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Lesson Transcript

Xin chào, tôi là Giang. Hi everybody! I’m Giang.
Welcome to VietnamesePod101.com’s “3 phút học tiếng Việt”. The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn Vietnamese.
In the last lesson, we learned how to talk about nationality. In this lesson, we’ll learn how to talk about your location.
When you want to ask someone over the phone where they are, you first say that person’s name or the pronoun for "you", then follow with the word đang and finally add ở đâu which means “where”.
For example, Bạn đang ở đâu?
That means "Where are you now?
Let's break it down.
Bạn means "you".
đang is a helping verb, often used before a main verb, to express an action is in progress. In this case it is used to specify that the speaker is asking about where you are *now*, as opposed to where you'll be or where you've been.
ở đâu means "Where", and it goes at the end of the question.
You can see that no verb is needed in this question. In English we have the verb “to be”, but here only the helping verb đang is added.
Altogether, it is Bạn đang ở đâu?
Answering this question is simple! You say Tôi đang + a preposition + the place where you are.
Tôi means “I” and
đang is that helping verb to express that you're talking about your current location.
The preposition can be ở - “at" or "in”, ở trong - “in” or ở trên - “on” depending on the place.
Then you add the place at the end.
So for example, you can say Tôi đang ở văn phòng which is "I am in the office"
[slowly] Tôi đang ở văn phòng..
Now let’s see a few other possible answers with I -
"I am at home" would be Tôi đang ở nhà.
"I am in a meeting" would be Tôi đang ở trong phòng họp.
"I am on the street" would be Tôi đang ở trên đường.
“I am at school” would be Tôi đang ở trường
There’s a shorter and more informal way to ask “Where are you?” It is-
Đang ở đâu đấy?
[slowly] Đang ở đâu đấy?
What has changed from the previous question?
First, no pronoun is needed.
Second, the particle đấy is added at the end. Đấy has no definite meaning in this case. It is often added at the end of a question to make it sound natural and intimate.
To answer this question, simply say the preposition and then the place where you are. Sometimes the preposition is optional though.
For example -
Ở nhà - means “at home”
Ở văn phòng or just văn phòng - means “at the office”
Ở trên đường or just trên đường - means “on the street”
But be careful, because this way of asking and answering can only be used when talking with your close friends or people of the same age.
Now it’s time for Giang’s insights.
You can also use the words ở đâu to ask where an item or someplace is. But in this case, you don’t add the word đang in the middle of the sentence. You just start with that item or that place, followed by ở đâu.
For example -
Ngân hàng Vietcombank ở đâu? “Where is Vietcombank?”
In this lesson, we learned how to talk about your location using the word ở đâu. Next time we’ll learn how to talk about age in Vietnamese. So do you want to know how to ask somebody’s age? I’ll be waiting for you in the next 3 phút học tiếng Việt lesson.
Tạm biệt!