Italian Language Tips: Lesson 4

What's New — By katiegreenaway on September 3, 2010 at 3:06 pm

One of my favorite moments in learning Italian was when I asked for some bus tickets without hesitation.  The clerk almost applauded me saying it was the best worded sentence he has heard all day.  I walked out with my head held high and it made me realize all the work I have been doing to improve my Italian was actually working.  When I asked for the bus tickets I was very confident and surely didn’t care what my accent sounded like.

“Posso avere un multi-plu, per favore?”

(Can I have a multi-plu ticket, please?)

Mercato Nuovo by Katie Greenaway

Today let’s focus on some key phrases you would use when you ask for something.

Posso avere…?(Can I have…?)–This is a very polite way to ask for anything.

Posso avere una birra?  Can I have a beer?
Posso avere una pizza?  Can I have a pizza?

A waiter trying to bring in another tourist

Vorrei una…. (I would like…)–A formal way to ask as well.

Scusa, puoi aiutarmi? (Excuse me, Can you help me?) –An informal way to ask.

Mi scusi, puo aiutarmi? (Excuse me, Can you help me?) –A formal way to ask.

Using the question word ‘Dove’ (Where) is helpful when asking for things.  Where is the bathroom, where is the hotel, where is a good restaurant. These are all good questions that perhaps might cross your mind when walking along the cobblestones of Florence.


Dov’è il bagno? — Where is the bathroom?
Dove` un buon ristorante vicino?– Where is a good restaurant nearby?
Dove` una buona enoteca? –Where is a good wine bar?
Dove` posso trovare un mercato?– Where can I find a market?

Dove` posso trovare alcuni posti interessanti da vedere?–Where can I find some interesting sites to see?

Any other phrases that come to mind?  What phrases or questions escaped you when you visited Florence?

Let me know!