Easy Ways To Tell Date And Time In Cantonese And 45 Other Terms

Original blog post: https://ling-app.com/yue/date-and-time-in-cantonese/

Date and time are part of our daily life. When you’re happy, you will wish the date 日期 (jat6 kei4) and time 時間 (si4 gaan3) to stop. In Hong Kong, knowing the date and time in Cantonese will be helpful in different situations. It can be used to book flights, restaurant reservations and observe shops, malls, and museum hours.

Telling date and time in the Cantonese language is similar to how it’s done in the English Language. So, all you have to do is learn Cantonese vocabulary about date and time. However, it would be best if you also considered learning the right pronunciation of each word and Chinese character. With the pronunciation, I’m pretty sure Ling App can make it happen.

Traditional Chinese Calendar Vs Modern Calendar

In Hong Kong, they make use of two types of calendars. The first one is the 農曆 (nung4 lik6), 舊曆 (gau6 lik6), or 陰曆 (jam1 lik6), which is known as the Traditional Chinese Calendar. This calendar is lunisolar, and it based its months, days according to astronomical phenomena. Hong Kongers also use this calendar as a basis for conducting funerals, weddings, or starting a business.

Hong Kong also uses the Gregorian calendar, which is the calendar that is also used in most countries in the world.

Date Format In Cantonese

Knowing how to write the date in Cantonese is important. Of course, you can do it in English but, it still nice to learn how to write and say it in Cantonese. This will help you take note of important dates to remember like your flight, important celebrations and holiday, and even birthdays of your friends and family. Here is how times are written in Cantonese.

[year]年 [month]月 [day]日 (nin4 / jyut6 / jat6).

This format is also used in different parts of the world, so it would not be hard for you to understand. What you need to do is to learn how to state months, days, and years in Cantonese. You will learn this as you go further on this blog.

Years In Cantonese — 年 (nin4)

Another important thing to learn about dates and times in Cantonese is the years. Giving the year in Cantonese is very interesting because, unlike in other languages, Cantonese reads each digit individually. For example, in the year 2021, when read in English, we would say (Two thousand twenty-one / Twenty twenty-one) But, for Cantonese, you would say (Two, Zero, Two, One).

Here are some examples of years in Cantonese.

Months Of The Year -月 (yut6)

In Cantonese, the character 月 (yut6) is used for the word “month.” To state the month in Cantonese, add the number order of the month before 月 (yut6). For example, January is the 1st month in a year so, you would say jat1 (1st) yut6 (month). Check out examples below for the Cantonese term for other months.

Days in Cantonese — 日 (jat6)

Writing day of the month in Cantonese is almost the same as what other countries do. 日 (jat6) is the Chinese character for “day.” So if you want to express day in Cantonese, add the number in front of the Chinese character 日 (jat6).

Example: baat3 jat6 (8th of the month)

Take note!

  1. Written and spoken form of stating dates is different.
  2. Use the Chinese character 日 (jat6) for writing. Use teh Chinese character 號 (hou6) for spoken
  3. Replace 二十 (ji6 sap6) with 廿 (jaa6) when speaking.

Days Of The Week

After learning the months of the year, you should also learn the days in a week. Here is the list of Cantonese days of the week.

Time In Cantonese — 時間 (si4 gaan1)

Telling time in Cantonese is pretty similar to how it is done in English. Start reading the hour, and the minute, then the time of the day.


Let us first talk about hours. Here are ways on how to tell the time in Cantonese:

number of hours (1–12) + 點 (dim2)

Minutes — 分鐘 (fan1 zung1).

After learning the hour, let us learn how to tell the time in Cantonese, including the minutes. To express hours and minutes, say the hour, then add the number (1–59) to the Chinese character 分 (fan1).

Take note! For numbers 1–9, we’ll add “0” in front, just like in English.

hour + 點 (dim2) + number of minutes past the hour

Here are some examples:

Quarters — 十五分鐘 (sap6 ng5 fan1 zung1)

For quarters, use the following:

Times Of The Day In Cantonese

You should also know the different times of the day when you are learning about dates and times in Cantonese. You also encounter some of these terms in learning the Basic Greetings in Cantonese.

Other Vocabulary Related To Time And Date In Cantonese

Part of learning the date and time in Cantonese is expanding your vocabulary. Here is some vocabulary that you can add to your list.

Let’s Practice Your Vocabulary About Date And Time In Cantonese

Had fun learning date and Time in Cantonese? Learning Cantonese and other languages will be easier when you practice a lot and use it in conversations. Below is some vocabulary about dates and times in Cantonese that will help you master your skills in written and spoken form.

It’s Time To Learn Cantonese!

Life is too short to limit yourself to learning another language. Your love for your own native language is irreplaceable but, would it hurt you to expand your horizons, connect to more people, and discover different cultures. You have just learned about the date and time in Cantonese. With that, you’re up to a good start. Do not waste any year, month, or day. Make it worth it! Learn Cantonese using Ling App now!



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