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Your Ultimate Filipino Pronunciation Guide

Knowing how to correctly pronounce words when you learn to speak a new language is crucial for speaking it well. It is no different with Filipino. At FilipinoPod101, we put a lot of emphasis on teaching and demonstrating correct pronunciation, as it is our aim to help you to speak like a native after a while!

According to Dictionary.com, ‘pronunciation’ is: the act or result of producing the sounds of speech, including articulation, stress, and intonation, often with reference to some standard of correctness or acceptability.

Paying attention to your Filipino pronunciation not your own essentially means you’re learning to ditch most of your foreign accent. This is very important if you want to be a successful communicator in any language. Getting Filipino pronunciation right may seem like a daunting task at the onset, but it need not be!

Download Your FREE Guide to the Filipino Alphabet!

If you want to master the Filipino language and become fluent, you must learn the Filipino alphabet letters first. And you need physical worksheets to practice on.

This eBook is a MUST-HAVE for all Filipino learning beginners!

FREE Filipino eBook

Download your FREE Filipino practice sheets PDF today and learn the Filipino language in no time!
This is a must-have guide for absolute beginners

1. Introduction to Filipino Pronunciation

Filipino Pronunciation

Proper pronunciation in the Filipino language of Tagalog is important for a number of reasons. You want to be able to sound like a native speaker, and you want others to be able to understand your words. Just as grammar is important, proper Filipino pronunciation is vital to knowing the language. It also helps you when you are listening to speakers of the language, so you can understand what it is that they are saying and so you can process it more quickly. Because native speakers speak very quickly, understanding pronunciation and being able to hear it will improve your grasp of what is happening with speakers around you.

Sounds and Syllables

The new Filipino alphabet contains 28 letters. The letters include a, b, d, e, f, g, h, I, j, k, l, m, n, Ñ, ng, o, p, q, r, s, t, u, v, w, x, y, and z. The older alphabet had only 15 consonants and 5 vowels. The addition of the other 8 letters that make up the current alphabet – c, f, j, Ñ, q, v, x, and z – are used in foreign words. Many of the letters in the alphabet have the same pronunciation as the English alphabet except for Ñ, which is pronounced as enye. You will find that the vowels of the language – a, e, i, o, and u – all have pronunciation that is similar to Spanish or Italian vowels. Filipino pronunciation can take some time to learn if you are only listening to native speakers because they usually speak quickly.The Filipino language also has several different dialects, and they have different ways of speaking and even different words in some cases. Still, many of the native speakers are able to speak more than one dialect so when you learn Tagalog, which is the most prevalent of the languages, you should have no trouble communicating.


You will find three stresses in Filipino pronunciation. The stress is going to go on the first syllable for words that have two syllables. If the word has three syllables, the stress is going to go on the second syllable. For words that have three or more syllables, the stress is going to be on the third syllable.Pronunciation is important in any language. It can make all the difference in the world when you are speaking to someone, so it pays to learn the proper way to speak.

2. Why is Correct Pronunciation in Filipino Important?

Correct Pronunciation

Proper pronunciation is important, very important. Some say it’s even more important than getting the grammar perfectly correct! Why would this be?

1) Good Understanding

If communicating with native speakers matters to you when learning Filipino, you need to be understood when you talk, and you need to be able to understand the native speakers. After all, without understanding, the purpose of language is null and void! In order to be understood, you need to be able to speak the language in a way that is familiar to native speakers, or at least recognizable by them.

When learning to speak a new language, you will learn that the more you progress the more intricate it becomes! For instance, almost every language has vocabulary that may look the same in writing, but because the words are pronounced differently, they have very different meanings. This means that you may say a word in Filipino, and because of a slight change in pronunciation, the meaning of the word changes completely. Understandably, this can make for pretty embarrassing situations! At worst, your mispronounced Filipino will sound garbled to a native speaker.

Knowing the nuances of how a word or letter is pronounced will also help you to understand spoken Filipino better.

No worries if this feels hard; you’re learning, and with our help at FilipinoPod101, you will not have a problem with mispronunciation if you follow our advice and examples carefully.

2) Good Communication

Not pronouncing Filipino or any other language correctly can lead to a lot of frustration because you’re unable to express what you mean, and you will not be understood correctly. Even if you have total knowledge of Filipino grammar, and can write it like a native, not knowing how to speak it properly will only make for very frustrating communication all around.

3) A Good Impression

Even if you’re only a beginner, it is possible to speak any language correctly. This way, you are bound to make a good impression on native speakers, and when you’re more fluent, you will be likely to garner a lot more respect than a fumbling newbie speaker who doesn’t care much for correct pronunciation.

People often have a lot of patience for someone who learns to speak a new language, but native speakers are more likely to address you and engage with you in conversation if you work hard on your accent. This is simply because you’ll be able to understand one another! So, proficiency in pronunciation can mean the difference between having none or plenty of Filipino speaking friends. It will also serve you well in the workplace, and make you popular with your Filipino speaking managers and employers or employees.

Learning to speak Filipino properly is also a sign of respect for not only the language, but also the native speakers and their customs.

3. Secrets to Learning the Correct Filipino Pronunciation

Secrets to Learning

1) Use voice recording tools to perfect your pronunciation

FilipinoPod101 has plenty of resources to help you with your Filipino pronunciation, so be sure to make thorough use of our recordings with native Filipino speakers. These are available not only to demonstrate to you how you should pronounce Filipino vocabulary, but also sentences and dialogues. Watch and listen to these over and over again to train your ear, and watch the teacher’s mouth as she speaks in the video lessons. Then, copy the speech as best you can. Later, you can record yourself to hear if you sound like a native speaker and compare yourself with native speakers. Great for self-motivation.

2) Practice in front of the mirror.

And see that you’re copying the correct lip and mouth movements.

3) Use our FilipinoPod101 dictionary!

Use the Filipino dictionary provided by FilipinoPod101 to look up words and listen to the audio pronunciation. This will go a long way towards giving you an idea of how to pronounce a word or letter correctly.

4) Train your ear to the language!

Make an effort to often listen to Filipino music and recorded books, and watch plenty of Filipino movies and/or TV shows in Filipino. This will train your ear to the language, and you’ll be surprised how quickly you pick up the accent. Remember, this is the way we learned to speak when we were young - mostly by listening to the adults talking, and repeating what they say!

5) Practice, practice, practice…

Repetition of the same thing may be boring, but in learning a new language, you’re creating new pathways in your brain. For these to remain and become habitual, you will need to repeat the correct pronunciation often.

6) Make friends with a native Filipino speaker.

Don’t be shy to address them in Filipino! Ask them to correct you when you make a pronunciation mistake - this is a wonderful way to practice and learn the language first-hand, and also to make new friends.

7) Practice your pronunciation with your Filipino teacher!

If you’re a serious student and don’t know where to meet native Filipino speakers, consider investing in FilipinoPod101’s Premium PLUS plan. This means you will have your own native Filipino teacher available to practice your pronunciation with, and much more! Send recordings of yourself speaking Filipino and get feedback from your Filipino teacher.

4. How to Download Your Free Guide to the Filipino Alphabet

Download Your FREE Guide to the Filipino Alphabet!

If you want to master the Filipino language and become fluent, you must learn the Filipino alphabet letters first. And you need physical worksheets to practice on.

This eBook is a MUST-HAVE for all Filipino learning beginners!

FREE Filipino eBook

Download your FREE Filipino practice sheets PDF today and learn the Filipino language in no time!
This is a must-have guide for absolute beginners

Log in with Your Free Lifetime Account and we’ll give you an instructional Filipino PDF that covers the letters of the alphabet, practice worksheets, and a quiz to test yourself with… — absolutely FREE!

3 Reasons to Learn Filipino Through PDF Lessons

Let’s now take a closer look at how studying Filipino lessons in PDF format can help you reach your dream in up to half the time of normal video or audio lessons!

① Saves Minutes on Your Data Plan

Learning Filipino through PDF lessons can dramatically reduce your data use. Once a lesson or tool is downloaded, you can then access it offline via your computer or smartphone any time or place regardless of Internet access. And once you’ve downloaded the Filipino lessons in PDF format, you can actually access them faster than logging in and trying to do so via a live site. So not only will learning Filipino using PDF lessons save minutes on your data plan—it will save you some significant time as well as the lessons add up!

② Print and Take All Filipino Lessons and PDF Tools With You Anywhere

Sometimes, a tiny smartphone screen just isn’t adequate, especially when you are trying to learn something new. The great thing about PDF lessons, tools or files is that they can be quickly printed and taken anywhere after you download them. In fact, printing out Filipino lessons in PDF format can actually save you time when compared to going through the material on a smartphone with a small screen—even with the extra printing time!

③ Great Study Tool to Boost Retention and Mastery

Studying video or audio lessons online is a great way to learn a language because students can play and rewind sections as many times as needed until the lesson is mastered. But when you review the same Filipino lessons again in PDF format, an incredible thing happens: your retention dramatically improves! Thanks to Time Spaced Repetition, seeing the information again in written format helps reinforce the information in your mind and improves both retention and recall. The benefits of learning Filipino using PDF lessons quickly add up to significant time savings for you, your data plan, and your dream of learning a new language!

Why are we giving it away?

Learning to read and write is a must for all beginners. Although you get video lessons on how to write in Filipino at FilipinoPod101, you’ll still need physical worksheets to practice on. That’s why you’re getting this printable tutorial PDFs as a gift.

5. Related Lessons

How to Say Hello in Filipino
Do you know how to say hello in Filipino? It’s the most basic phrase that you’ll need to say and hear in everyday life. If you don’t know yet, learn 15 ways to say hello and greet others in Filipino. Why 15? The more variations you know, the more you can speak and the more fluent you become!
How to Introduce Yourself in Filipino
Can you introduce yourself in Filipino? Don’t worry! Check out the 10 Filipino Lines You Need To Introduce Yourself with this free Review Sheet. From “My name is…“ and “I live in…” down to “My hobbies are…” Just review the 10 lines. It will only take you 2 minutes. Then, introduce yourself in the comment section below!
Filipino Alphabet
Learn everything you need to know about the Filipino alphabet. At FilipinoPod101, we introduce you to Filipino writing in simple, easy-to-follow steps, and you can ask for advice or help anywhere along the way. It is important to master the Filipino alphabet completely from the start.
How to Say Thank You in Filipino
Has anyone thanked you today? We will. Thank you for reading this article and learning with us! In fact, today, you’ll learn the many different ways to say “Thank You” in Filipino. It’s one of the most important Filipino phrases. Check it out and watch the video too to practice your pronunciation.

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