There are two major native languages used in Sri Lanka The Sinhala spoken by the Sinhalese majority and Tamil language used by the Tamils. Both Sinhala and Tamil completly different languages and come from different roots however due to intermingling of the people both share some common characteristics and have influence on each other's linguistic evolution as well.
Sri Lanka having 99% literacy rate has a great understanding of English. The following phrases can be a good way to be polite and be more interested in the culture of Sri Lanka.
Hello : hello
Please: karuna kara
Thank you: stuh-tee
Thank you very much : Bom stuh-tee
Excuse me: sama venna
Sorry: kana gaatui
How much is it?: ehekka keeyada?
What is your name?: oyaaghe nama mokka da?
My name is..: maaghe namaŽ
When does the next bus leave/arrive?: meelanga bas eka pitat venne/peminenne?
Bus: bas eka
Plane: plane eka
I'd like a one way ticket: mata tani gaman tikat ekek ganna ohna
I'd like a return ticket: mata yam-eem tikat ekek ganna ohna
Train station: dumriya pala
Ferry terminal: totu pala
Where is that?: at koheda?
Turn left/right: wamata/dakunata herenna
Basic words in a city
My hotel: mang inna hotalaya
Market: maakat eka
Post office: tepal kantohruwa
Small: podi, punchi
Go away!: metanin yanna!
I am lost: mang ivarai/mang vinaasai
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