Meaning and Name Origin
Kai \kai\ as a boys' name (also used less commonly as girls' name Kai) is pronounced kye. It is of Welsh, Scandinavian and Greek origin, and the meaning of Kai is "keeper of the keys; earth". Variant of Kay. Also possibly (South African) "beautiful". Kai is also a Hawaiian name meaning "the sea".
For more information, see also the related boy name Cai.
Kai is a rare first name for males but a very popular last name for both adults and children (#25480 out of 88799, Top 29%). (2000 U.S. Census)
Shown below is the baby name popularity of Kai for boys. Kai was first listed in 1980-1989 and reached its peak rank of #177 in the U.S. in 2014. (2014 Birth Statistics)
Below is a graphed comparison of the popularity of the boy name Kai and affiliated names. The only other popular alternative form of Kai (#177 the previous year) listed in the Top 1000 is Kay. These boy names are at the apex of their popularity today, except for the form Kay which has become less fashionable. Kai (#177) is the most fashionable birth name in this list. (2014 Birth Statistics)
Kai▲ is alike in pronunciation to Caio, Caw, Kauai, Kawai, Kaye, Key and Koa. Other recommended similar baby names are Dai, Hai, Jai, KC, Kail, Kain, Kam, Kari, Kasi, Kaz and Rai. These names tend to be more commonly used than Kai.