Most Thai learners probably know what “จะ” [jà] means. It means “will.” At least, most of the time it does get translated as “will,” a modal verb expressing future tense. But what you may not know is that, in spoken Thai, we also use “จะ” [jà] to say “almost,” or to express that something is going to happen in the near future or about to happen, instead of the words “เกือบ [geùab]” or “ใกล้ [glâi].” When “จะ” [jà] is used in this sense, it’s always used with the word “แล้ว” [léaw] meaning “already.”

Take a look at these example sentences below. Note that if you replace “จะ” [jà] in these sentences with “เกือบ [geùab]” or “ใกล้ [glâi],” they will still make sense and have the same meaning. Another thing worth noticing is that although “จะ” [jà] is pronounced with a low tone, in practice, when used in a sentence, we tend to pronounce it with a mid tone as [ja] instead of a low tone. It’s a more realistic way Thai people pronounce the word when they speak. If you notice, more often than not this word is transliterated as “ja” instead “jà” on our website because we want to teach you how we really speak.


1. รอแป๊ปนึง จะถึงแล้ว
[raw páp neung, ja teǔng léaw]
Just wait a little bit. I’m almost there.
You can also say: เกือบถึงแล้ว [geùab teǔng léaw] or ใกล้ถึงแล้ว [glâi teǔng léaw]

2. วิ่งเร็ว รถไฟจะออกแล้ว
[wîng reo, rót fai ja àwk léaw]
Run! The train is leaving.
You can also say: รถไฟใกล้ออกแล้ว [rót fai glâi àwk léaw]
*Here, if you use “เกือบ [geùab],” the sentence would mean “the train almost left (but didn’t).”

3. เหลือเวลาเยอะที่ไหน นี่จะสามโมงแล้วนะ
[leǔa welaa yér tîi nǎi, nîi ja sǎam mong léaw ná]
What do you mean we have a lot of time left? It’s almost 3PM!
You can also say: เกือบสามโมงแล้ว [geùab sǎam mong léaw] or ใกล้สามโมงแล้ว [glâi sǎam mong léaw]

4. รีบกลับบ้านกันเถอะ ฟ้าจะมืดแล้ว
[rîip glàb bâan gan tèr, fáa ja mêut léaw]
Let’s head home now. It’s getting dark.
You can also say: ฟ้าใกล้มืดแล้ว [fáa glâi mêut léaw]

5. ขนมปังนี้จะหมดอายุแล้ว เอาไปแช่ตู้เย็นดีกว่า
[kanǒm pang níi ja mòt aayú léaw, ao pai châe tûu yen dii gwàa]
The bread is going bad soon. I’m putting it in the fridge.
You can also say: ใกล้หมดอายุแล้ว [glâi mòt aayú léaw] or เกือบหมดอายุแล้ว [geùab mòt aayú léaw]

6. เขาอายุจะยี่สิบแล้ว ให้เขาตัดสินใจเองเถอะ
[káo aayú ja yîi sìp léaw, hâi káo tàt sǐn jai eeng tèr]
She’s almost 20. Let her make her own decision.
You can also say: อายุเกือบยี่สิบแล้ว [aayú geùab yîi sìp léaw]

7. ผมกินจะเสร็จแล้ว เดี๋ยวโทรหา
[phǒm gin ja sèt léaw, dǐao tow hǎa]
I’m almost done eating. I’ll call you soon.
You can also say: กินเกือบเสร็จแล้ว [gin geùab sèt léaw] or กินใกล้เสร็จแล้ว [gin glâi sèt léaw]

8. ร้านจะปิดแล้ว จะซื้ออะไรก็รีบหยิบ
[ráan ja pìt léaw, ja séu arai gâw rîip yìp]
The store is closing. Hurry, go grab what you want to buy.
You can also say: ร้านใกล้ปิดแล้ว [ráan glâi pìt léaw]
*Here, if you use “เกือบ [geùab],” the sentence would mean “the store almost closed (but didn’t).”

9. ผมจะสมัครที่นี่แล้ว แต่ได้งานที่อื่นเสียก่อน
[phǒm ja samàk tîi nii léaw, tâe dâai ngaan tîi èun sǐa gàwn]
I almost applied for work here but I got a job offer elsewhere first.
You can also say: เกือบสมัครที่นี่แล้ว [geùab samàk tîi nii léaw]
*Here, if you use “ใกล้ [glâi],” the sentence would mean “I’m applying for work here soon.”

10. ฉันดูหนังด้วยไม่ไหวอ่ะ ง่วงมาก จะหลับแล้ว
[chán duu nǎng dûai mâi wǎi à, ngûang mâak, ja làp léaw]
I can’t stand watching a movie with you. I’m so tired. I’m already falling asleep.
You can also say: ใกล้หลับแล้ว [glâi làp léaw]

11. ร้านนี้ดูเหมือนจะเจ๊งแล้วเลย มีของขายน้อยมาก
[ráan níi duu meǔan ja jéng léaw loei, mii kǎwng kǎai nói mâak]
It looks like this store is going out of business. There’s almost nothing here.
You can also say: ดูเหมือนใกล้เจ๊งแล้ว [duu meǔan glâi jéng léaw]

12. ลูกคุณเก่งจัง เพิ่งจะสิบเดือนเอง จะเดินได้แล้ว
[lûuk khun gèng jang, pêung ja sìp deuan eeng, ja dern dâai léaw]
Your baby is amazing. He’s only 10 months and almost walking!
You can also say: เกือบเดินได้แล้ว [geùab dern dâai léaw] or ใกล้เดินได้แล้ว [glâi dern dâai léaw]

13. จะวันเกิดแฟนแล้ว ยังไม่ได้หาซื้อของให้เขาเลย
[ja wan gèrd fan léaw, yang mâi dâai hǎa séu kǎwng hâi káo loei]

My girlfriend’s birthday is coming. I haven’t started looking for a present for her yet.
You can also say: ใกล้วันเกิดแฟนแล้ว [glâi wan gèrd fan léaw]

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