How to tell time in Swahili

Telling time is one of the important things in Swahili language. The Swahili people normally use a 12-hour format in telling time. Every hour appears twice a day. There are terms used to clarify time. For example, asubuhi (morning), mchana (morning), jioni (evening), usiku (night), kamili (o’clock),  The following are the twelve hours in Swahili:

Saa moja kamili asubuhi (07:00 am)

Saa mbili kamili asubuhi (08:00 am)

Saa tatu kamili asubuhi (09:00 am)

Saa nne kamili asubuhi (10:00 am)

Saa tano kamili asubuhi (11:00 am)

Saa sita kamili mchana (12:00 pm)

Saa saba kamili mchana (01:00 pm)

Saa nane kamili mchana (02:00 pm)

Saa tisa kamili arasiri (03:00 pm)

Saa kumi kamili jioni (04:00 pm)

Saa kumi na moja kamili jioni (05:00 pm)

Saa kumi na mbili kamili jioni (06:00 pm)

Saa moja kamili usiku (07:00 pm)

Saa mbili kamili usiku (08:00 pm)

Saa tatu kamili usiku (09:00 pm)

Saa nne kamili usiku (10:00 pm)

Saa tano kamili usiku (11:00 pm)

Saa sita kamili usiku (12:00 am)

Saa saba kamili usiku (01:00 am)

Saa nane kamili usiku (02:00 am)

Saa tisa kamili usiku (03:00 am)

Saa kumi kamili usiku (04:00 am)

Saa kumi na moja kamili alfajiri (05:00 am)

Saa kumi na mbili kamili asubuhi (06:00 am)

15 minutes = robo (quarter)  

30 minutes = nusu (half)

Saa moja na robo (07:15)

Saa mbili na robo (08:15)

Saa mbili kasorobo (quarter to eight)

Saa tatu kasorobo (quarter to nine)

Conversation 1

Paula: Mimi nitakuja kesho (I will come tomorrow)

John: Saa ngapi? (at what time?)

Paula: Saa mbili na nusu asubuhi.

John: Sawa.

Conversation 2

Bill: Sasa hivi ni saa ngapi?

Salome: Saa nne kasoro ishirini (09:40).

Bill: Shukrani (thanks).


Soma saa zifuatazo halafu onesha ni saa ngapi (what’s the time)

  1. 11:00      2. 02:45       3. 12:15            4. 03:30             5. 06: 50 


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