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Lesson Transcript

Halo semuanya! Nama saya Fira. Hi everybody! I’m Fira.
Welcome to IndonesianPod101.com’s “Bahasa Indonesia dalam 3 menit”. The fastest, easiest, and most fun way to learn Indonesian.
In the last lesson, we learned the most common forms of greetings in Indonesian. Do you remember them?
In this lesson we’re going to learn a very useful phrase: “Do you speak English?”
If you find yourself in a situation where you need assistance in English, this phrase can be a lifesaver. And because you’re asking it in Indonesian, you can be sure that everyone will understand what you’re saying, even if their answer is no.
Here's the informal way to say it.
Kamu bisa berbahasa Inggris?
[slowly] Kamu bisa berbahasa Inggris?
Kamu bisa berbahasa Inggris literally means “You can speak english.” but depending on the way you say it, you can turn it into a question. Kamu is the informal way to say “you?” The next word is the verb, bisa, which means “be able”.
Berbahasa is a verb. This word is made up with, Bahasa, which itself is a noun meaning “language" and Ber- is a prefix. When ber- is combined with the word stem bahasa, it means “to talk or to speak”.
And you probably recognize Inggris to be “english”.
To learn more about ber- verbs, like berbahasa, please look at our Absolute Beginner series on IndonesianPod101.com. You can find very detailed grammar lessons and resources there!
We’re now going to make this sentence formal. First, we have to use the word apakah, which roughly means “tell me whether...”
Next, we need to use the formal version of “you,” which is Anda. And everything else stays the same:
Apakah anda bisa berbahasa inggris?
[slowly] Apakah anda bisa berbahasa inggris.
Adding permisi, "excuse-me", the sentence becomes even more polite:
Permisi, apakah anda bisa berbahasa inggris?
[slowly] Permisi, apakah anda bisa berbahasa inggris?
The responses you will receive could be one of these three:
Bisa. "I can."
[slowly] Bisa.
Sedikit. "A little."
[slowly] sedikit.
Maaf, saya tidak bisa. "Sorry, I can’t."
[slowly] Maaf, saya tidak bisa.
Maaf is a polite way to say you’re sorry.
Saya is Indonesian for “I”.
Since this last one is a negative statement, we need to say tidak which means “no”, before the verb, bisa. So “Sorry I can’t” is Maaf, saya tidak bisa.
Now it’s time for Fira’s Insights.
For those of you who are not only English speakers, you can obviously use this question with any language you need. Just substitute Inggris with…
Italia for Italian.
Rusia for Russian.
Spanyol for Spanish.
Jerman for German.
In this lesson we mentioned the expression maaf. In the next lesson we will learn more about this and other ways to apologize in Indonesian. It’s never too late to show your good manners with Indonesian people!
I'll see you in our next Bahasa Indonesia dalam 3 menit lesson.
Sampai jumpa!