Korean: Permission to do... | ...아/어 도 되다


When expressing permission, you can often hear '... 도 돼', '... 도 돼요' in Korean. In today's article, we will introduce the usage of '도 되다', so that you can use the expression of permission in your daily life, and ask for permission in Korean.

If you are using Chrome or an Android phone, you can listen to the pronunciation by clicking on the Korean in the table or the Korean in the example sentences in the article!

Table of Contents

Table of Contents

When expressing permission, you can often hear "... 도 돼", "... 도 돼요" in Korean. In today's article, we will introduce the usage of "도 되다", so that you can use the expression of permission in your daily life, and ask for permission in Korean.

Permission to do... | ...아/어 도 되다

"되다" means to allow. For more detailed usage, see the article How to say 'permiss, ok, become' in korean? - 되다.

Then, to express "It's okay to be..." or "It's okay to do...", you can use "... 도 되다".
It is important to note that since the verb is followed by the preceding verb, there are grammatical variations depending on the preceding verb, and the rules are as follows.

요 type of verb + 도 되다

The 요 form of a verb is related to the vowel of the stem. For more details, please refer to Korean: About Verb 동사 + 아/어요, 해요.
So it can be further broken down into the following rules. If you have already mastered the variation of 요 type of verbs, you should be able to understand it quickly.

If the vowel of the verb stem is "ㅏ,ㅗ,ㅑ ", use "아 야 되다" or "아 야 하다".
If the vowel of the verb stem is not "ㅏ,ㅗ,ㅑ ", use "어 야 되다" or "어 야 하다".

You can also use the 요 form of the ** verb (아/어) + 도 돼** when speaking to someone close to you or a junior in an informal situation.

Extended reading.
Similar to Korean: Verb+야 되다/하다 | Should, Must, you can learn it together.

Let's look some examples.

verb아/어 도 되다
하다해도 되다
보다봐도 되다
가다가도 되다
알다알아도 되다
놀다놀아도 되다
마시다마셔도 되다
먹다먹어도 되다

Sentences

할 일 없으면, TV를 봐도 돼.

If you have nothing to do, you can watch TV.

여기에서 사진을 찍어도 돼.

You can take a picture here.

honorific expression

After understanding the above basic usage, let's talk about the expressions of honorific words.
Just replace "되다" with "돼요" or "됩니다 " and you have the expression for honorific.

Sentences

기차에서 도시락을 먹어도 돼요.

You can eat bento on the train.

여기서 담배를 피워도 됩니다.

You can smoke here.

When requesting permission

After introducing the expressions that allow others, how to express in korean when I ask for permission or ask for permission in turn?
It's as simple as switching to questions.

요 type of verb + 도 돼요?  
요 type of verb + 도 됩니까?  

Sentences

지금 전화해도 돼요?

Can I call now?

지금 집에 돌아가도 돼요?

Can I go home now?

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