What you say: “I love chai tea!”
What I hear: “I love tea tea!”
That’s because chai means tea in Hindi (cha/chai derivatives mean tea in Portuguese, Greek, Czech, and other languages). Tea/chai originated in China and spread around the world with two different names: chai and tea. These names are derivatives of what the Chinese called our beloved hot drink: te and ch. Traders going to Europe stuck with the te derivation (which became tea) and traders going to India, Russia, Persia, etc) called it chai (derived from ch).
+Plus: The term “chai tea” is used mainly as a marketing strategy and to get people accustomed to the fact that chai is a different way of making tea (milky, spicy tea). Chai and tea really mean the same thing.