Singlish is Singapore's version of English. Though it takes after British English, Singapoareans sounds very different from Britons. You might even think that Singlish sounds not English at all if you hear it for the first time. It actually takes sometime to understand the accent.

Just after Christmas, my husband and I hopped into a tax and asked the driver to take us to the newly renovated Kallang Leisure Park mall.

So I said "Uncle, please take us to Kallang Leisure Park mall."

He asked "Where?" (It actually sound 'weh' with no r at all)

I said again "Kallang Leisure Park mall."


Then it dawned on me that I forgot to speak in Singlish, so I corrected myself and replied "Kah-laang Lee-shoo Pak mall."

Then he finally got it.

But then he said next "Y goh to Kah-laang Lee-shoo Pak mall? Noh people deh! Goh to veevoh [pause] citeee." (He means Vivo City)

We said "We already been to veevoh [pause] citeee. We want to go to Kah-laang Lee-shoo Pak mall"

"Y not goh to veeloh [pause] citeee. Wannah goh deh now? Ah tek you deh now?" And he started taking a U turn.

My husband and I panicked and answered uncle "No, no, we don't want to go to Vivo City. We already know Vivo City!"

"You mean you been deh also? Dah one at Novena?"

So my husband and I look each other and said "Ahhhhhhhhhhhhh Velocity!"

However, no matter how bizarre Singlish may sound, I do understand that Singlish is a mixture of British English with Chinese (usually Hokkien) and Malay words. It's like Philippine's Taglish (Tagalog + English). So since I am the visitor here, it's just fitting that I try to speak Singlish. Anyway, even in the USA, the world's largest English-speaking country, New Yorkers sounds different from Texans, and Americans sounds different from Britons. So are the Australians and Kiwis.

This is how Singlish sounds:

For more Singlish, click here.


  1. Sorry, but I never get the hang of Singlish no matter what. Hehe. I'm trying, but most of the time it frustrates me. I dunno, but I sometimes understand British English much better than Singlish.

    I try to let them speak slowly so I could know each word they are saying.

    I try to speak in a neutral accent (neutral as in, try not to add any form of accent, British or American or any other twangs and slangs heard in the movies and TV shows). I try to speak slower and louder so they could understand me better.

  2. hahahahaha!!! so funny lah! velocity naman pala eh ;)). no can understand.

  3. hahaha i had the same experience when i went to kallang leisure park last month ... but the uncle's version is different ... when i said kallang leisure park, he said there's no such place ... when i showed him the newspaper cut-out that i had, he said, "Oh, you mean Kallang Ley-sure park ... " then he followed with "tsk, tsk, you don't speak english well, ah!" ... YEAH, RIGHT!!!

  4. same here! whenever i tell the driver that im going to Bedok, they wont understand, i have to pronounce it as "Bo-dok" for them to get it! walaue! hindi rin daw ako marunong mgpronounce properly! haio!

  5. i went to lucky plaza the other day and i am singaporean its harder to understand ur strong filipino accent... atleast we pronounce our f n p properly...

  6. At least even if you mispronounce letters P and F, you'd still get the meaning of thought of what the message is, unless you are so dumb not to get it.

    But not ALL of us Filipinos mispronounce F's and P's. We have far better neutral english than you think. No matter which way you look at it, singlish sounds horrible than Filipino english.

  7. Since there are so many pinoys around, we must make an effort to learn and understand what they are saying.

    Q: What's the difference between select and choose ??
    A: Select is when you pick out something...choose is what Filipinos wear on their feet !!!

    Q: What is a Filipino's idea of devastation?
    A: It's where you catch de bus.

    Q: How does a Filipino use "devastation" in a sentence?
    A: Excuse me, don't you have to go buy your ticket at "DEVASTATION"? (if you still don't get this one, go to Lucky plaza next weekend)

    Q: How much do you smoke?
    A: Two facks a day.

    Pinoy kindergarten teacher teaching kids how to wear shoes: You put your right feet in, you put your right feet out, you put your right feet in....

    Suddenly one of the children said, "Teacher you have to say 'foot.'"

    So the teacher said, "Ok. You 'foot' your right feet in, you 'foot' your right feet out....."

  8. Singlish - "you poo you ra foo in, you poo you ra poo out!" hahah! which is much worst?