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Introducing Yourself in Indonesian Posted by on Oct 4, 2017 in Uncategorized

Are you new to Indonesian and not sure where to start? Whether you’re just traveling there or are planning to move there, you’ll want to start out with the basics. Thankfully, introducing yourself in Indonesian is quite easy. By the end of this post, you’ll know how to do just that!

Introducing Yourself in Indonesian

Making friends is easy in Indonesia!

Name

When introducing yourself, the first thing you’ll give is usually your name. It’s super easy asking and answering this question in Indonesian:

Siapa nama anda?
What’s your name?

Nama saya…
My name is…

Before we move on, let me point out a few things. In Indonesian, siapa means “what,” nama means “name,” and anda means “you.” Don’t try to translate directly, because you’ll get “What name you?” You’ll get used to Indonesian grammar eventually. It’s actually quite easy! You can probably guess it by now, but saya means “me/I.”

From

Next up, let’s learn how to ask and answer about where someone is from. If you’re a bule (foreigner) traveling in Indonesia, you’ll be asked this question all the time.

(Anda) dari mana?/(Anda) asli mana?
Where are you from?

Saya dari…/Saya asli…
I’m from…

As you can see here, anda is optional in this question. This is assuming you’ve already given your name. Spoken Indonesian is all about simplicity – the less words, the better. Both questions here mean “Where are you from?”, so you can use either one.

Job

Next up, let’s learn how to ask and answer about someone’s job:

Apa pekerjaan anda?/Apa kerjanya?
What’s your job?

Saya bekerja sebagai…
I work as a…

OR

Saya…
I’m…

The first question is a bit more formal. In Indonesian, pekerjaan means “job” or “profession,” while kerja is a verb meaning “to work.” Adding the suffix –nya can mean “your/his/her,” so together it means “your work.” A great thing about learning Indonesian is that you don’t have to bother with different verbs meaning “to be” like you do in English or other languages. Simply say saya plus your job title! Not sure what yours is in Indonesian? Check out this post on job titles in Indonesian.

Age

I realize that age doesn’t always come up in self-introductions, but it’s useful nonetheless so you can practice Indonesian numbers.

Berapa umur anda?/Berapa umurnya?
How old are you?

Umur saya… tahun.
I’m… years old.

In Indonesian, berapa means “how many/much” and umur means “age.” Once again, you can’t really directly translate the question, as you’d get “How many age you?” This is just the way you ask “How old are you?” in Indonesian.

Live

Finally, let’s see how you can ask/answer about where someone lives in self-introductions:

(Anda) tinggal di mana?
Where do you live?

Saya tinggal di…
I live in…

You may be wondering why this question uses di mana instead of just mana to mean “where.” In Indonesian, di is a preposition that can have many meanings. Here it means “at” or “in.” As you can see, you’ll use it when answering this question as well.

Practice

Ok, now that you’ve learned five useful questions for self-introductions in Indonesian, go ahead and practice! I’ll go first.

Nama saya Sasha. Saya dari Amerika Serikat. Saya bekerja sebagai guru bahasa Inggris. Umur saya tiga puluh dua tahun. Saya tinggal di Kolumbia.

My name is Sasha. I’m from the US. I work as an English teacher. I’m 32 years old. I live in Colombia.

 

If you need some practice with your pronunciation, follow this video and you’ll learn all of the questions taught in this post.

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About the Author:sasha

Sasha is an English teacher, writer, photographer, and videographer from the great state of Michigan. Upon graduating from Michigan State University, he moved to China and spent 5+ years living, working, studying, and traveling there. He also studied Indonesian Language & Culture in Bali for a year. He and his wife run the travel blog Grateful Gypsies, and they're currently trying the digital nomad lifestyle across Latin America.