Heading on a trip to Bulgaria? You should have a list of basic Bulgarian phrases that will help you survive in a country where the language has nothing in common with most of the world’s most spoken languages. We’ve prepared a short list of slang Bulgarian words to help you fit in easier into local society.
Choveche (Човече, cho-veh–che) / Man
If someone is a close friend of yours or the communication is very informal, you can call him choveche. It is an equivalent of the English “man” like in “What’s up, man?”.
Brat (брат, braht) / Bro
This is something you will hear almost every young person using, no matter whether it’s a girl or a boy. It looks and sounds strange to see two beautiful girls talking, addressing each other with “bro” but it’s a common sight, especially in Sofia.
Kifla (кифла, key-fla) / A superficial girl
You call kifla, a girl who cares too much about her looks and very little about anything else. It is usually used in a disapproving context.
Kupon (pronounce it like coupon) / Party
Although you can sometimes hear the word “party”, it usually stands for a more sophisticated gathering, while a kupon is the most basic, cheap-alcohol infused get-together where everyone ends up throwing up or falling asleep under the table by the end of the night.
Bomba (бомба, bom-bah) / To leave without paying your bill
The unpleasant act of ordering a lot of food and drinks at a bar and then leaving without paying is expressed with the word bomba. It may have something to do with the perplexed and furious reaction of the venue’s staff when they find out what’s happened.
Mrahtya (мръхтя, mrah-tya) / To do nothing
If you ask someone “What are you doing?”, they may answer “Mrahtya”, which will mean they do nothing and intend to continue doing it.
Klincha (клинча, kleen-chah) / To try to avoid an obligation
If you try to avoid sticking to a promise or doing what you are supposed to do by thinking of impossible excuses, the Bulgarian slang word for it will be klincha. It doesn’t necessarily mean you will be able to skip the unwanted task, however.
Maina (майна, my-nah)
Maina is a slang word that is basically untranslatable and can stand for almost anything from “You don’t say!”, “Come on!” or simply enhancing what has just been said. One specific thing about it, is that it is used only by Bulgarians from the city of Plovdiv and by using it you show that you have spent too much time in Plovdiv as a foreigner.
Aylyak (айляк, eye–lyak)
This is another untranslatable word from Plovdiv, which stands for the carefree lifestyle the inhabitants of this city famously follow. When you are aylyak, it means that you are not taking life very seriously and enjoy doing nothing or doing everything slowly, at your own pace.