What Languages Are Spoken in the Philippines?

what languages are spoken in the philippines

Interesting Facts about the Philippines

The Philippines is an island country in Southeast Asia in the western Pacific Ocean. It has more than 7,000 islands, but only around 2,000 are inhabited with a population of more than 100 million people.

The Philippines is famous for having an abundance of beautiful beaches and delicious fruit. Also, it is one of the world’s largest producers of coconuts. It has the best economy in Southeast Asia and is one of the best-performing economies in the world.

In this article, we will discover which languages are spoken in the Philippines. So take a seat and enjoy the journey!

Facts about the Philippines’ languages

There are about 183 living languages currently spoken in the Philippines, the majority of which are indigenous tongues. So it is not surprising to find two random people in the Philippines who grew up speaking different languages.

Official Languages of the Philippines:

There are two official languages of the Philippines: Filipino and English.

Filipino vs. Tagalog

Filipino is the national language and is primarily used in schools and the media. It is an updated version of Tagalog, which includes elements of other native Philippine languages.

Filipino has 28 letters in its alphabet including z,x,c,j, and k. It includes sounds and words from other Philippines languages like Cebuano and Kapampangan. It also uses words and phonics from foreign languages such as Spanish, English, Sanskrit, Chinese, Arabic, and Malay. Many of these words can’t be handled by the 20-letter alphabet of the Tagalog language.


Between the years of 1898 and 1946 and during the time of being a US territory, English was recognized as one of the official languages of the Philippines and is spoken by more than 14 million Filipinos. It is widely used in commerce, law, and education.

what are Other Major Languages in philippine?

Philippines culture

About 21 languages are spoken regionally in the Philippines including Aklanon, Basian, Bikol, Cebuano, Chavacano, Hiligaynon, Ibanag, Ilocano, Ilonggo, Ivatan, Maranao, Tagalog, Kapampangan, Kinaray-a, Waray, Maguindanao, Pangasinan, Sambal, Surigaonon, Tausug, and Yakan.

These languages represent the major indigenous languages of the Philippines and are spoken by a large population of native speakers. The majority of these languages belong to the Malayo-Polynesian language family sub-group, which belongs to the Austronesian language family.

Foreign Languages:

The Philippines is home to a large number of immigrants, which is reflected in its wide variety of foreign languages including Arabic, Japanese, Spanish, Chinese, Malay, Tamil, and Korean. Many regional languages in the country use words and phonics from these languages, especially in the names of foods and household items.


The Philippines is home to hundreds of dialects and languages. You will find variations between towns on the same island and notice that people grew up speaking different languages. However, keep in mind that most Filipinos speak English and you will often hear a mix of English and Filipino languages as they are the official languages of the country.

Please leave a comment below and let us know if you have any more questions about the languages spoken in the Philippines or any questions about the Asian Language Services.