How To Say Okay in Chinese

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Learn how to say “Okay” and “Not Okay” in Mandarin Chinese
In Chinese, the words “okay”, “good” and “fine” have very similar meanings and therefore, they share the same character, 好 [hǎo]. Frequently, we use the word 好 [hǎo] to form and answer questions. There are many ways for Chinese people to ask questions. While in English one can use question words such as “Can” How” and “Why” to ask questions, it does not work in the Chinese language. More, in English people often answer questions with yes and no, it also does not work in Chinese. One way for Chinese people to ask question is by using verb-negation-verb phrases. To learn more, watch our YouTube video.

What is the meaning of 好不好[hǎo bù hǎo]?
[hǎo bù hǎo] is a verb phrase that is used for asking a question.The phrase is composed of two verbs – [hǎo] and [hǎo] and is always placed at the end of a sentence. While in English a structure for asking question a may look like this: “would you like to watch a movie?”, in Chinese the same question has a structure like this: “go watch a movie, 好不好?” This phrase gives your listeners alternatives between two choices. In this case, if you chose “yes”, say 好[hǎo] and if you chose “no”, say不好[bù hǎo].




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Q&A – How to Answer Questions with Okay / Not Okay

English Meaning Pinyin Chinese Characters
Q: How are you? nǐ hǎo ma 你好吗?
A: I am fine. wǒ hěn hǎo 我很好?
Q: Shall we eat out? wǒ men qù chū chī fàn hǎo bù hǎo 我们出去吃饭 , 好不好?
A: Yes / No hǎo / bù hǎo 好/不好
Q: Can you give me a call tomorrow? nǐ míng tiān dǎ diàn huà gěi wǒ hǎo ma? 你明天打电话给我好吗?
A: Yes / No hǎo / bù hǎo 好/不好
Q: Can you please stop lying? qǐng nǐ bù yào zài shuō huǎng hǎo ma? 请你不要再说谎好吗?
A: Okay / Not Okay hǎo / bù hǎo 好/不好
Q: How have you been lately? nǐ zuìjìnguò de hǎobù hǎo? 你最近过的好不好?
A: I live happily with nothing good or bad happening to me. méi shén me hǎo bù hǎo de, wǒ guò hěn kuài lè 没什么好不好的,我过很快乐