Yes and No in Korean

In this lesson you will learn how to say yes and no in Korean. These basic Korean words will help you to answer simple questions in Korean.

The Korean words in this lesson are written in both Hangul and English. If you’ve not yet learned how to read the Korean alphabet, check out our complete Korean alphabet guide to help you learn how to read in Korean.

So, how do you say yes and no in Korean? There are a few different ways but here are most common ways to say yes and no:

네 (ne) – Yes.

아니요 (aniyo) – No.

네 and 아니요 are the polite way to yes and no in Korean.

In Korean language there are different politeness levels. When speaking to close friends and people younger than you, you can use casual / informal language which is called 반말 (ban-mal) in Korean. When speaking to strangers and people older than you or ‘higher up’ socially, such as a teacher or your boss at work etc, then you should use polite language which is called 존댓말 (jon-dae-mal).

네 is 존댓말 so it is the polite way to say yes in Korean.

아니요 is also 존댓말. 아니요 is made up of 아니 (no) plus the polite ending 요. As you learn more and more Korean you will notice many words end in this ‘요’. This because the word is being expressed in the polite way.

Example Sentences With Yes and No

A: 김치 좋아해요? (Kimchi jo a hae yo?) -Do you like kimchi?

B: 네. 좋아해요 (ne. Jo a hae yo) – Yes. I like it.

A: 김치 좋아해요? (Kimchi jo a hae yo?) -Do you like kimchi?

B: 아니요. 안 좋아해요 (aniyo. An jo a hae yo) – No. I don’t like it.

Negative Yes / No Questions

An important thing to learn about using yes and no in Korean is that the way it is used with negative questions is different to how we use yes and no in English.

In English if someone asks you a negative question such as “You don’t like kimchi?” and you answer “No.” it means that you do not like kimchi. However, in Korean if someone asks the same question “김치 안 좋아해요?” and you answer no (아니요) it means that you like kimchi.

This is because in Korean, yes(네) and no (아니요) express your agreement or disagreement with what someone is saying. So in the above example, when asked 김치 안 좋아해요? (You don’t like kimchi?) by answering 아니요 (no) it means ‘No, i disagree. I do like kimchi.’

Example Sentences

A: 밥 안 좋아해요? (Bap an jo a hae yo?) – You don’t like rice?

B: 네. 안 좋아해요. (Ne. An jo a hae yo.) – Yes. I don’t like rice. (in English – No. I don’t like rice.)

A: 밥 안 좋아해요? (Bap an jo a hae yo?) – You don’t like rice?

B: 아니요. 좋아해요. (Ne. An jo a hae yo.) – No. I like rice. (in English – Yes. I like rice.)

More Ways To Say Yes and No In Korean

There are more ways to say yes or no in Korean. For now, you can just remember 네 and 아니요 as these can be used in most Korean conversations.

Here is a list of other ways to say yes and no in Korean that you might hear.

  • 예 (ye) – Yes in formal language.
  • 응 (eung) – Yes in casual language (반말)
  • 어 (eo) – Yes in casual language (반말)
  • 아니 (ani) – No in casual language (반말)

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