Italian Phrases To Know Before You Go

It’s always a good idea to learn at least a few phrases of the local language when you’re visiting a foreign country. Making an effort to speak someone’s language (even if it’s just a few words) usually goes a long way. It’s also a good idea for safety reasons if you find yourself in need of a doctor. Sometimes guidebooks can over do it with the list of words and phrases you “need” to know, so below I’ve included a summary of the phrases and words I was most likely to use when traveling through Italy and not knowing much of the language. I’d recommend trying to memorize some of the words, but creating a cheat sheet for yourself is also useful to glance at before you order dinner or to keep on hand in case of an emergency.

ITALIAN GREETINGS

  1. Ciao – Hello and Goodbye
  2. Buongiorno – Good morning
  3. Buona sera – Good evening
  4. Buona notte – Good night
  5. Arrivederci: A formal way to say goodbye

ITALIAN COURTESY

  1. Grazie – Thank you
  2. Per favore – Please
  3. Sì – Yes
  4. No – No
  5. Mi scusi – Excuse me
  6. Prego – You’re welcome
  7. Parla inglese? – Do you speak English?
  8. Mi dispiace – I’m sorry

TRANSPORTATION

  1. Metropolitana: Subway
  2. Treno: Train
  3. Macchina:  Car
  4. Autobus:  Bus
  5. Aeroporto: Airport
  6. Taxi: Taxi
  7. Buon viaggio: Have a nice trip

GETTING AROUND

  1. Ristorante – Restaurant
  2. Albergo – Hotel
  3. Banca – Bank
  4. Bancomatif – ATM
  5. Dov’è il bagno? – Where is the bathroom?
  6. Quanto costa? – How much does it cost?
  7. Posso collegarmi con internet? – Can I get on the internet
  8. Dov’è la stazione (or street name or tourist site)? – Where is the station?

PRACTICAL KNOWLEDGE

Numbers: Uno (1), due (2), tre (3), quattro (4), cinque (5), sei (6), sette (7), otto (8), nove (9), dieci (10)

Days of the week: lunedì (Monday), martedì (Tuesday), mercoledì (Wednesday), giovedì (Thursday), venerdì (Friday), sabato (Saturday), domenica (Sunday)

ORDERING FOOD AND DRINKS

  1. Buon appetito! – Enjoy your meal
  2. Un cappucccino, per favore – Cappuccino, please
  3. Un gelato  per favore – Gelato, please
  4. Ci porta il conto? – Check, please
  5. Piatto del giorno – Daily special
  6. Cosa mi consiglia – What do you recommend for me

EMERGENCY

  1. Aiuto! – Help!
  2. Chiamate la polizia! – Call the police!
  3. Chiamate un’ambulanza! – Call an ambulance!
  4. Ho bisogno di un medico – I need a doctor
  5. Dov’è l’ospedale? – Where is the hospital?

What other phrases would you like to know?

Happy Travels!

xo, Jenny

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