Mom And Dad In Korean

Like in many countries around the world, family is a huge part of Korean culture. As such, it is important to learn how to address family members, like mom and dad in Korean. In this lesson, you’ll learn how to say mom and dad in Korean. You’ll learn the informal, polite, and formal ways to say mom/mother dad/father and learn which one to use when you are addressing your mother/father in Korean.

Mom In Korean

Just like other Korean words and expressions, when saying mom in Korean there are different ways to say it depending on the situation and whether or not you want to use the informal, polite, or casual expression. The informal way is similar to “mom” or “mommy” in English, and the polite and formal ways are more like “mother”. Let’s look at the different ways to say mom in Korean starting with the informal way.

엄마 [eom-ma] – Informal

The casual/informal way to say mom in Korean is 엄마 [eom-ma]. As this is an informal word, you should only use it with your own mother. If you want to say “My mom” in Korean when talking about or referring to your own mother, you can say 우리 엄마 [u-ri eom-ma] which means ‘our mom’.

어머니 [eom-eo-ni] – Polite

The standard/polite way to say mom in Korean is 어머니 [eom-eo-ni]. As this is a polite word, you can use it in most situations and you will sound polite. Again, if you wanted to talk about or refer to your mom in a polite way you can use 우리 어머니 (our mother).

어머님 [eom-eo-nim] – Formal

The formal way to say mother in Korean is 어머님 [eom-eo-nim]. As this is a formal word, you can use it when addressing your mother in formal situations, or in situations when you just want to sound extra respectful.

Dad In Korean

Dad, or father, in Korean also has informal, polite, and formal expressions. The informal way is similar to how, in English, we would say “dad” or “daddy”, and the polite and formal ways are more like the “father”. Let’s take a look at the different ways to say dad in Korean starting with the casual/informal way.

아빠 [a-ppa] – Informal

The casual/informal way to say dad in Korean is 아빠 [a-ppa]. As this is an informal word, you should only use it with your own dad, and not when referring to someone else’s father. Again, just like when talking about your mom, when you want to say “My dad” in Korean, you can say 우리 아빠 (our dad).

아버지 [a-beo-ji] – Polite

The polite way to say dad in Korean is 아버지 [a-beo-ji]. As this is a polite word, you can use it in most situations and you will sound polite. You can say 우리 아버지 (our father) when you are talking about or referring to your own father.

아버님 [a-beo-nim] – Formal

The formal way to say father in Korean is 아버님 [a-beo-nim]. As you can see, just like the formal word for mom (어머님) it includes the formal suffix 님. This is used often in Koran after a subject’s name to address people formally. So, if you want to address or talk about your father in formal situations you can use 아버님.


Thanks for reading. I hope you now have a better understanding of what to call mom and dad in Korean. Before you go, check out our free lesson on Korean Family Members to learn related expressions about family.