. Following this pattern, “one hundred thousand” will be…
Huyen: một trăm nghìn
Becky: and “nine hundred thousand” in Vietnamese is..
Huyen: chín trăm nghìn
Becky: Ok, Huyen, let's give our listeners some examples.
Huyen: Sure. Hai mươi lăm nghìn
Becky: “Twenty-five thousand dong”
Huyen: Ba mươi bảy nghìn
Becky: “Thirty-seven thousand dong.”
Huyen: Chín mươi chín nghìn
Becky: “Ninety-nine thousand dong.”
Huyen: To count from 110,000 to 999,000, please add the word nghìn right after the numbers from một trăm mười to chín trăm chín mươi chín,
Becky: “one hundred and ten thousand” to “nine hundred ninety-nine.” So, “one hundred and ten thousand” will be…
Huyen: một trăm mười nghìn
Becky: “one hundred and eleven thousand” is..
Huyen: “một trăm mười một nghìn”
Becky: “nine hundred and ninety-nine thousand” will be…
Huyen: chín trăm chín mươi chín nghìn
Becky: Listeners, because the smallest currency unit is five hundred dong, you’ll often see prices ending with five hundred dong.
Huyen: In this case, simply add năm trăm đồng after the thousands of the amount of money.
Becky: For example…
Huyen: Bốn nghìn năm trăm đồng
Becky: “Four thousand five hundred dong”

Outro

Becky: Okay, that’s all for this lesson. Thank you for listening, everyone, and we’ll see you next time! Bye!
Huyen: Cảm ơn các bạn.

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What's your tip to convert the big Vietnamese dong into US dollars?