16 Ways to say “Yes” in Chinese

One of the first things you usually remember when learning a new language is how to say “Yes”. In this article we will teach you some of the most common methods to express “Yes” in Chinese. Learning to answer “Yes” in various ways can make you appear more natural and your Chinese flow more naturally.


There is no direct translation of “Yes”

Because the English word “Yes” does not have a literal counterpart in Mandarin, saying “Yes” in Chinese may be difficult. The only way to say “Yes” in Chinese is to consider the context.

There are additional words and phrases that we use in a variety of situations to express “Yes” in Chinese. Depending on the case, “Yes” can also be stated as sure, OK, no problem, etc. 

The more ways you know to say “Yes” in Chinese, as in English, the more natural you’ll sound. Here are 16 common ways to say “Yes” in Chinese.


16 CommonWays to Say “Yes” in Chinese

1 shì 是 to be; yes

In Chinese, one method to say yes is to say shì 是. It’s typically used to confirm the truth of something, comparable to how we may respond to a similar inquiry in English with “yes, I am” or “yes, it is.”

Consider the following examples to show how this works:

A: Nǐ shì jīnglǐ ma? 你是经理吗? Are you the manager?

B: Shì. 是。 Yes, I am.

A: Nǐ shì bú shì mìshū. 你是不是秘书? Are you the secretary? 

B: Shì. 是。 Yes, I am.


2 shì de 是的 Yes

Shì de 是的 is another variant of shì 是. Shì de 是的 has a more professional and polite tone than shì 是 by itself. An example is when a subordinate wants to react affirmatively to a manager, supervisor, or others in a more senior position.

A: Nǐ shì zuò fēijī lái de ma? 你是坐飞机来的吗?Did you come by plane?

B: Shì de. 是的。Yes, that’s right.


3 duì 对 correct

Saying duì 对 means correct and is another common way to say yes in Chinese. If a query includes duì 对, the response is more likely to be duì 对.

A: Tā shì nǐ de tóngxué, duì ma? 她是你的同学,对吗?She’s your classmate, right?

B: Duì. 对。Yes, that’s right.

Duì 对 is also often used to agree with a statement that someone else has made, as in the following example:

A: Wǒ juédé Lìjiāng hěn měi. 我觉得丽江很美。 I think that Lijiang (in Yunnan) is beautiful.

B: Duì. 对。 Yes, I think so too.


4 zhèng què 正确 Yes, that is correct.

You say that something is zhèng què 正确 when there is only one correct answer possible. 

A: Kūnmíng shì Yúnnán de shěnghuì ma? 昆明是云南的省会吗?

Is Kunming the capital of Yunnan?

B: Zhèng què. 正确 Correct.


5 méi cuò 没错 not wrong

The expression méi cuò 没错 is a different way of saying yes in Chinese. It’s similar to duì 对 because it is usually used to agree with someone else’s statement.

In the expression méi cuò 没错, méi 没 means “not” while cuò 错 means “wrong”. You will say méi cuò 没错 if you agree with someone else’s point of view.

A: Húnán cài hěn là. 湖南菜很辣。Hunan food is very spicy.

B: Méicuò. 没错。 Yes, that’s right.


6 hǎo 好 good

Hǎo 好 is an alternative way of saying “yes” in Chinese. The simplest basic definition of hǎo 好 is “good.” But hǎo 好 can also mean “fine” or “OK.”

A: Wǒmen zhōumò qù gòuwù ba. 我们周末去购物吧。Let’s go shopping this weekend. 

B: Hǎo. 好。OK, sounds good.

While you can use hǎo 好 by itself, it is also possible to subtly alter the meaning of your response by adding other particles at the end. You can add the particle de 的 and then create hǎo de 好的 OK. When agreeing to a customer’s request, people in the service business frequently utilize the expression hǎo de 好的 OK.

A: Nǐ kěyǐ jìnlái huìyì shì ma? 你可以进来会议室吗?Can you come into the meeting room?

B: Hǎo de. 好的。 Sure, will do.


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7 hǎo ya 好呀 OK (in an enthusiastic say)

If you include the particle ya 呀 to hǎo 好, you get hǎo ya 好呀. This usage makes you sound enthusiastic about whatever entertaining idea or activity the person you’re speaking with has recommended.

A: Wǒmen yīqǐ qù zhōngguó lǚxíng ba. 我们一起去中国旅行吧。Let’s travel to China together.

B: Hǎo ya! 好呀! OK!


8 Hǎo ba 好吧 that is OK (in a reluctant way)

In contrast to hǎo ya 好呀, if you answer someone using hǎo 好 plus the particle ba 吧, which is hǎo ba 好吧, this makes you sound dissatisfied with whatever the person you’re dealing with is presenting.

Hǎo ba 好吧 is a way to accept someone’s offer, but it’s a reluctant acceptance that implies you’d instead not do whatever has been proposed.

A: Nǐ bāng wǒ fùxí yīxià Zhōngwén hǎo ma? 你帮我复习一下中文好吗?Can you help me review Chinese?

B: Hǎo ba. 好吧。 OK.


9 hǎo le 好了 OK

If you include the particle le 了, then you say hǎo le 好了. You can respond to particular queries about whether or not an action is finished with this phrase to express yes, it is finished.

A: Fàn zuò hǎole ma? 饭做好了吗?Is the meal ready?

B: Hǎo le! 好了! Yep, It’s ready!

The phrase hǎo le 好了 can have negative connotations in specific settings. You often see this in use as a response to someone putting you under pressure to complete or accomplish something faster or more efficiently. In this circumstance, it makes you sound irritated.

A: Nǐ hái mò shōushí hǎo ma? 你还没收拾好吗?Have you packed up yet?

B: Hǎole, hǎole, wǒ yǐjīng shōushí hǎole 好了,好了,我已经收拾好了。

Ok, ok, I have already finished packaging up.


10 kěyǐ 可以 can; may. It indicates permission.

The phrase kěyǐ 可以 is yet another method to say “yes” in Chinese. It is frequently used when requesting or providing permission to accomplish something. It translates as “sure, you can.”

Note that if a question involves kěyǐ 可以, the answer likely has a response with kěyǐ 可以 as well.

A: Wǒ kěyǐ dǎ diànhuà ma? 我可以打电话吗?Can I call?

B: Kěyǐ.可以。Sure you can.


11 xíng 行 OK; alright

Xíng 行 means OK. It is used to respond positively when someone makes a request or asks for permission. Its application is comparable to that of kěyǐ 可以.

A: Bāng wǒ dài yī zhī bǐ. 帮我带一支笔。Bring me a pen.

B: Xíng! 行!OK!


12 Ok了 – OK le

They are used as an informal manner of stating that some work has been completed and to respond positively.

A: Wèntí dōu jiějuéle ma? 问题都解决了吗? Have you resolved the issues?

B: Ok了. — Yes, I have.


13 èn 嗯 yeah

By saying èn 嗯, you respond in an informal way. In casual discussions and on Chinese social media, it’s common for Chinese friends to say “OK.” It sounds similar to the English word “uh-huh.”

A: Nǐ zài shàngbān ma? 你在上班吗?Are you working?

B: Èn. 嗯。 Uh-huh.


14 méi wèntí 没问题 no problem

Méi wèntí 没问题 is a typical Chinese expression that means “no problem”.

A: Nǐ néng gěi wǒ yībēi shuǐ ma? 你能给我一杯水吗?Can you give me a glass of water?

B: Méi wèntí. 没问题。 Sure, no problem.


15 dāngrán 当然 of course

Dāngrán 当然 is a solid affirmative statement that expresses beyond a doubt. You sound very confident in yourself when you respond in this manner.

A: Nǐ huì shuō Zhōngwén ma? 你会说中文吗?Do you speak Chinese?

B: Dāngrán. 当然。Yes, of course.


16 Repeating the verb or the adjective in the question

The Chinese grammatical form that involves repeating the query’s main verb or adjective is an efficient approach for new Chinese learners to communicate effectively.

This type of repetition is most commonly used with verbs. As a result, even if you’re a beginner with a limited Chinese vocabulary, you can employ this method as long as you learn commonly used Chinese verbs such as yào 要 want, yǒu 有 have, and huì 会 be able to.

The following examples demonstrate the use of these essential Chinese verbs:

A: Nǐ yào qù Yúnnán lǚxíng ma? 你要去云南旅行吗?Are you going to travel to Yunnan?

B: Yào! 要! Yes!

A: Nǐ néng zuò fàn ma? 你能做饭吗?Can you cook?

B: Néng 能 can.

You can also do this with adjectives. In the following example, the adjective hǎokàn 好看 “good looking” occurs both in the question and the answer, yielding a positive response:

A: Nǐ juédé zhè tiáo qúnzi hǎokàn ma? 你觉得这条裙子好看吗?Do you think this skirt looks good?

B: Hǎokàn. 好看。Yes, it looks good.


Say Yes in the correct way, in the right situation

One of the essential things for beginning Chinese language students to learn is how to say Yes. We hope that the explanations and examples provided above will assist you in your quest to react to inquiries like a native Chinese.

Saying yes in appropriate contexts will help you avoid being misinterpreted. Practicing with your Chinese teacher is an excellent approach to obtaining a more in-depth understanding of the language. Once you’ve learned the ability to say Yes in the same way that a native Chinese does, your Chinese will have improved, and your life in China will be much easier!



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