I know what you're thinking: "They speak English in Jamaica. What good is a 'useful Jamaican phrases' guide?" But when talking amongst each other, most Jamaicans actually speak "patois" (defined as a regional dialect with significant differences from the regions official language.) Jamaican patois is a mix between English, African, and native languages.

"Welcome to Jamaica, mon! Hop in!"
Really means: "Hello, I see you are next in line for a cab from the airport. Please get into my Cadillac with the suspiciously bent-and-rusted cab license. Also, I'm going to try to sell you marijuana as soon as we get on the road."

"Things are more laid back in Negril."
Really means: "I'm so glad that you-and your money-are dumb enough to stay in trashy, trashy Montego Bay for your whole vacation! You should have done a lot more research before you got on that plane. I'd hate to see you leave, but if you'd like, I can arrange an expensive cab ride to Negril."

"You know it's illegal for Americans to go to Cuba, right?"
Really means: "I don't care what country you're from. I'm perfectly willing to sell you this overpriced plane ticket to Cuba, but it's going to cost you $10,000 if you're dumb enough to get your passport stamped or bring any Cuban money back and your government finds out you went."

"Hey, mon, you wanna go on a tour of a marijuana plantation and a real Jamaican village?"
Really means: "I'm not exactly a licensed tour guide, and I have no access to a marijuana plantation of any sort, but I'll take you to an extremely poor okra farm up in the mountains. Also, this will be 30 miles away from the city where there are no cops."

"Follow me, my cousin has a cab!"
Really means: "I'm going to pull over the next cab driver-licensed or unlicensed-that comes along, and bring you to a random location."

"Don't worry about money, mon!"
Really means: "We'll talk about the price later, when this spontaneous tour comes to its conclusion in a secluded jungle ravine and I demand $200 from you."

"Most Americans pay me $300 to experience this kind of authentic culture. I'm giving you a deal for $200 because I can see you're a good guy."
Really means: "Most Americans don't argue with me about the price of the 'tour' because they assume I have a gun (which I might.) So it'd be better for everybody if you just gave me the $200, okay?"

"Okay, fine, $80 and I'll handle the cab fare… just don't tell anybody about this, mon."
Really means: "My god, you're the absolute cheapest and most annoying American I've ever kidnapped, and I just want to get rid of you."

"Cheer up, mon, this is how we make our living. We are the street people, you understand?"
Really means: "You don't have to look so crabby about all of this. Nobody got shot and you haggled me down to $80 for a tour of a real Jamaican village (which actually was a really cool experience.) We're all winners here."

"Hey, mon! Would you look to check out my craft shop?"
Really means: "It's not so much a 'craft shop' as it is a hut filled with mass-produced touristy crap. Yeah, I do have a few paintings and carvings, but my mom made those and I don't really want to sell them; they're just here to add some authenticity to this place. And look, if you say 'no' I'm just going to keep begging you, so you might as well come with me. When you're done in my shop, I'm going to lead you next door to my friend/cousin/aunt's identical shop. After repeating this procedure four or five times, you're going to realize you're lost in a massive web of craft shops and their aggressive owners."

"Do you want to buy [item]?"
Really means: "I know you don't need [item], but you're an American (and therefore obviously rich.) To that end, I feel that you owe me-a native Jamaican-some form of monetary compensation for your enjoyment of my island. You should feel thankful that I'm even offering you [item] in return for your contribution."

"Make an offer."
Really means: "I already have a concrete price set, but I'm going to let you make an offer first, just in case you're as dumb as you look and you offer me way more money than I'd ever normally ask for this stupid Bob Marley shot glass."

"The Jamaican Dollar is the official currency of Jamaica."
Really means: "Please exchange your money so we can take a percentage, even though United States money is widely accepted throughout the island. In fact, even the smallest grocery stores will usually have a fair and efficient means of accepting and changing American money."

"It's clean."
Really means: "It's not that clean."

"It's safe."
Really means: "It's not that safe."

"It's quiet."
Really means: "A little too quiet."

"Excuse me, sir! Can I tell you a story?"
Really means: "I'm going to tell you a melodramatic anecdote about my troubled life, even though I look quite a bit healthier and more financially stable than a lot of the other Jamaicans you see out here. After I tell this story, I will demand that you tip me. If you argue about this tip, I'm going to accuse you of racism. Loudly."

"You smoke?"
Really means: "Do you smoke marijuana? More importantly, would you like to buy some marijuana from me?"

"You doin' all right?"
Really means: "Would you like to buy some marijuana from me?"

"What's up, mon?"
Really means: "Would you like to buy some marijuana from me?"

"You need anything, mon?" (Masculine)
Really means: "Would you like to buy some marijuana from me?"

"You need anything, mon?" (Feminine)
Really means either: "I am a self-employed sex worker; could I offer you any of my services?" or "Would you like to buy some marijuana from me?"

"You need a cab, mon?"
Really means: "Do you need help getting a cab? Or would you just like to buy some marijuana from me instead?"

"Where you stayin', mon?" [Pause for my reply.] "Oh, that's a… nice hotel."
Really means: "Wow, I can't believe some white kid from the States is actually staying there. You're either so cheap or so poor that I'm not even going to bother trying to sell you any drugs or hookers."

I hope this guide helps you make the most out of your time in Jamaica. And remember, when the cops or immigration officers tell you, "Marijuana is illegal in Jamaica," you don't need my help translating. Your best bet is to take that phrase word-for-word.