Dutch Language Blog

These Dutch Text Abbreviations Will Have You ROTFLOL Posted by on Jul 26, 2013 in Dutch Vocabulary

joinn / Flickr Creative Commons

joinn / Flickr Creative Commons

Ours is an age of abbreviations. No matter what we’re doing, we want the short cut. And one of the first places that was reflected was in our communication with one another.

Can you imagine a time before LOL and BRB and L8TR and CU? It’s difficult isn’t it?

If you’re anything like me, you long for the days when words didn’t include digits or bear a strong resemblance to hieroglyphics.

But this post…

This post is for the people who are with the times, people who want to get with the times, and people (like myself) who should probably just get over themselves and get with the times.

While the Dutch have indeed borrowed many English abbreviations, they’ve also got loads of their own.

Whether you’re on Facebook, Twitter, or just want to get hip with the lingo, feel free to test drive the following afkortingen (abbreviations) in your own chattaal (chat language)!


How do you feel about chattaal? What other afkortingen have you spotted that we can add to the list? Let us know in the comments!

[Sources: Wikipedia, EU-GSM]

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About the Author: tiffany

Tiffany Jansen is an American magazine and copywriter in the Netherlands.


  1. Peter Simon:

    Hi, a nice collection thanks. This is mainly a list of abbr. generated with MSM use; each language has it, and we can find them logical. But, c.q., there’s an outstanding and almost limitless list of abbr. used in official situations, without which it’s very difficult to survive: DUO, UWV, ZW(-outkering), VAR(-verklaring), enz., m.a.w. sink-or-swim matters. And the difficult thing is not only to know what they abbreviate, but what they actually mean, when you need them, etz. Have you got such a list too a.u.b, or is it n.v.t.?;)

    • tiffany:

      @Peter Simon You know, Peter, I don’t think we do have anything like that on the blog. You’re right – those are so important! I’ll start working on a list ASAP for a future post. Thanks!

  2. ruth:

    Hi, Tiffany – I saw one the other day, and I nearly asked my very-religious mother-in-law what it meant, but stopped myself just before offending her: gvd.

    • tiffany:

      @ruth Oh dear! Haha! Sorry we missed that one 🙂

  3. TheDutch:

    Hate any sms language!!!!!!

    • tiffany:

      @TheDutch I never use it myself. To be honest though, I don’t know much of it anyway!

  4. kreera:

    Excellent list. Thanks!
    @Peter and tiffany: try this site http://www.dutchnews.nl/dictionary/

    • tiffany:

      @kreera Thanks! Dutch News is an excellent resource. Thanks for adding that! Another one is The Holland Handbook published by Xpat Media

  5. Goof:

    Good one about ‘gvd’, haha.

    I myself make use of ‘Hoest’ (cough). As in ‘Hoe is het/hoe gaat het er mee’, which translates as ‘How are you doing’.

    • tiffany:

      @Goof Another good one! Thanks for the addition!

  6. Goof:

    I’m also missing ‘iig’: ‘in ieder geval’ which literally translates as ‘in any case’.

    The Dutch spelling after ‘idd’ is wrong. 🙂 It should read ‘Inderdaad’.

    • tiffany:

      @Goof Great addition!

      Thanks for the correction. I went in and fixed it… sloppily, but it’s fixed 😉

  7. Fran Overbury:

    How about ff? For Even…

  8. Noam:

    My favourite is W817

  9. Nicol:

    IIG. In ieder geval

  10. lexie:

    you forgot “sws” which means “sowieso” (english: definitely)