Dutch chat slang: 27 essential terms to know

The Dutch language is known for having tons of abbreviations.

Chatting via text message or WhatsApp in Dutch is absolutely no exception to this!

I have been living and working in the Netherlands for the last three years and a half years and chat daily in Dutch with colleagues and family members.

I’ve come across tons of chat and texting slang that the Dutch like to use. While there are probably hundreds of these terms, I tried to come up with a list of the ones I see and hear most often.

I spend 99% of my time in North Holland, Utrecht, and Gelderland — so do keep in mind that the language that I hear every day may be unique to these provinces!

Here are 27 essential Dutch chat and texting slang terms and abbreviations (in alphabetical order) and their meanings so you can quickly decode those messages from your Dutch neighbour, colleague, friend, enz! 😉

1. aso

This is a shortened version of the Dutch word “asociaal”.

When you translate this word you typically get “anti-social” in English, however the way that people around me use this word, I find “rude” to usually be a better translation.

It refers to behaviour that demonstrate a lack of consideration or respect for others in social situations.

This is not only for using in chat, but seems to be also used in spoken Dutch as well. And not only can someone’s behaviour be described as “aso” — you can also refer to this person as an aso.

Example:
He gedroeg zich echt als een aso op het feest gisteravond
He really acted like a jerk at the party last night

2. das

This is a shortened way of saying “dat is” in Dutch, which means “that is” in English.

This is rather informal, so you would most likely only use it in chat, not for instance in a work e-mail.

Example:
Das leuk!
That is fun!

3. drm

This is a shortened way of saying “daarom” in Dutch, which can translate to:

  • Therefore
  • Hence
  • That is why

This short-form is used informally, so again I would only use it on WhatsApp or instant messaging a colleague at work, but not in an e-mail.

Example:
Mijn fiets is stuk, drm ben ik met de trein gekomen
My bike is broken, that’s why I came with train

4. enz

This is an abbreviation of the Dutch word “enzovoort” which translates to “and so forth” or “etcetera”.

This can be used both informally and in more formal situations like in an e-mail.

Example:
Ze hebben pizza, pasta, enz op het menu staan
They have pizza, pasta, etc. on the menu

5. ff

This is a shortened version of the Dutch word “effe” which in itself is slang or dialect for the word “even”.

“Even” is a frequently used word in Dutch that translates to “for a bit” or “for a while” but can also be added to a sentence not to indicate amount of time, but rather to make it friendlier.

In spoken Dutch you may sometimes notice that it is pronounced as “effe” instead of “even”. That is where this abbreviation is derived.

This is quite typical Dutch chat slang — otherwise never really used in written Dutch. The word “even” when written properly however can be used in any context.

Example (time):
Ik ben ff bezig, straks ben ik weer beschikbaar
I’m busy for a bit, but I’ll be available again soon

Example (friendliness):
Kun je mij ff helpen?
Can you please help me?

6. gvd

This could be interpreted two ways — as a short form of either “godverdomme” or “gadverdamme”.

“Godverdomme” is equivalent to saying “god damnit”. This can be quite offensive to some, so know your surroundings.

More often you will hear “gadverdamme” which is a softened version.

This is often used as a reaction to something gross or annoying. I explain this and a lot of other Dutch slang in the article 25 Dutch slang terms & how to use them to sound more Dutch!

This is very informal (and as I said, can be offensive to some). It should only ever be used in chat, never in written Dutch.

Example:
Gvd, wat goor!
Omg, nasty!

7. gwn

This is a shortened version of the Dutch word “gewoon” which in this case translates to the English adverb “just”.

Example:
Laten we gwn een film kijken vanavond
Let’s just watch a movie tonight

It is also sometimes used as a vague, non-committal response.

Example:
Wat heb je vandaag gedaan? Gwn. Wat rondgehangen…
What did you do today? Ah, you know. Hung around…

This short-form is used informally, so again I would only use it on WhatsApp or instant messaging a colleague at work, but not in an e-mail.

8. idd

This is a shortened version of the Dutch word “inderdaad” which in English means “indeed”.

Example:
Vond je het leuk? Ja idd! Het eten was lekker en de sfeer was ook geweldig.
Did you like it? Yes indeed! The food was tasty and the vibe was great too.

This short-form is used informally, and definitely in the top 5 of words on this list that are used most often by my co-workers. I would only use it on WhatsApp or instant messaging, but not in an e-mail.

9. IHVJ

This is an acronym for “ik hou van jou” in Dutch. This translates in English to “I love you”.

Example:
Fijne avond. Ihvj!
Good night. I love you!

10. iig

This is an acronym for “in ieder geval” in Dutch, which translates to “in any case”.

This is also in the top 5 of Dutch chat slang used most often by my peers. I would only use it on WhatsApp or instant messaging, but not in an e-mail.

Example:
Ik kom morgen langs, iig dat is het plan
I’ll come by tomorrow, that’s the plan in any case

11. IOVJ

This is an acronym for “ik ook van jou” in Dutch. This translates in English to “I love you too”.

Example:
IHVJ! IOVJ!
Love you! Love you too!

12. ipv

This is an acronym for “in plaats van” in Dutch which means “instead of” in English.

You can use this in chat, but usually not in an e-mail or otherwise in written Dutch.

Example:
Ik neem de trein ipv de bus want het is sneller
I’ll take the train instead of the bus because it’s faster

13. kweenie

This word is derived from the Dutch “ik weet het niet” which means “I don’t know” in English.

Unlike the other terms on this list, this can actually be used in spoken Dutch!

I assume that because it’s said so frequently, some people blur the words together and say “kweenie” to save time while speaking (similar to saying “I dunno” in English instead of “I don’t know”).

This is very informal texting slang and should only ever be used in chat, never in written Dutch (e.g. e-mail).

Example:
Is de supermarkt open op zondag? Kweenie
Is the supermarket open on Sunday? I don’t know

14. lama, lm, or lamaar

These are short forms for “laat maar” which translates to “never mind” in English.

These are all only used informally and should only ever be used in chat, not in e-mails.

Example:
Weet je waar mijn sleutels liggen? Lm ik heb ze gevonden
Do you know where my keys are? Never mind, I found them

15. m

This is an abbreviated way of saying “hem” in Dutch, which literally translates to “him” in English — though in practice it translates to “it”.

In English when we refer to something that was mentioned earlier, you use “it”.

In Dutch, instead of saying “het” (for “it”) you can use “hem”.

Example:
You found your hat! Yeah, I found it in my suitcase
Je hebt je pet gevonden! Ja, ik heb hem in mijn koffer gevonden

In speech this is often said like “em” without pronouncing the “h”, which is where this short-form comes from.

Example:
Waar is jouw fiets? Ik heb m in de garage gezet.
Where is your bike? I put it in the garage.

16. maja

This is an abbreviated way of saying “maar ja” in Dutch. This translates to “but yes” in English.

Example:
Het is duur maja ik wil hem echt hebben
It’s expensive but yeah, I really want it

17. miss

This is a shortened version of the Dutch word “misschien” which in English means “maybe”.

Example:
Kun je morgen afspreken? Miss kan ik dan wel
Can you meet tomorrow? Maybe I can

This short-form is used informally so I would only use it on WhatsApp or instant messaging, but not in an e-mail.

18. naja

This is an abbreviated way of saying “nou ja” in Dutch. This translates to “well, yes” in English.

This is said so often in speech that it has apparently become more efficient to blur the words together while speaking.

I couldn’t possibly describe this one better than this Instagram reel by @letsdoubledutch 😂. Thank me later!

19. oid

This is an acronym for “of iets dergelijks” in Dutch, which I would translate to “or something like that” or “or something similar” in English.

This can be used both informally and formally — so in my experience, this would be fine to use in an e-mail.

Example:
Je kan een lekker luchtje, mooie trui oid voor haar kopen
You can buy her a nice perfume, beautiful sweater, or something like that

20. svp

This actually isn’t Dutch at all, but rather an acronym for the French “s’il vous plaît” which means “please” in English.

This can be used both informally and formally — so in my experience, this would be fine to use in an e-mail.

Example:
Svp het formulier vandaag nog invullen
Please fill out the form today

21. sws

This is short form for the Dutch word “sowieso” which means “anyhow” or “anyway” in English.

I see this used very often in instant messaging but not typically in e-mail.

Example:
Ik kom sws naar het feest, ik zal er zijn
I’m coming to the party anyhow, I’ll be there

22. t

This is an abbreviated way of saying “het” in Dutch, which means “the” in English.

You may also see this written as: ’t

This construction really resembles the way “het” is often pronounced in spoken Dutch. Think for example how it sounds when someone asks, “hoe is het?”.

Example:
Heb je t boek al gelezen?
Have you already read the book?

23. tm

This is “t/m” or “tot en met”, but without the slash. In English, it means “up to and including”.

This is used in both informal and more formal situations, like e-mail for example.

Example:
Ik ben op vakantie van 1 juli tm 15 juli
I’m on vacation from July 1st up to and including July 15th

24. vd

This is short form for “van de” which usually means “of the” in English.

This is pretty informal and used

Example:
Heb je het telefoonnummer vd buurman?
Do you have the neighbour’s phone number?

25. wbj

This is an acronym for “wat bedoel je” which translates to “what do you mean” in English.

This is also quite informal and can be seen as chat slang only.

Example:
Wbj met die emoji?
What do you mean by that emoji?

26. wrm

This is a shortened version of “waarom” which means “why” in English.

Example:
Wrm duurde het zo lang?
Why did it take so long?

27. wss

This is a shortened version of “waarschijnlijk” which means “probably” in English.

Example:
Ga je morgen naar het concert? Ja, wss
Are you going to the concert tomorrow? Yeah, probably

I remember first seeing this being used and asked how “wss” became the short form of a word with only one “s”… But no one seemed to have a good answer (or realize this in the first place).

If you know why this is — please let me know in the comments!

I hope this article helped you master your Dutch chat and texting slang vocabulary, or maybe decipher a message that you couldn’t quite translate.

What terms have you seen in chat that are not on the list? Let me know in the comments!

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