Learn 100+ Useful Italian Sentences and Phrases

You only need to learn a fraction of the total number of Italian sentences to be able to speak Italian fluently.

2019/03/03

Stefano Lodola

By Stefano Lodola

Why learn the most common Italian sentences and phrases first

Don’t feel overwhelmed only because there’s an infinite number of sentences in Italian. I have some good news: you only need to know a fraction of the total number of Italian sentences to be able to speak Italian fluently. For example, by knowing as little as 100 words you will understand 50% of any text in Italian. With little effort, you can have a real conversation with someone from Italy.

Have real conversations in Italian from day one

Once you start learning a few basic sentences in Italian you will have the knowledge to start your first Italian conversation. That’s why I put together sentences and phrases that simulate real-life conversations to get you speaking Italian in no time.

Feel how easy it is to learn the Italian language and become confident

Every language experience should start gradually, from the easiest to the more complex concepts. Learn Italian sentences, starting with the easiest and most common Italian phrases, you will feel confident in your ability to learn a new language.

Become fluent in Italian quicker

Starting with the basics, we quickly lay a foundation for you to learn more complex Italian phrases and sentences. We gradually build your Italian knowledge so you get fluent faster than you could imagine.

Become smarter by learning Italian

Learning a new language is a perfect way to boost your IQ. In no time, your brain will make new connections and associations and you’ll feel that learning Italian was one of the best choices you ever made.

Listen and repeat useful sentences and phrases in Italian

The best way to learn Italian is by speaking. Not just listening or reading. Right now, you should be speaking Italian with a native speaker, even if you’re just a beginner. If you don’t have the time, the money, or the courage, you can still practice speaking by yourself. How? With an audio course like “Ripeti con me!”.

With this Italian audio course, you’ll improve your Italian by listening and repeating many sentences. As you go through the course, small changes are made to the sentences, moving different components in and out. In this way, you’re learning new words and how sentences are formed. Grammar isn’t explicitly taught but you’ll begin to pick up the various grammar points on your own.

Check it out here!

100+ Essential Italian travel phrases and words

Everyone should learn essential Italian conversational words and phrases before traveling to Italy. These words and expressions are sure to come up in most everyday conversations.

Make sure to pack these phrases to help you prepare for those common situations travelers find themselves in. Learn Italian sentences that you actually need.

Italian greetings

The first thing you need to learn to do in any language is to meet and greet people!

After all, you’re going to be using greetings every time you have a conversation in Italian!

These phrases are simple, easy to remember and will go a long way to help you make friends and have your first conversations in the language.

  • Salve! – Hello (any time of day)
  • Buongiorno – Good morning/afternoon. It is always polite to say “Hi” every morning because Italian speakers are really sociable. “Good morning” in Italian is “Buongiorno”.
  • Buonasera – Good evening
  • Buonanotte – Goodnight
  • Grazie mille – Thank you very much
  • Arrivederci – Goodbye
  • Mi chiamo… – My name is _
  • Sono americano/canadese/inglese – I’m American/Canadian/English
  • Piacere – Nice to meet you

I don’t understand

You want to learn Italian sentences to communicate. However, as a beginner, there will be many moments when you get stuck and can’t understand what people are saying to you in Italian.

When this happens, don’t worry! It’s a perfectly normal part of the learning process and in time, you’ll begin to understand more and more of what you hear.

  • Mi scusi, non capisco – I don’t understand!
  • Non parlo italiano molto bene – I don’t speak Italian very well
  • Cosa vuole dire? – What does that mean?
  • Parla inglese? – Do you speak English?
  • Mi scusi – I’m sorry
  • Non lo so – I don’t know
  • Va bene – All right
  • Non importa – Never mind

At the restaurant

Dining is one of the best parts of traveling to Italy. However, reading an Italian menu can be intimidating!

Nevertheless, understanding how Italians dine will help you get the most out of your travel experience, especially in the many local, off-the-beaten-path establishments. So you should learn Italian sentences and phrases related to food and dining.

Here are some helpful hints on how to pick a restaurant in Italy and how to navigate its menu with confidence (and pay the bill too!). 

  • Un tavolo per uno / due, per favore – A table for one / two ,please
  • Siete già aperti? – Are you open yet?
  • Mi scusi! – Excuse me! (Calling a waiter)
  • Cosa mi consiglia? – What do you recommend?
  • Qual è la specialità della casa? – What’s your most popular dish?
  • Cos’è questo? – What’s this?
  • Faccia Lei! – It’s up to you/You can decide
  • Il conto, per favore – The cheque, please
  • Potrei avere il menu, per favore? – Can I have the menu, please?
  • Possiamo aspettare (per un tavolo)? – Can we wait (for a table)?
  • Possiamo sederci qui? – Can we sit here?

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Getting to places by train or bus in Italy

If you’re planning a trip to Italy, you’re probably going to need public transport to get around. These phrases will help you to buy tickets and find your destinations easily. They’re all Italian sentences and phrases that you should learn before going to Italy.

  • Quanto dura il viaggio? – How long does it take?
  • Dove devo andare adesso? – Where should I go now?
  • Quando parte? – When does it leave?
  • Che ore sono (adesso)? – What time is it (now)?
  • Vorrei andare a _ – I want to go to _
  • A che ora parte il prossimo treno/autobus per _ What time is the next train/bus to _ ?
  • Quanto costa? – How much is it?
  • Un biglietto / due biglietti (1 ticket / 2 tickets)
  • Questo treno/autobus ferma a _ – Does this train/bus stop in _?
  • Mi scusi, è qui _ – Excuse me, is this _? (On the bus/train, when you aren’t sure when to get off)

Shopping in Italy

Whether in the supermarket, the shopping center or the local farmer’s market you’re going to want to buy things at some point or another!

To do this, you need to be able to ask questions (or even haggle a bit!) just like you would in English! Here are the Italian sentences and phrases that you’ll need to learn:

  • Mi piace questo – I like this
  • Quanto costa questo? – How much is this?
  • È troppo caro per me – It’s too expensive for me
  • Sì, grazie – Yes, please
  • No, grazie – No, thanks
  • Può farmi uno sconto? – Can you do me a discount?
  • Cerco un/una _ – I’m looking for a _
  • Sto solo guardando – I’m just looking around
  • Un attimo – Just a moment

I don’t feel well

It’s always good to know some basic medical vocabulary so that can handle an emergency in case you get sick or suffer an accident. Learn these Italian sentences and phrases, just in case!

  • Mi porti in ospedale, per favore – Take me to the hospital please (To a taxi driver)
  • Mi fa male qui – It hurts here (pointing to body parts)
  • Ho bisogno di medicine – I need some medicine
  • Può aiutarmi, per favore? – Can you help me, please?
  • Devo andare da un medico – I need to see a doctor
  • Non mi sento bene – I don’t feel well
  • Non si sente bene – He/she doesn’t feel well
  • C’è un ospedale da queste parti? – Is there a hospital near here?

Asking for directions

What to do when you find yourself lost? Keep calm! Learn Italian sentences and phrases to ask for directions. By learning to say and understand the following phrases, you’ll be able to ask for and receive directions from the locals.

  • Vorrei andare a _ – I want to go to _ (If you know the name of your destination)
  • Vorrei andare qui – I want to go here (Pointing to your destination on the map)
  • Mi sono perso / Mi sono persa – I’m lost
  • È di qua? – Is it this way? (Useful for checking if you’re walking in the right direction)
  • Dov’è _? – Where is _ ?

Courteous phrases

Being polite is just as important in Italy as anywhere else in this world. Learn the following words and phrases to have a polite conversation.

  • Sì (yes)
  • No (no)
  • Per favore; per piacere; per cortesia (please)
  • Grazie (Thank you)
  • Molte grazie (Thank you very much.)
  • Prego! (You’re welcome!)
  • Si figuri! (It’s nothing.)
  • Mi scusi. (Excuse me.)
  • Prego (by all means)
  • Può ripetere, per cortesia? (Can you please repeat)

Personal pronouns

You refer to people by using personal pronouns. In Italian, the pronouns (you and they) are complicated by gender and formality.

  • Io (I)
  • Lui (he)
  • Lei (she)
  • Noi (we)
  • Tu (you, singular)
  • Lei (you, singular, formal)
  • Voi (you, plural)
  • Loro (they)

Use the informal tu (singular you) for friends, relatives, younger people, and people you know well. Use the formal lei (singular you) when speaking to people you don’t know well; in situations such as in stores, restaurants, hotels, or pharmacies); and with professors, older people, and your friends’ parents.

References to people

Know the correct vocabulary term for referring to people based on their age, gender, or relationship to you.

  • Uomo (a man)
  • Donna (a woman)
  • Ragazzo (a boy)
  • Ragazza (a girl)
  • Bambino (m); bambina (f) (a child)
  • Padre (a father)
  • Madre (a mother)
  • Figlio (m); figlia (f) (child)
  • Fratello (a brother)
  • Sorella (a sister)
  • Marito (a husband)
  • Moglie (a wife)
  • Amico (m); amica (f) (a friend)

The best way to learn Italian is by speaking

Learn Italian sentences and phrases for travelers

Here’s some Italian phrases that are particularly helpful to international travelers.

  • Mi scusi. (Excuse me. (Formal))
  • Non parlo bene l’italiano. (I don’t speak Italian well.)
  • Parla inglese? (Do you speak English? (Formal))
  • Parlo inglese. (I speak English.)
  • Non lo so. (I don’t know.)
  • Non posso. (I can’t.)
  • Non potevo. (I couldn’t.)
  • Non lo faccio. (I won’t do it.)
  • Non dimenticare! (Don’t forget!)
  • Mi sono perso. (M); Mi sono persa. (F) (I’m lost.)
  • Sto cercando il mio albergo. (I’m looking for my hotel.)
  • Sì, lo so. (Yes, I know.)
  • Non lo so. (I don’t know.)
  • Non so dove sia. (I don’t know where it is.)
  • Non capisco. (I don’t understand.)
  • Capisco, grazie. (I understand, thanks.)
  • Lei non mangia la carne. (She doesn’t eat meat.)
  • Non siamo americani. (We aren’t American.)
  • Il caffè non è buono. (The coffee isn’t good.)
  • Non è caro! (It’s not expensive!)
  • Può ripetere, per cortesia? (Can you repeat, please? (Formal))
  • È bello. (It’s beautiful.)
  • È bellissimo. (It’s very beautiful.)
  • Vado a casa. (I’m going home.)
  • Domani visitiamo Venezia. (We’ll visit Venice tomorrow.)
  • Due cappuccini, per favore. (Two cappuccinos, please.)

Common places and locations

Here’s some vocabulary for the common places or locations that you might need or want while traveling in Italy. You definitely need to learn these Italian sentences and phrases!

  • Dove? – where?
  • Dov’è il museo? – where is the museum?
  • Gira a destra – turn right
  • Gira a sinistra – turn left
  • Vai diritto – go straight ahead
  • Vai in quella direzione – go that way
  • Vai indietro – go back
  • Vicino – near
  • Lontano – far
  • Other places in italian:
  • Il teatro -theater
  • Il supermercato – supermarket
  • La stazione – train station
  • L’aeroporto – airport
  • L’ospedale – hospital
  • La stazione di polizia – police station
  • Il parco – park
  • Il centro – town center
  • Banca (bank)
  • Città (city)
  • La polizia (police)
  • La stazione (station)
  • Metropolitana (subway)
  • Museo (museum)
  • Il ristorante (restaurant)
  • In campagna (in the country)
  • In città (in the city)
  • In montagna (in the mountains)
  • L‘albergo (hotel)
  • L‘ospedale (hospital)
  • La casa (house)
  • Negozio (store)
  • Paese (country)
  • Spiaggia (beach)
  • Stato (state)
  • Ufficio (office)

Numbers

Whether you’re ordering drinks, paying a bill or buying a train ticket, numbers are something you’ll need to be familiar with in Italian right from the beginning. Learn how to count in Italian!

  • Uno – one
  • Due – two
  • Tre – three
  • Quattro – four
  • Cinque – five
  • Sei – six
  • Sette – seven
  • Otto – eight
  • Nove – nine
  • Dieci – ten
  • Undici – eleven
  • Dodici – twelve
  • Tredici – thirteen
  • Quattordici – fourteen
  • Quindici – fifteen
  • Sedici – sixteen
  • Diciassette – seventeen
  • Diciotto – eighteen
  • Diciannove – nineteen
  • Venti – twenty
  • Ventuno – twenty-one
  • Ventidue – twenty-two
  • Trenta – thirty
  • Quaranta – forty
  • Cinquanta – fifty
  • Sessanta – sixty
  • Settanta – seventy
  • Ottanta – eighty
  • Novanta – ninety
  • Cento – one hundred
  • Mille – one thousand
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As a language learner, I was raised speaking only Italian, but now I speak nine foreign languages.

As a teacher, I’ve taught Italian to adults in language schools and universities.

I’ve lectured in polyglot clubs and coached students on their way to fluency.

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Stefano Lodola

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