How to Say ‘Are You Okay’ & ‘It’s Okay in Korean’


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If a friend or family member looks distressed or troubled, you will probably want to ask them if they’re okay and how they are doing. Today, we’re going to teach you a common phrase based on a common verb that you will quickly be able to use in daily conversation. If you’re familiar with a post we did a while ago here, you’ll see that this phrase is very versatile. So let’s start!

괜찮아? (gwaen-cha-na)

This is the most common way to ask is someone is okay/are you okay. It’s based on the verb 괜찮다 and it means ‘to be okay’. 괜찮아 is the casual form that you would use with your close friends, towards younger people, and family. This phrase can be said by itself, or you can call someone by their name and title, and add it on at the end.

For higher forms of politeness, you would use the following:

괜찮아요? (standard politeness used with people you’re not familiar with who are around the same age )

괜찮으세요? (can also use with people you don’t know around the same age as you, but also towards people older than you)

Let’s check out some examples:

난 안 괜찮아요! (nan an gwaen-cha-na-yo) = I’m not okay!

난 이제 괜찮아. (nan i-je gwaen-cha-na) = I’m okay now.

너 안 괜찮아 보여. (neo an gwaen-cha-na bo-yeo) = You don’t look okay.

왜 그래? (wae geu-rae)

The second phrase here is translated as ‘What’s the matter?’ or ‘What’s wrong?’ It’s just another way of asking ‘Are you okay?’ and is also used very frequently. To turn this into the standard polite form, you would change it to ‘왜 그래요?’.

Examples:

오늘 너 왜 그래? (o-neul neo wae geu-rae) = What’s wrong with you today?

왜 그래? 괜찮아? (wae geu-rae? gwaen-cha-na?) = What’s wrong? Are you okay?

무슨 일 있어요? (mu-seun il i-sseo-yo)

This phrase has the rough translation of ‘Is there something wrong?’ or ‘Is everything okay?’.

Examples:

또 무슨 일 있어? (tto mu-seun il i-sseo) = Did something happen again?

요즘 무슨 일 있어요? (yo-jeum mu-seun il i-sseo-yo) = Is there something going on with you lately?

기분 안 좋아? (gi-bun an jo-a)

Finally, we have another common phrase which the literal translation means ‘Is your feeling not good?’. You can still use this to ask if someone is okay or if they’re in a bad mood/pissed off.

Examples:

오늘 기분 안 좋아. (o-neul kki-bun an jo-a) = I’m not in a good mood today.

너 왜 기분이 안 좋아? (neo wae gi-bu-ni an jo-a) = Why are you in a bad mood?

So these are the four phrases you can use to ask someone if they’re okay. Use these confidently and see you next time!



Whether you want to understand basic words in K-pop or K-dramas, impress your Korean friends, or simply deepen your connection to the Korean culture, the Korean Language Starter Pack ensures that you quickly learn and retain the most commonly used Korean words and phrases today. Click here to learn more.