How to Discuss the Weather in Chinese: 27 Words and Phrases to Break the Ice
One way to break the ice with a Chinese speaker is to ask about the 天气 (tiān qì) — weather.
Many Mandarin-speaking cultures see weather talk exactly the same way Westerners do—it’s a culturally appropriate, polite way to greet a new person and open a conversation.
If you’re not confident enough to break out a joke, why not open a social situation with a simple comment about the weather?
Here are 27 Chinese weather words and phrases to help you start (and continue!) a conversation.
- Chinese Weather Vocabulary Words
- Chinese Weather Phrases and Questions
- And One More Thing...
Chinese Weather Vocabulary Words
|Weather Word||Sentence Example|
(jīn tiān hěn rè.)
It is very hot today.
(nǐ xiǎng shòu zhè wēn nuǎn de tiān qì ma?)
Are you enjoying this warm day?
cool and pleasant
(tiān qì liáng kuai.)
The weather is cool and pleasant.
(jīn tiān tiān qì hěn lěng.)
Today, the weather is cold.
(xiàn zài de wēn dù shì duō shǎo?)
What is the temperature right now?
(huá shì dù)
(měi guó rén shǐ yòng huá shì dù.)
Americans use degrees Fahrenheit.
(shè shì dù)
(dà duō shù guó jiā shǐ yòng shè shì dù.)
Most countries use degrees Celsius.
(zuó tiān de tiān qì qíng lǎng.)
It was sunny yesterday.
(jīn tiān tiān qì yù bào duō yún.)
Today’s weather forecast is cloudy.
(xià yǔ le.)
It is raining.
(jīn tiān zǎo shang yǒu fēng.)
It is windy this morning.
(kàn kàn xuě!)
Look at the snow!
(zài zhè wù zhōng wǒ kàn bú jiàn.)
I can’t see in this fog.
(zhè ge zhōu mò huì yǒu tái fēng.)
There will be a typhoon this weekend.
(zuį jìn kōng qì hěn cháo shī.)
The air is very humid these days.
(jīn tiān kōng qì hěn gān zào.)
The air is dry today.
(yì nián yǒu sì gè jì jié.)
There are four seasons in a year.
(zhè shì yī gè hán lěng de dōng tiān.)
This is one cold winter.
(chūn tiān shì zuì měi de jì jié!)
Spring is the most beautiful season!
(wǒ ài xià tiān.)
I love summer.
(qiū tiān shì wǒ zuì xǐ huān de jì jié.)
Fall is my favorite season.
Chinese Weather Phrases and Questions
Pinyin: jīn tiān de tiān qì yù bào zěn me yàng?
English: What’s the weather forecast today?
This is by far the best opener when talking about the weather. Quick, simple, clear and to the point!
Before jumping into asking about the weather, you could start with 你好吗？(nǐ hǎo ma) — “What’s up?” or 早上好！(zǎo shang hǎo!) — “Good morning!”
An expansion of this phrase would be:
这个星期的天气预报怎么样？(zhè ge xīng qī de tiān qì yù bào zěn me yàng?) — What’s the weather forecast for this week?
Location + 的天气怎么样？
Pinyin: [location] + de tiān qì zěn me yàng?
English: What’s the weather like in [location]?
Planning a trip? It’s best to figure out the time of year you’ll be there first. Then, learn the Mandarin pronunciation of the location you’ll be visiting, such as 北京 (běi jīng) — Beijing or 台北 (tái běi) — Taipei, and say the name at the start of this phrase.
In response, you may hear something like:
最近，北京很冷。(zuì jìn, běi jīng hěn lěng.) — Recently, Beijing has been quite cold.
台北常常下雨。(tái běi cháng cháng xià yǔ.) — It rains often in Taipei.
今天天气 + weather condition
Pinyin: jīn tiān tiān qì + [weather condition]
English: Today, the weather is [weather condition]
You can use this phrase as a conversation opener, or you may hear it in response to one of the questions above.
The end of the sentence can be filled in with one or more of the vocabulary words above, or you can use one of these simple, straightforward phrases:
今天天气很好。(jīn tiān tiān qì hěn hǎo.) — Today, the weather is good.
今天天气不好。(jīn tiān tiān qì bù hǎo.) — Today, the weather is bad.
Pinyin: jīn tiān duō shǎo dù?
English: What’s the temperature today?
You may get an estimate or more specific response, as shown below:
今天10度(左右)。(jīn tiān 10 dù [zuǒ yòu].) — Today it’s 10 degrees (give or take).
现在32摄氏度。(xiàn zài 32 shè shì dù.) — Right now it’s 32 degrees Celsius.
Pinyin: yáng guāng míng mèi.
English: The sun shines brightly.
This is a common Chinese idiom used to describe a particularly sunny or beautiful day.
Saying 那里很温暖 (nà lǐ hěn wēn nuǎn) — “It is warm there” simply won’t do!
Learning the weather in Chinese is pretty simple, isn’t it? You can use these Chinese weather words to open up many new conversations, or learn them by hearing them in context on the FluentU program.
FluentU takes authentic videos—like music videos, movie trailers, news and inspiring talks—and turns them into personalized language learning lessons.
Review your new weather terms and phrases, and then go break the ice with a Mandarin-speaking friend!
And One More Thing...
If you want to continue learning Chinese with interactive and authentic Chinese content, then you'll love FluentU.
FluentU naturally eases you into learning Chinese language. Native Chinese content comes within reach, and you'll learn Chinese as it's spoken in real life.
FluentU has a wide range of contemporary videos—like dramas, TV shows, commercials and music videos.
FluentU brings these native Chinese videos within reach via interactive captions. You can tap on any word to instantly look it up. All words have carefully written definitions and examples that will help you understand how a word is used. Tap to add words you'd like to review to a vocab list.
FluentU's Learn Mode turns every video into a language learning lesson. You can always swipe left or right to see more examples for the word you're learning.
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