ItalianPod101.com Blog
Learn Italian with Free Daily
Audio and Video Lessons!
Start Your Free Trial 6 FREE Features

Archive for the 'Speak Italian' Category

How to Say “I’m Sorry” in Italian

Thumbnail

Learning how to say “I’m sorry” in a foreign language is a crucial step in assimilating not only its grammar and vocabulary, but also its culture. This is why we at ItalianPod101 have decided to write an extensive guide about how to say sorry in Italian.

Reading this article, you’ll discover how to say “I’m sorry” in Italian with your words and with your body language. Moreover, you’ll find out how to say sorry in Italian in different circumstances and to different people.

Everyone makes mistakes from time to time. Don’t let them devastate your relationships with your Italian friends, relatives, colleagues, or other special people in your life. Learn how to say “I apologize” in Italian in the most effective way and take care of your relationships. Start with a bonus, and download your FREE cheat sheet - How to Improve Your Italian Skills! (Logged-In Member Only)

  1. “Sorry”: A Complicated Word
  2. The Meaning of “I’m Sorry” in Italian
  3. How to Say Sorry in Italian
  4. How to Say “Excuse Me” and “Pardon” in the Street

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Italian


1. “Sorry”: A Complicated Word

3 Ways To Say Sorry

As explained by the Harvard Business Review, “I’m sorry” is an expression that’s very complicated to translate. This is because it involves the cultural meaning of apology, culpability, and mistake, which greatly varies from culture to culture.

For example, in the Western world in general, an apology implies an admission of culpability. What “I’m sorry” really means is “I’ve made a mistake, therefore I’m sorry.” On the other hand, in Japan an apology doesn’t mean that one admits he’s in the wrong, and it’s instead a way to repair a problem within a relationship. So it’s more like “I’m sorry that there’s this problem between us. Please, let’s fix it.”

It’s such a complicated matter, that the Journal of Applied Social Psychology has defined “sorry” as the hardest word. In order to clarify this extremely intricate subject, we could use the classifications of dignity, face, and honor cultures as defined by social studies:

  • Dignity cultures are individualistic, and the self-worth of every individual is based on his/her achievements, not on the others’ opinion. The U.S. is considered a dignity culture.
  • Face cultures are more based on hierarchy, and the value of individuals is assessed on their ability to do what’s expected of them according to their social position. China and Japan are considered face cultures.
  • Honor cultures are strongly based on reputation and each one’s ability to defend it from attacks, for example in the Middle East.

The meaning and effectiveness of an apology varies amongst the different cultures. For example, they tend to be less effective in honor cultures and more effective in dignity cultures.

Then, what about Italy? Like many others in the world, the Italian culture is a mix. We can define it as a mix of dignity and honor cultures. An individualistic society with strong familial ties, where honor still has some relevance.

Three Generations of Hands Overlapping


2. The Meaning of “I’m Sorry” in Italian

As in other Western cultures, “I am sorry” in Italian involves an admission of culpability. You’re supposed to apologize in mainly three circumstances:

  • When you’ve done something wrong, even if you haven’t done it on purpose.
  • When you’re disturbing someone or something.
  • When you’re lacking something.

Let’s see this in more in detail.

1- A Few Examples of Things that are Considered Wrong in Italy

You’re supposed to say sorry in Italian when you’ve done something that Italians consider wrong. The concept of wrong and right is another element that greatly varies from culture to culture, so let us give you some examples of what’s wrong according to Italians:

  • When you forget an appointment or a birthday.
  • When you offend someone, even if it’s not on purpose.
  • When you make a mistake while working.
  • When you’re late—but mind that many Italians have a very flexible idea of punctuality, and if they arrive fifteen minutes late, they might not see the need to apologize.
  • When you can’t quite finish your second dish of pasta. :-)

Remember that you shouldn’t apologize if you don’t think you’re in the wrong. Apologizing just to make things okay, without being ready to admit your fault, would look false and deceiving.

Little Boy Apologizing to His Grandfather

2- When You Should Apologize for Disturbing

You should apologize:

  • When you’re interrupting someone speaking.
  • When you need someone to move in order to pass through.
  • When you enter a room during a meeting or a private discussion.
  • When you need to have someone’s attention while he’s/she’s doing something (for example, when in a restaurant you need to ask the waiter something while he’s/she’s carrying another table’s dishes).

3- When You Should Apologize for Lacking Something

Here are a few examples of this particular situation. You are supposed to apologize:

  • When you invite someone to your home and you’re out of coffee, wine, or anything else a guest wants.
  • When someone talks to you in a language you don’t speak.
  • When you don’t know something you should know.


3. How to Say Sorry in Italian

Say Sorry

Now that you know the cultural meaning and circumstances of apologizing in Italy, let’s look at how to say “I’m sorry,” in Italian with these Italian sorry phrases.

1- A Dictionary to Say Sorry in Italian

So, how do you say sorry in Italian? It depends on the situation, but by far the most common Italian sorry phrases are:

  • Scusa: This word basically means “I’m sorry,” but also “I apologize,” “excuse me,” and “pardon.” It should be used with one singular person you’re addressing with the second singular person tu and not the formal third singular person lei (this is because you’ll be talking to a friend, a relative, or a partner, and not someone superior to you).

Examples of use:
- Sarò venti minuti in ritardo, scusa.
- Scusa per la fretta, ma ho poco tempo.

Translation:
- “I’ll be twenty minutes late, sorry.”
- “I’m sorry for the rush, but I have little time.”

  • Scusate: This is the same as the above word, but should be used when apologizing to more than one person.

Example of use:
- Scusate, ho dimenticato che dovevamo vederci tutti in pizzeria stasera.

Translation:
- “Sorry, I forgot that we were all supposed to meet at the pizzeria tonight.”

  • Mi scusi: Wondering how to say “sorry to bother you” in Italian to a superior? Mi scusi is a good option. This is the same thing as the above phrase, but it’s used when addressing someone with the formal third singular person lei, such as an older person you don’t know very well, a client, or a professor.

Examples of use:
- Mi scusi, vorrei avere delle informazioni sui vostri corsi di italiano.
- Mi scusi, non parlo italiano.

Translation:
- “Excuse me, I’d like to have more information about your Italian courses.”
- “Sorry, I don’t speak Italian.”

  • Scusami / mi scuso: This is like scusa, but with a more emphatic nuance.

Examples of use:
- Scusami, mi sono davvero comportato male ieri sera.
- Sono stato molto scortese, mi scuso.

Translation:
- “I’m sorry, I behaved very badly last night.”
- “I’ve been very rude, I’m sorry.”

  • Scusatemi: This is like scusami, but is used when addressing more than one person.

Example of use:
- A causa del mio errore abbiamo perso un cliente, scusatemi.

Translation:
- “Because of my mistake we lost a client, I’m sorry.”

  • Mi dispiace: This is another expression that means “I’m sorry,” but is used in more serious circumstances (or when used after it, there’s a subordinate clause).

Examples of use:
- Non sapevo della tua perdita, mi dispiace.
- Mi dispiace che tu non possa venire a Roma con noi.

Translation:
- “I didn’t know about your loss, I’m sorry.”
- “I’m sorry that you won’t be able to come to Rome with us.”

  • Perdonami: This is a word meaning “forgive me,” used when talking to one singular person that you’re addressing with the second singular person tu.

Example of use:
- Perdonami per averti fatto soffrire.

Translation:
- “Forgive me for making you suffer.”

  • Perdonatemi: This is the same as the above word, but should be used with more than one person.

Example of use:
- Perdonatemi per tutti i problemi che ho causato con la mia disattenzione.

Translation:
- “Forgive me for all the problems I’ve caused with my inattention.”

  • Ti prego di scusarmi / Ti prego di perdonarmi: These phrases mean “Please, forgive me,” and is a stronger request for forgiveness.

Examples of use:
- Sono stato davvero sciocco a dire quelle cose, ti prego di scusarmi.
- Ti prego di perdonarmi per la mia arroganza.

Translation:
- “I was really silly to say those things, please, forgive me.”
- “Please, forgive me for my arrogance.”

  • La prego di scusarmi / La prego di perdonarmi: This is the same as the above phrases, when talking to someone with lei.

Example of use:
- La prego di scusarmi per l’inefficienza.

Translation:
- “Please, forgive me for the inefficiency.”

  • Vi prego di scusarmi / Vi prego di perdonarmi: This is the same thing again, when talking to more than one person. If you’re wondering how to say “I’m really sorry,” in Italian (or “I’m very sorry,” in Italian), this is a good option.

Example of use:
- Ho commesso un grave errore, vi prego di perdonarmi.

Translation:
- “I’ve made a big mistake, please, forgive me.”

Woman Asking For Man's Forgiveness

2- How to Say Sorry in Italian to a Friend, Relative, or Someone Special to You

In order to say sorry in Italian to a friend, a relative, or a special person in your life, you’ll use the more familiar expressions, as when talking to someone with the tu person.

Examples:

  1. Scusami per aver perso la tua festa ieri sera.
  2. Ti chiedo scusa per non essere stato presente quando avevi bisogno di me.
  3. Non sono stato un buon amico, perdonami.
  4. Scusa zia, le tue tagliatelle sono buonissime, ma sono pienissimo!
  5. Scusate, ho dimenticato di portare il vino.

Translation:

  1. “I’m sorry for missing your party last night.”
  2. “I’m sorry for not being there for you when you needed me.”
  3. “I wasn’t a good friend, forgive me.”
  4. “I’m sorry, aunt, your tagliatelle are excellent, but I’m super full!”
  5. “Sorry, I forgot to bring the wine.”

3- How to Say Sorry in Italian in Formal Situations

In a formal situation—like when talking to a client, a superior, a business contact, or simply an older person you don’t know well—you have to use the lei person.

Examples:

  1. Mi scusi, non ho capito cosa ha detto.
  2. La prego di perdonarci per il disguido.
  3. Mi perdoni per essere stato indelicato.

Translation:

  1. “I’m sorry, I didn’t understand what you said.”
  2. “Please, forgive us for the misunderstanding.”
  3. “Please, forgive me for being indiscreet.”

Saying Sorry

4- How to Say “Excuse Me” and “Pardon” in the Street

After talking about Italian for “sorry,” what about saying “excuse me” or “pardon” in a crowd, on a bus, or wherever you need to pass? It’s very easy: you just say scusa to boys and girls, and mi scusi to older persons.

Examples:

  1. Scusi, posso passare?
  2. Scusa, dovrei scendere alla prossima fermata.

Translation:

  1. “Excuse me, could I pass?”
  2. “Pardon, I should get off at the next stop.”

5- How to Say Sorry in Italian with Your Body Language

In many cultures, for example in Japan, body language is an essential part of an apology. When you want to say that you’re so sorry in Italian, the expression on your face is the most important body language element. Italians are more expressive than other peoples, and an apology always comes—pardon the pun—with a “sorry” face.

Sometimes an apology can come with gestures; a hand to the heart is the most common, as a sign of pain and regret.


4. Keep on Learning the Italian Culture and Language with ItalianPod101!

We hope you learned some useful Italian sorry phrases in this article, and that you’ll start practicing them!

With ItalianPod101.com, you’ll learn so much more than grammar rules and vocabulary. You’ll discover how to behave in Italy, how Italians communicate through body language, and how to understand their culture and habits. You’ll be able to blend in with your Italian friends, relatives, and colleagues, and can fully enjoy your holiday in Italy.

Learn Italian with our innovative tools, tailor-made on your level and perfect for any device. Discuss what you discover and share your thoughts on our forum with the other members of our community!

Until next time, we’re wishing you the best as you continue learning Italian!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Beginner Vocabulary in Italian

How to Find a Job in Italy: Work in Italy in No Time

Italy is best known as a holiday destination. With its 7.500 kilometres of coast (much of which consists of beaches), majestic mountains, amazing cities, and stunning countryside, it’s by definition a place to spend some time doing nothing but enjoying it all. And let’s not start talking about the food and wine!

Well, for some people all of these are also good reasons to move to Italy and start a new life there. Especially if they also have an Italian significant other. But how can you work in Italy as a foreigner? Where should you start looking for a job?

Here on ItalianPod101, we’ll explain how to move to Italy and get a job. So, if you’re planning to start your own Dolce Vita, just keep on reading to learn about finding jobs in Italy.

Start with a bonus, and download the Business Words & Phrases PDF for FREE! (Logged-In Member Only)

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Business Words and Phrases in Italian

Table of Contents

  1. What Do I Need to Work in Italy?
  2. What You Should Know Before Starting to Work in Italy
  3. What are the Most Sought-after Jobs in Italy?
  4. Where Can I Find the Best Job Opportunities?
  5. How to Look for a Job in Italy
  6. Some More Advice
  7. ItalianPod101: Learn with Us and Build Your New Life in Italy!

1. What Do I Need to Work in Italy?

In order to work in Italy as a foreigner, you must act according to the Italian immigration laws, which vary depending on your nationality:

  • EU citizens: EU citizens have very few requirements in order to find a job in Italy and start their life there.
  • Non-EU citizens: For non-EU citizens, things are harder, since they need a work permit.

In both cases, since many Italians, especially the older ones, don’t speak English or any other language except their own (and maybe a dialect), it’s better for you to learn Italian, at least to an intermediate level, before starting to look for a job there. Highly specialized jobs in a few scientific and engineering fields may be an exception, as English might be accepted as a language in the workplace.

1- How to Work in Italy as a EU Citizen

Holding a Red Pen

All EU citizens have the right to free movement within all the EU countries, which are: Belgium, Bulgaria, Croatia, Cyprus, Denmark, Germany, Estonia, Finland, France, Greece, United Kingdom, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Latvia, Lithuania, Luxembourg, Malta, The Netherlands, Austria, Poland, Portugal, Romania, Slovenia, Slovakia, Spain, Czech Republic, Sweden.

This means that EU citizens have the right to move and to work in Italy without a special permit. Though they still need to deal with a bit of bureaucracy. In order to be hired in Italy, they need:

  • A valid ID document (passport or identity card).
  • A codice fiscale (“fiscal code”), which is a unique identifier based on full name, place of birth, and birthday. It’s used for a great number of things, from submitting a residency request to getting a library card. Requesting this codice fiscale is pretty simple, especially compared to any other bureaucratic operation in Italy and—good news!—it’s also completely free.

You just have to go to your local Agenzia delle Entrate and issue a request. You’ll immediately receive your code. There are even sites where you can calculate your fiscal code in advance, in case you’re curious.

EU citizens have the right to free movement, as we said, but they still need to apply for residency in Italy if they plan to live in the country for more than three months.

2- How to Work in Italy as a Non-EU Citizen

Things get harsher for non-EU citizens. This said, working in Italy as an American is a lot easier than working there as a person from Asia or Africa, due to the different ways non-EU immigrants are generally treated, according to their nationality.

Anyway, this is what they all need:

  • Visa: A Visa is issued for a specific purpose and therefore there are different kinds—tourist visa, student visa, employment visa, and so on. It has an expiry date and it establishes for how long you’ll be allowed to stay in the country. If you have a visa for the Schengen area, you don’t need another one to enter Italy.
  • Residence permit (permesso di soggiorno): Within eight days of entering Italy, you must apply for a residence permit, which is the most important document for a non-EU citizen in Italy. The permit will reflect your visa (so you’ll receive a student permit if you have a student visa, an employment permit if you have an employment visa, and so on) and must be requested to the local Police Headquarters (Questura).

Depending on the kind of permit you need, you have to make a request at the post office or directly at the Questura. Since the matter is complicated, we advise you to seek out more information at a local union office or association. The times for the release of the residence permit can vary greatly, from a few weeks to several months. In the meantime, you must keep the receipt they give you.

2. What You Should Know Before Starting to Work in Italy

Italy’s one of the most developed countries in the world. However, it’s facing a hard economic crisis that’s still far from being resolved. This means that it has a less-vital job market in comparison to other EU countries and a higher unemployment rate (which is 9.7% as of summer 2018). Moreover, undeclared employment is pretty common, regarding at least 3.3-million workers in Italy.

The Italian laws grant equal rights for every person in the job market. There are many different kinds of contracts that an employer can offer you. These are the most used:

  • Permanent contract (contratto a tempo indeterminato): A contract without an expiry date. It can be part-time or full-time.
  • Fixed-term contract (contratto a tempo determinato): A contract with an expiry date, after which it can be renewed or not, according to the employer’s and the employee’s will. It can be part-time or full-time.
  • Interim supply contract (contratto di somministrazione): A contract made between the worker and an agency (agenzia interinale) supplying workers to companies for a short period of time.
  • On-call contract (contratto a chiamata): A contract without a fixed number of hours. The employer can request the employee to work according to the company needs with short notice.
  • Apprenticeship contract (contratto di apprendistato): If you’re younger than 29 years old, you can be hired as an apprentice to learn a job. This kind of contract usually lasts between six months and three years.

3. What are the Most Sought-after Jobs in Italy?

Is it hard to find a job in Italy?

If you have highly valued skills and a good knowledge of Italian and English, you probably won’t have any issue finding a job in Italy.

For example, it’s pretty easy to find marketing jobs in Italy if you have experience in this field. It’s the same for engineering, IT, management, and so on. You’ll also find good opportunities if you’re a qualified factory worker. For example, there are many jobs in Modena, Italy if you have skills and experience that can be useful in the mechanic industry.

Jobs in Italy for English speakers include language teachers, interpreters, or jobs in the tourism industry. There can also be good jobs for Americans in Italy in companies working with American clients or seeking to expand in the USA.

4. Where Can I Find the Best Job Opportunities?

There is a strong wealth gap between Northern and Southern Italy. So, if you’re willing to work in industry, marketing, fashion, IT, technology, and so on, you’ll probably have better chances of finding good jobs in Milan, and in the North in general. You can also happen to find IT jobs in Rome, Italy, but the real economic capital of the country is Milan.

Jobs in Rome are mostly in the tourism field, or in anything related to university and the public administration. It’s pretty much the same for jobs in Florence, Italy, except for the fact that in Tuscany there is also a strong and lively textile industry. Jobs in Calabria, Italy or in basically any other Southern region are harder to find.

That said, what’s the best way to find jobs in Italy?

5. How to Look for a Job in Italy

There are many ways to look for a job in Italy:

  • Sites: Indeed Italia, LinkedIn, Infojobs, Trovalavoro, and others can be useful for finding job offers.
  • Agencies: The aforementioned agenzie interinali (“supply agencies”) can be a good way to find temporary jobs, especially in fields such as manufacturing, tourism, and food.
  • Centro per l’impiego: The public job center. It can help you have an idea of the opportunities in your city and province.
  • Relations: This is by far the best way to find a job in Italy. Try to meet new people working in your field, by going to expos, congresses, and so on.

6. Some More Advice

1- How to Work as a Language Teacher in Italy

Woman holding a chalk

Wondering how to find a job in Italy for English speakers? Being a language teacher is among the most common jobs in Italy for American citizens, or for people from the UK and Australia. As for how to find a job teaching English in Italy, you can start by introducing yourself to language schools and universities, or place some ads on message boards by universities and schools, or put yourself out there online.

2- How to Work as a Blue-collar in Italy

To work as a blue-collar, you’ll need to know the Italian grammar and written language. Moreover, it could take some time to get used to the Italian bureaucracy.

3- How to Work in the Healthcare Field in Italy

Blood Pressure Test

In order to work in the healthcare field in Italy, you must have a recognized degree or diploma, and know the Italian medical terms.

7. ItalianPod101: Learn with Us and Build Your New Life in Italy!

Start building the foundation of your new life in Italy with ItalianPod101.com! Learn the Italian language according to your current level and improve everyday, in a fun, engaging platform that will both teach and entertain you. Discuss with the other members of our community on our forum and learn everywhere you are with our amazing mobile apps! Finally, you can find out everything you need about working and living in Italy with our articles and guides!

Log in to Download Your Free Cheat Sheet - Business Words and Phrases in Italian

Language Learning Tips: How to Avoid Awkward Silences

Avoid Awkward Silences

Yes, even beginners can quickly learn conversational Italian well enough to carry on real conversations with native speakers. Of course, beginners won’t be able to carry a conversation the same way they could in their native language. But, just knowing a few tips like which questions to ask to keep a conversation going are all you need to speak and interact with real native speakers! But before we get to specific suggestions, let’s first take a closer look at how having real Italian conversations is so vital to your mastery of the language.

Learning to Carry a Conversation is Vital to Mastery of Any Language

Communicating with other people is the very point of language and conversation is almost second nature in our native tongue. For beginners or anyone learning a new language, conversations aren’t easy at all and even simple Italian greetings can be intimidating and awkward.

However, there are 3 vital reasons why you should learn conversational Italian as quickly as possible:

  • Avoid Awkward Silences: Nothing kills a conversation faster than long periods of awkward silence, so you need practice and specific strategies to avoid them.
  • Improve the Flow of Conversation to Make a Better Impression: When you know what to say to keep a conversation going, communication becomes much easier and you make a better impression on your listener.
  • Master the Language Faster: Nothing will help you learn to speak Italian faster and truly master the language than having real conversations with native speakers. Conversations quickly expose you to slang, cultural expressions, and vocabulary that force you to absorb and assimilate information faster than any educational setting—and that’s a great thing!

But how can you possibly have real conversations with real Italian people if you are just starting out?

3 Conversation Strategies for Beginners

Conversation

1. Ask Questions to Keep a Conversation Going

For beginners and even more advanced speakers, the key is to learn to ask questions to keep a conversation going. Of course, they can’t be just random questions or else you may confuse the listener. But, by memorizing a few key questions and the appropriate time to use them, you can easily carry a conversation with minimal vocabulary or experience. And remember, the more Italian conversations you have, the quicker you will learn and master the language!

2. Learn Core Vocabulary Terms as Quickly as Possible

You don’t need to memorize 10,000’s of words to learn conversational Italian. In fact, with just a couple hundred Italian words you could have a very basic Italian conversation. And by learning maybe 1,000-2,000 words, you could carry a conversation with a native speaker about current events, ordering in restaurants, and even getting directions.

3. Study Videos or Audio Lessons that You Can Play and Replay Again and Again

If you want to know how to carry a conversation in Italian, then you need exposure to native speakers—and the more the better. Ideally, studying video or audio lessons is ideal because they provide contextualized learning in your native language and you can play them again and again until mastery.

ItalianPod101 Makes it Easier and More Convenient Than Ever to Learn Conversational Italian

Learning Italian

For more than 10 years, ItalianPod101 has been helping students learn to speak Italian by creating the world’s most advanced online language learning system. Here are just a few of the specific features that will help you learn conversational Italian fast using our proven system:

  • The Largest Collection of HD Video & Audio Lessons from Real Italian Instructors: ItalianPod101 instructors have created hundreds of video and audio lessons that you can play again and again. And the best part is: They don’t just teach you Italian vocabulary and grammar, they are designed to help you learn to speak Italian and teach you practical everyday topics like shopping, ordering, etc!
  • Pronunciation Tools: Use this feature to record and compare yourself with native speakers to quickly improve your pronunciation and fluency!
  • 2000 Common Italian Words: Also known as our Core List, these 2,000 words are all you need to learn to speak fluently and carry a conversation with a native speaker!

In all, more than 20 advanced learning tools help you quickly build vocabulary and learn how to carry a conversation with native speakers—starting with your very first lesson.

Conclusion

Although it may seem intimidating for a beginner, the truth is that it is very easy to learn conversational Italian. By learning a few core vocabulary terms and which questions to ask to keep a conversation going, just a little practice and exposure to real Italian conversations or lessons is all it really takes. ItalianPod101 has created the world’s largest online collection of video and audio lessons by real instructors plus loads of advanced tools to help you learn to speak Italian and carry a conversation quickly.

Act now and we’ll also include a list of the most commonly used questions to keep a conversation going so you can literally get started immediately!

5 Techniques of Successful Italian Learners

5 technique

Some Italian learners progress more quickly than others. Is this because they’re smarter, more talented, or maybe just lucky? In some cases perhaps. Most of the time though, a lot of what determines your success in a language is a) the amount and consistency of time you put into it; and b) the way that you go about practicing it.

In this post we’ll take a look at 5 practical techniques that you can use to learn Italian successfully.

target

1. Hit the Easy Targets

Italian comes from the family of the Romantic languages. Romantic languages have deep Latin roots. English has also been influenced by Latin (though not quite as much). Latin isn’t the only language to influence European languages. Greek also had a huge part to play. Also hidden in many languages are words based in languages you wouldn’t expect. Take the English word bazaar (bazar in Italian)….

This word comes from an original Persian word. Over the years languages (along with cultures) have rubbed shoulders and influenced one another. As a result neither Italian nor English has developed in isolation. This means English and Italian have words with similar meanings, spellings, and sounds that both originated from a separate third language.

These words are known as cognates. Cognates are great for language learners because they often look and sound similar in your native and target languages. Here’s a few English/Italian cognates:

Problema-Problem
Temperatura-Temperature
Originale-Original
Terribile-Terrible

Learning cognates sometimes feels like cheating because they are so easy to use and remember. In reality though you already learned them when you learned English. Because you’re a native English speaker you have a mild head start in learning Italian over the native speakers of languages that aren’t as closely related. That being said, learn as many cognates as you can! Even if the word isn’t as common it could still come in handy if you get stuck.

2. Break down most difficult parts of Italian grammar

There’s always been a bit of debate in the language learning world as to whether or not you should learn grammar explicitly or implicitly. I don’t think a lack of grammar should ever keep you from trying to speak a foreign language.

However I do think that implicit learning by itself doesn’t work well when dealing with more complicated grammar. In some of my reviews I’ve written about how beginners often decry one of the most popular language courses out there because it simply doesn’t explain grammar.

Tenses, verb conjugations, noun inflection…there’s some tough spots in Italian grammar. As you come across these foreign grammar concepts take some time to study and practice them. Hone in on one aspect at a time and practice using it by writing out sentences or simply by speaking.

Read different grammatical explanations and example sentences. While you don’t want to spend all your time grinding out grammar exercises, 10 or 15 minutes a day of focused practice will help you master these otherwise difficult areas of the language.

Another great way to master Italian grammar is to work with whole phrases or conversations. This isn’t as easy to do while you’re speaking with someone, but it can be done with Italian audio. ItalianPod101’s podcast episodes are ideal for this because they feature native Italian conversations.

As you study and work through a conversation first look at the words and phrases that you do know. Then without resorting to a translator or dictionary, do your best to figure out what any new or unfamiliar words mean. After that feel free to look them up. If you work this way with whole sentences you are much more likely to internalize Italian grammar.

speaker

3. Practice with native speakers

Italian course books, apps, and podcasts are all great ways to learn the language, but eventually the rubber will have to meet the road and you’ll need to start using what you learn. The best students of Italian take every opportunity they can to practice the language with real people.

Italian may not be quite as popular to learn as Spanish or French, but even so there are still a lot of other Italian learners out there. Try to link up with a meetup or language exchange in your town or city. If you’re unable to find an exchange in your area take the search online and find some native Italian speakers on free sites like Wespeke or Hellolingo. These sites connect language learners around the world. Here you can help out an Italian who is learning English, while they in turn can help you practice Italian. It’s a win-win.

focus

4. Focus on being understood, not being perfect

Undoubtedly when you begin to speak Italian with native speakers you will make a lot of mistakes. This is a natural part of the language learning process. In your first few conversations you’ll probably mispronounce, misconjugate, or all together forget Italian words. But that’s okay. Learn to embrace these mistakes. As long as you’re practicing with a native speaker who can give you accurate feedback, those mistakes can do nothing but help you improve.

After getting feedback on your mistakes, the next most important thing in your spoken language practice will be to keep the conversation going (in Italian of course). If you make a mistake correct it and move on. If you can’t remember a word do your best to describe it in Italian to your language partner. Use what words you have in order to be understood, even if your sentence or diction comes out a little weird.

journal

5. Keep an Italian journal

Most people talk about how important it is to speak a language you’re learning, but not nearly as many mention how powerful writing in the language can be. Writing in Italian lets you use all the material you’ve learned but without the demands of a real time conversation. Writing is also an excellent way to expose the words or phrases you don’t know or are unsure about.

You can write in an old fashioned paper journal and do your best to check it or have an Italian friend look over it. You can also write entries online and have them corrected by Italian speakers. Lang-8 lets you do just that. The site is completely free. There you can write a short entry in Italian and receive feedback almost instantly!

Final thoughts

Italian is a beautiful and worthwhile language to learn. While it’s not always easy to speak, it is always rewarding. Use these tips as a guide to jumpstart your progress. No matter what, keep your head up and stick to your guns. After a bit of patience and hard work you’ll be speaking Italian soon enough!

How to Start Thinking in Italian

Learn 4 tools and techniques to stop translating in your head and start thinking in Italian

Going through Italian lessons is enough to get by and learn the basics of Italian, but to truly become fluent you need to be able to think in Italian. This will allow you to have conversations with ease, read smoothly, and comprehensively understand natives. To do this, you need to go beyond just completing daily or weekly lessons.

We naturally translate in our heads because it’s viewed as the easiest way to learn the definitions needed when learning a language. This way of learning can actually hinder your skills and fluency later on. If your brain has to make neural connections between the word you’re learning, what it means in your native tongue, and the physical object the connection will not be nearly as strong. When you bypass the original translation between Italian and your native language then there is a more basic and strong connection between just the Italian vocabulary word and the tangible object.

start thinking in Italian

In this blog post, you will learn the 4 important techniques to easily and naturally begin to speculate about the daily occurrences in your life. The best part is all of these techniques are supported and can be achieved through ItalianPod101.com.

Create Your Free Lifetime Account and Start Learning the whole Italian Language from the Beginning!

1. Surround yourself with Italian

Surround Yourself

By surrounding yourself with Italian constantly you will completely immerse yourself in the language. Without realizing it you’ll be learning pronunciation, sentence structures, grammar, and new vocabulary. You can play music in the background while you’re cooking or have a Italian radio station on while you study. Immersion is a key factor with this learning process because it is one of the easiest things to do, but very effective. Even if you are not giving the program your full attention you will be learning.

One great feature of ItalianPod101.com is the endless podcasts that are available to you. You can even download and listen to them on the go. These podcasts are interesting and are perfect for the intention of immersion, they are easy to listen to as background noise and are interesting enough to give your full attention. Many of them contain stories that you follow as you go through the lessons which push you to keep going.

2. Learn through observation
learn through observation

Learning through observation is the most natural way to learn. Observation is how we all learned our native languages as infants and it’s a wonder why we stop learning this way. If you have patience and learn through observation then Italian words will have their own meanings rather than meanings in reference to your native language. Ideally, you should skip the bilingual dictionary and just buy a dictionary in Italian.

ItalianPod101.com also offers the materials to learn this way. We have numerous video lessons which present situational usage of each word or phrase instead of just a direct translation. This holds true for many of our videos and how we teach Italian.

3. Speak out loud to yourself
talk to yourself

Speaking to yourself in Italian not only gets you in the mindset of Italian, but also makes you listen to how you speak. It forces you to correct any errors with pronunciation and makes it easy to spot grammar mistakes. When you speak out loud talk about what you did that day and what you plan to do the next day. Your goal is to be the most comfortable speaking out loud and to easily create sentences. Once you feel comfortable talking to yourself start consciously thinking in your head about your daily activities and what is going on around you throughout the day.

With ItalianPod101.com you start speaking right away, not only this, but they have you repeat words and conversations after a native Italian speaker. This makes your pronunciation very accurate! With this help, you are on the fast path to making clear and complex sentences and then actively thinking about your day.

4. Practice daily

If you don’t practice daily then your progress will be greatly slowed. Many people are tempted to take the 20-30 minutes they should be practicing a day and practice 120 in one day and skip the other days. This isn’t nearly as effective because everyday you practice you are reinforcing the skills and knowledge you have learned. If you practice all in one day you don’t retain the information because the brain can realistically only focus for 30 minutes at most. If you’re studying for 120 minutes on the same subject little of the information will be absorbed. Studying everyday allows you to review material that you went over previous days and absorb a small amount of information at a time.

It’s tough to find motivation to study everyday, but ItalianPod101.com can help. It’s easy to stay motivated with ItalianPod101.com because we give you a set learning path, with this path we show how much progress you’ve made. This makes you stick to your goals and keep going!

Conclusion

Following the steps and having patience is the hardest part to achieving your goals, it’s not easy learning a new language. You are essentially teaching your brain to categorize the world in a completely new way. Stick with it and you can do it just remember the 4 tools I taught you today! With them, conversations, reading, and understanding will become much easier. The most important thing to remember is to use the tools that ItalianPod101.com provides and you will be on your way to being fluent!

Learn Italian With ItalianPod101 Today!

5 Ways To Improve Your Italian Speaking Skills

5 Ways To Improve Your Italian Speaking Skills

Speaking is usually the #1 weakness for all Italian learners. This is a common issue among language learners everywhere. The reason for this is obvious: When language learners first start learning a language, they usually start with reading. They read online articles, books, information on apps and so on. If they take a class, they spend 20% of their time repeating words, and 80% of the time reading the textbook, doing homework or just listening to a teacher. So, if you spend most of your time reading instead of speaking, you might get better at reading but your speaking skills never grow. You get better at what you focus on.

So if you want to improve you speaking skills, you need to spend more of your study time on speaking. Here are five tips to help you get started:

1. Read out loud
If you’re listening to a lesson and reading along, read out loud. Then re-read and speed up your tempo. Do this again and again until you can speak faster. Try your best to pronounce the words correctly, but don’t obsess about it. Read swiftly, emote and put some inflection on the sentences. Reading aloud helps to train the muscles of your mouth and diaphragm to produce unfamiliar words and sounds.

Read out loud!

2. Prepare things to say ahead of time.
As you may know from experience, most learners run out of things to say. But, if you prepare lines ahead of time, you won’t be at a loss for words in conversations. This will help you not only to learn how to say the words, but how to say them in the right context. A good way to prepare yourself before conversations is with our Top 25 Questions Series, which teaches you how to ask the most common conversational questions, and how to answer them, in Italian:

Click here to learn the top 25 Italian questions you need to know.

3. Use shadowing (repeat the dialogues as you hear them).
Shadowing is an extremely useful tool for increasing fluency as well as improving your accent and ability to be understood. Shadowing helps create all the neural connections in your brain to produce those words and sentences quickly and accurately without having to think about it. Also, as mentioned in tip #1, shadowing helps develop the muscle memory in all the physical parts responsible for the production of those sounds. Depending on what your primary and target languages are, it’s quite likely that there are a lot of sounds your mouth just isn’t used to producing. Shadowing can be done, for example, when watching TV shows or movies or listening to music.

Each one of our lessons begins with a dialogue. Try to shadow the conversation line by line, and you’ll be mastering it in no time.

Click here to for a FREE taste of our Absolute Beginner series!

4. Review again and again.
This is the key to perfection, and we can’t emphasize it enough. Most learners don’t review! If you review and repeat lines again and again, you’ll be speaking better, faster and with more confidence.

Review again and again

5. DON’T BE AFRAID TO MAKE MISTAKES!
You’d be surprised by how many people try to avoid talking! The more you speak, the faster you learn – and that is why you’re learning Italian. Practice speaking every chance you get: whether it’s ordering coffee, shopping or asking for directions.

Sneak Peek: Review More Italian with This Feature, Badges & Your 26% OFF

Click here to get 26% OFF + A FREE Audiobook!

Hello Listener,

You’ll want to know about these 2 new Italian learning tools and features. They’re great for reviewing, motivation and progress. One is an unofficial sneak peek.

So what are they? The brand new Achievement Badges and the Word Bank! And… if you want to master Italian, unlock our proven learning system at 26% OFF and get a Bonus 6.5-hour Audiobook!

In this month’s newsletter:

  1. 72 Hours Left! Click here to get 26% OFF + FREE 6.5-Hour Audiobook
  2. New Feature! Achievement Badges Now Available for Premium PLUS
  3. Sneak Peek: Save & Review Vocab with this Study Tool



1. Ends Friday! Learn Italian with 26% OFF & a FREE Audiobook!
No school. No stress. Learn Italian at your pace and start speaking in minutes with effective lessons! ‘Til Friday only, get 26% OFF any 1- or 2-year plan and a BONUS Italian Audiobook as a 2-for-1 deal. You get access to 170+ hours of audio and video lessons by teachers, lesson notes, motivational progress stats, apps, study tools and more. Just $2.96/month and up to $62.40 OFF. Hurry! Ends Friday, 8/28/2015!

Click here to learn Italian and get 26% OFF. Up to $62.40 in savings.
(The free 6.5-hour Italian audiobook will be inside your welcome email)

2. NEW Feature! Learn and Stay Motivated with NEW Achievement Badges
Learning Italian? You deserve recognition and motivation. So, if you’re a Premium PLUS member… you can now unlock new badges as your Italian improves. Your Premium PLUS teacher will give out badges as you complete weekly assignments. The result? You master more Italian, unlock badges for your progress, and stay motivated to keep going.

Click here to learn about the Premium PLUS Achievement Badges!

3. Here’s a Sneak Peek at the Newly Redesigned Word Bank!
We haven’t fully announced this yet… but here’s a sneak peek! The Word Bank – your personal collection of words and phrases – is better than ever. What’s new? First, a shiny new design. You can sort and manage your vocab and phrases with custom labels. And feel free to print out your entries as physical study material or export them as files! Not a Premium member? Take advantage of the 26% discount by Friday.

Premium Users: Click here to access the New Word Bank!
(Note: You must be logged in to access this)

To your fluency,
Team ItalianPod101

P.S. We’re giving you a BONUS 6.5-Hour Audiobook. Get 26% OFF by Friday!
No school or textbooks necessary to learn Italian! In fact, you get a FREE Audiobook when you get 26% OFF any 1- or 2-year plan. Master Italian in LESS time with this 2-for-1 deal! Unlock our learning system – over 170 hours of audio and video lesson by real teachers and more! Just $2.96/month and up to $62.40 OFF. Hurry! Ends Friday, 8/28/2015!

Ends Friday! Click here to learn Italian and Get 26% OFF!
(Your FREE Audiobook will instantly be available in your welcome email)

Click here to get 26% OFF + A FREE Audiobook!

6 Reasons to Learn a Language Before You Travel

6 Reasons to Learn a Language Before You Travel

There are plenty of destinations where you can get by with English, but sometimes you want to do better than just ‘get by’. Here are 6 reasons you should learn the basics of the language of your next trip destination.

What are the 6 reasons you should learn the basics of the language of your next trip destination?

1. You will be able to discover your destination better than other tourists.
Getting by is one thing, but actually experiencing a trip abroad is quite another. No amount of guidebooks and online research can compensate for a basic lack of language ability. Speaking the language of your destination permits you to explore that destination beyond the regular tourist traps. Your language skills will not only allow you to dig into all the hidden gems of your destination, but they will also allow you to mingle with the locals to get a true experience on your holiday. Think of it this way: you’re not restricted to talking to the people at the tourist desk anymore.

2. Knowing how to communicate with local police or medical personnel can be life-saving.
Before you leave for your destination, make sure you learn how to ask for help in that destination’s local tongue. Do you know how to ask the waiter if this dish has peanuts in it? Or tell your host family that you’re allergic to fish? Can you tell the local doctor where it hurts? Moreover, an awareness of an environment improves your chance of remaining safe inside it. For example, walking around a busy marketplace, dazzled by an unfamiliar language, signs and accents will instantly render any tourist a more attractive mark for pickpockets. Communicating with other people, asking questions and looking confident will make you look like a semi-local yourself, and will ward off potential thieves.

Click here for Italian Survival Phrases that will help you in almost every situation

3. It helps you relax.
Traveling is much less stressful when you understand what that announcement at the airport was saying, or if this bus line reaches your hotel. These things stress you out when traveling and they disappear when you understand the language. This allows you to focus on planning your trip in a better, easier way.

Speaking the language can provide you with a way to get to know people you’d never otherwise have the opportunity to speak with.

4. Speaking the language can provide you with a way to get to know people you’d never otherwise have the opportunity to speak with.
Sometimes those relationships turn into friendships, and other times they’re nothing more than a lively conversation. Either way, as Nelson Mandela said: “If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.” When you approach someone – even staff at a store or restaurant – with English, rather than their own language, an invisible divide has already been erected. Making even a small effort to communicate in the language of the place you’re visiting can go a long way and you’ll find many more doors open up to you as a result.

Click here for the Top 25 Italian Questions you need to know to start a conversation with anyone

If you talk to a man in a language he understands, that goes to his head. If you talk to him in his language, that goes to his heart.

5. You’ll be a better ambassador for your country.
If we’re honest with ourselves, we know very little about other countries and cultures, especially the local politics. And what we do know is often filtered to us by the media, which tends to represent only certain interests. When you can speak the local language, you’re able to answer questions that curious locals have about your country and culture. Are you frustrated with how your country is presented in global news? Are you embarrassed by your country’s leaders and want to make it clear that not everyone is like that where you’re from? This is a very good opportunity to share your story with people who have no one else to ask. We all have a responsibility to be representatives of the place we come from.

6. Learning another language can fend off Alzheimer’s, keep your brain healthy and generally make you smarter.

You’re Too Cool for School: Master Italian at 26% OFF & Get a FREE Audiobook

Click here to get 26% OFF & a free Audiobook!

Hello Listener,

Did you start this year out with a resolution to learn Italian? Haven’t found time to make it happen yet? Well, with students everywhere going back to school this month… Now’s a perfect time to renew your dream of truly learning Italian.

Even if you’re a complete beginner. Even if you’re out of school…
You can and will learn Italian with 170+ hours of lessons from real teachers. The Too Cool for School Sale at ItalianPod101 starts today:

Click here to get 26% OFF & a free Audiobook!
Click here to get 26% OFF & a free Audiobook!

Start speaking Italian from your very first lesson and get our entire Italian learning system at 26% OFF! That’s just $2.96/month with Basic or $7.40/month with Premium and up to $62.40 in savings. So if you upgrade now, you instantly receive:

How does it work? And how will you learn Italian?
Learning Italian in a class simply isn’t an option for most of us with work, family and busy schedules. Between the excessive costs and the inconveniences of getting to class and working around someone else’s schedule, classrooms aren’t realistic.

But at ItalianPod101, you get fun, effective and proven lessons from real Italian teachers. The entire learning system was designed to help you overcome the obstacles of traditional classes, because:

  • ItalianPod101 is a Mere Fraction of the Cost of Classrooms
  • You Get 170+ Hours of Audio & Video Lessons from Real Italian Teachers
  • You Access Lessons & Study Tools With Your Computer or Any Mobile Device
  • You Learn at Your Own Pace and When It’s Convenient For You
  • There Are No Extra Textbooks To Buy (But you do get a FREE Audiobook!)

Click Here to Get 26% Off Any Annual Subscription & A Italian Audiobook FREE!

That’s right: You learn whenever and wherever is convenient for you and at a pace you choose! And during the Too Cool for School Sale, just sign up for any annual Basic or Premium subscription by clicking on any link and we’ll instantly discount the price by 26%!

And with a Premium plan, you’re unlocking the entire system….

  • Exclusive! App for the iPhone, iPad or Android
  • Full Lesson Library Access: 990+ Italian Lessons
  • Read Along with Every Lesson with PDF Lesson Notes
  • Get Instructor Feedback & Comments on Each Lesson
  • Stay Motivated & See Your Progress Grow with Progress Tracking
  • Know Which Lesson to Study Next with Learning Guidance
  • Hear the Conversation Line by Line with the Line by Line Dialogue
  • Get Full Lesson Transcripts, Translations & Review Tracks
  • Get Extra Practice with Review Quizzes for Every Lesson
  • Master Italian Words Fast with Smart Online Flashcards
  • Reach Conversational Fluency with the 2,000 Top Italian Word List
  • Save Words & Phrases for Later Review with the Word Bank
  • Perfect Your Pronunciation with Voice Recording Tools
  • 24/7 Access via Any Device with Internet Access
  • Get All the Vocab from a Lesson Season with Season Vocabulary
  • Exclusive! Create Your Own Word Lists with the Custom Lists App
  • …and much more!

Click here to get UNLIMITED access for just $0.24/day or $7.40/month!
(Your FREE Audiobook will instantly be available in your welcome email.)

So for the next few days, that means you gain full access to our Basic plan for as low as just $2.96 per month or our most popular Premium plan for just $7.40 a month – a mere fraction of what you would pay for traditional classroom instruction!

Don’t Forget Your FREE Italian Audiobook!
Get the best of both worlds with real-life conversation and the in-depth explanations of a textbook! Listen to over 6.5 hours of lessons and read along with 200+ pages. You’ll get your free Audiobook instantly when you upgrade, inside the welcome email.

Click Here To Learn Italian At 26% OFF & Get Your Free Audiobook!

And Upgrading is Risk-Free.

Remember, you get a 60-Day Money-Back Guarantee so if plans change or you are anything less than thrilled with our language learning system – we’ll promptly refund your entire order without any hassles or questions.

But hurry: Although it’s never too late to make a fresh start and realize your dream of learning Italian, the Too Cool for School Sale ends soon, so….

Click here to learn Italian with 170+ hours of Italian lessons & save up to $62.40
(Your FREE Audiobook will instantly be available in your welcome email.)

To Making a Fresh Start,

Team ItalianPod101

P.S. All subscriptions are fully backed by our 60-day money-back guarantee meaning you can lock in your savings now and if you later decide that you’re not learning Italian as fast as you’d like, then we’ll refund your entire subscription amount. You have nothing to lose but you have to ACT NOW before this Too Cool for School Sale ends!

Click here to get UNLIMITED Italian learning for just $0.24/day or $7.40/month!
(Your FREE Audiobook will instantly be available in your welcome email.)

3 Consistent Ways You’ll Learn Italian Fast: All New Lessons, Word Lists & 29% OFF!

Get a hot 29% OFF!

Hi there Listener,

When you’re learning Italian and want real progress…look for the consistent method. One that’s non-stop and keeps you going. What’s a good one? ItalianPod101 Lessons – free audio and video lessons, every week. In fact, a new season of lessons has started this month that you can grab. Anything else? Vocab lists, where you learn new words and phrases all the time. And don’t forget that our 29% OFF Summer of Italian Sale ends Friday!

In this month’s newsletter…

  1. Sale Ends Friday! Click Here to Get 29% OFF Basic or Premium!
  2. A New Season Has Started: New, Free, Weekly Italian Lessons
  3. Free Feature Alert: Speak More Italian With Word & Phrase Lists

1. Summer of Italian Sale ends Friday! Get a HOT 29% OFF!
Want to speak and understand Italian like a native speaker? Get 29% OFF and start speaking Italian with lessons by real teachers. Unlock our entire Italian course and learning system – 170+ hours of audio and video lessons, mobile apps, lesson notes, study tools and more! Just $2.84/month and up to $69.60 OFF! Ends 7/31/2015!

Click Here to Save up to $69.60 on the Most Effective Italian Course!
(Discounted prices ONLY available until Friday, July 31st, 2015!)

2. New Lessons Started this July – Here’s the 2015 Lesson Schedule!
Now, we know that you want more lessons. They’re non-stop, free and get you speaking more Italian in minutes. So, you should know that new lessons and seasons started on July 6th. What kind of lessons? And what days do they come out on? Check the publishing schedule. And if you want to get our entire system – over 170+ hours of lessons – grab the 29% discount above!

Click Here to See the New Lesson Publishing Schedule!

3. Free Feature Alert: Speak More Italian with Word & Phrase Lists
Here’s another non-stop way to boost your Italian – Italian Word and Phrase Lists. They’re based on holidays, current events and all-around useful topics. Our listeners learned how to talk about their summer plans in Italian with a recent list! Just click below, access any list and review with definitions, sample sentences and audio pronunciation.

Click Here to Access the Free Italian Word & Phrase Lists.

To your Italian fluency,

Team ItalianPod101

P.S. Ends Friday! Get a HOT 29% OFF the Most Effective Italian Course!
Ready to master more Italian this summer? Get 29% OFF any plan and start speaking Italian with lessons by real teachers. Unlock our ENTIRE learning system – 170+ hours of audio and video lessons, mobile apps, lesson notes, study tools and more! Just $2.84/month and up to $69.60 OFF! Ends 7/31/2015!

Click Here to Get 29% OFF the Most Effective Italian Course!
(Discounted prices ONLY available until Friday, July 31st, 2015!)

Get a hot 29% OFF!