7 German Phrases You’ll Want to Know

March 28, 2016
germany, germany culture
7 German Phrases You'll Want to Know

During my stay in amazing Germany, I realized that it has far more to offer than just beer fests and bratwurst. My fondest memories are of the people I met in Germany. I remember desperately trying to learn German before my big move, but then being amazed by how many Germans spoke English fluently. Nevertheless, there are still a few German phrases that are worth learning before your next trip.

Guten tag!

Good Day!

The friendly greeting is sure to put a smile on any Germna’s face. Different regions of Germany have their own greetings. For example, where I lived in Bavaria, we’d say Grüß Gott which translates to god greet (you). But guten tag is universal. If you’re looking for a more casual greeting, hallo (hello) works just as well.

Wie geht’s?

How goes it?

Pronounced ve gates. In my German lessons, I was taught the phrase wir geht es dir? Which means, how are you? Geht’s is a shortened form of geht es, which directly translates to how goes it? Unless you’re in a formal setting, wie geht’s is usually the more popular term.

Prost!

Cheers!

Arguably one of the most important phrases you’ll use on your trip to Deutschland. For good reason too! Germany is well known for its fantastic beer. So grab a weiss bier or a dunkel, find a spot on a fest bench, and prost!

Vielen dank!

Many thanks!

Vielen dank is a formal way of saying you’re very thankful. But if a waitress brings you a beer, for example, a simple danke schön, pronounced don-keh schun, will do.

Entschuldigen

Pardon.

Pronounced end-shul-de-gehn. Whether you’re trying to maneuver through a crowd, apologize, or get someone’s attention, entschuldigen is an important word to know. It’s especially handy if you’re a former New York City resident with a need for speed.

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Gutten appetit

Good appetite.

A common phrase used before eating. Although there’s no similar phrase in English, the best comparison is the French bon appetit. Before you dig into your plate of pork knuckle, kartoffel salat, and sauerkraut, be sure to wish the table gutten appetit.

German phrases

Tschüss

Bye.

Pronounced tchoose. The more familiar term for goodbye is auf wiedersehen, but unless you’re a VonTrapp saying goodnight, most people stick to the casual tschüss.

Wunderbar!

Wonderful!

Pronounced vunderbah. Without a doubt, my favorite Deutsch word. I would, however, advise against using it in a sarcastic manner to the polizai officer who’s writing you a ticket for parking your car in the street on a Sunday. He’ll conveniently find something else you did wrong and give you another ticket…wunderbar.

7 German Phrases You’ll Want to Know

Tips for Women Travelers in Germany 7 German Phrases You'll Want to Know

7 German Phrases You’ll Want to Know

About Merissa Principe

Merissa PrincipeMerissa Principe is an actress and freelance travel blogger from NY. Pursuing a CDA in early child development through the US Army has provided the opportunity for Merissa to live in new places and travel. Whether in NY or Europe she always finds time to make home cooked meals, crochet and write a blog post or two.

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