20 Useful Phrases to Know in Tahiti

Tahiti | © Mayumi Ishikawa / Flickr

It always helps to know a bit of the local lingo when travelling to a new destination. French Polynesia has two official languages, French and Tahitian, although each island group has its own dialect. English is widely spoken, but put a few of these Tahitian phrases up your sleeve to help you get around.


You’ll quickly learn there are a lot of vowels in each word in Tahitian, and each letter is pronounced. Here’s how to pronounce the vowels:

A – ah

E – ay

I – ee

O – oh

U – oo

Tahitian Dancers

Basic greetings

La ora na – hello

Maita’ i oe – how are you?

Maita’ i vau – I am fine

Nana – bye bye

Mauruuru – thank you

Manuia! – cheers!

E – Yes

Aita – No


Haere tatou – let’s go!

Fa’aite mai ia’u ite e’a – show me the way to…

‘Ia maita’i terera’a – have a good trip

‘Ia maita’i te ho’ira’a – come back soon!

Ua ite oe i te parar Marite? – do you speak English?

Aita i papu ia’u – I dont understand

Ehia moni te’ie? – How much does it cost?

Other expressions

‘Aita pe’ ape’a – no worries

Haere maru – take it easy

Ua here vau ia oe – I love you

E mea maita’ i roa tele – this is very good

‘Ia ha’amaita’i mai te Atua ia ‘oe – God bless you


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