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Mabuhay is a Filipino greeting, usually expressed as Mabuhay!, in the imperative form of life, thus, Live!, from the root word buhay (life). Its real intentional meaning is “Long live!”


The phrase carries various meanings including "long live", "may you live", "cheers", "welcome", and "hurrah". It is thus analogous to Aloha, Talofa and Kia Ora in fellow Austronesian languages, Hawaiian, Samoan and Māori; the Romance language expression “Vive, Viva”, the Hindustani suffix Zindabad, and the Japanese exclamation Banzai.


The expression is mostly used for toasts during gatherings and parties, and is used as a cry of adulation towards individuals or concepts at rallies and political conferences. A more modern appropriation of the greeting is its use in the local hospitality industry to welcome guests—a practice rooted in a 1993 campaign launched by restaurateur Rod Ongpauco to more uniquely welcome foreign visitors to the Philippines.[1]

"Mabuhay" is also the name of the inflight magazine published by Philippine Airlines.


  • "Mabuhay ang Pilipinas! Mabuhay ang Repúblika!"
    ("Long live the Philippines! Long live the Republic!")
  • "Mabuhay ang Pangulo!"
    ("Long live the president!")
  • "Mabuhay ang bagong kasál!"
    ("Long live/cheers for the newlyweds!")

Cognates in other languages[edit]

A number of other Philippine languages have terms that are cognate with the term. The Bisayan languages, for example, use the term "Mabuhi" in a manner similar to "Mabuhay".


Alternatively, the Spanish equivalent Viva is used in almost exclusively religious contexts, specifically in shouts of praise directed at a patron saint or to God during fiestas and assemblies (e.g., "¡Viva Señor Santo Niño!")

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Luna, Luis (May 13, 1995). "Welcome Rotonda to have new name". Manila Standard. Kamahalan Publishing Corporation. Retrieved January 9, 2015. CS1 maint: discouraged parameter (link)