Start learning the most common German phrases

German is a fascinating and melodic language that is thought to be the most scientific language in the world. So, why not learn a few basic German phrases and expressions to enhance your general knowledge and become happier in the process?

There’s an infinite number of sentences in the German language that make learning German feel overwhelming. Let's stay optimistic. We have some good news: you only need to know a fraction of the total number of German sentences to be able to speak German fluently. For example, by knowing as little as 100 words you will understand 50% of any text in German. That's right! You don't have to know the ins and outs of German to have a real conversation with someone from Germany.

The secret is to learn German the smart way. Start with the most common German phrases and expressions and build from there. Learning sentence after sentence, you’ll feel one step closer to fluency. Then, to lock the knowledge in, use the German sentences you learned in real conversations. So, why not make the first step towards learning German today? Let’s go over some common sentences in German you can learn right now. These are just a fraction of the phrases spoken by native German speakers you can listen to on Mondly, our high rated language learning app loved by millions of people around the world.

Top 10 German phrases and sentences you need to know

We have prepared a list of common German expressions that will help you have a basic conversation in German in no time. Let's dig in!

1. Guten Morgen. = Good morning.

If you find yourself in Austria it is always polite to say “Hi” every morning because German speakers are really sociable. “Good morning” in German is "Guten Morgen".

Now enjoy being greeted by a native speaker:

Guten Morgen.

2. Guten Tag. = Good afternoon.

But what if it's later in the day and you want to greet someone from Vienna? Well, “Good afternoon” in German is "Guten Tag".

Now listen to how a German speaker would pronounce it:

Guten Tag.

3. Mein Name ist Mondly. = My name is Mondly.

Let's say your name is Mondly, you are traveling to Munich and meet someone on the street. To introduce yourself you can say "Mein Name ist Mondly" which means "My name is Mondly" in German.

Listen to how a person from Germany would pronounce this phrase:

Mein Name ist Mondly.

4. Nett, Sie kennen zu lernen. = I'm pleased to meet you.

Now that you have introduced yourself, a German speaker would respond "Nett, Sie kennenzulernen" which means "I'm pleased to meet you" in German.

Listen to a native German speaker saying that exact sentence to you right now:

Nett, Sie kennen zu lernen.

5. Wie geht's? = How are you?

At this point, it might be polite to ask the person you are having a conversation with "How are you?" in German.

It’s really easy to pronounce. Here's how to say it:

Wie geht's?

6. Wo bist du? = Where are you?

German speakers are known to be really friendly, so it wouldn't be unusual to make a German friend during your travels. But friends are sometimes late to meetings in which case you might have to call them and ask "Where are you?" in German.

Here's a native speaker showing you how to say it:

Wo bist du?

7. Ich möchte ein Bier. = I'd like a beer.

And because you might find yourself in a bar when visiting Berlin you might have to learn how to order a beer in German.

Let a native German speaker show you how it's done:

Ich möchte ein Bier.

8. Es tut mir leid. = I'm sorry.

There are times when what you ordered is out of stock, so a bartender might say "Es tut mir leid" which means "I'm sorry" in German.

Listen to how it's pronounced:

Es tut mir leid.

9. Bis bald! = See you soon!

This is a good way of saying "See you soon" in German to a co-worker from Switzerland that you are probably going to see the next day.

Delight your senses with a German speaker saying the phrase:

Bis bald!

10. Tschüss. = Good-bye.

Let's end with the best way to end a pleasant conversation politely. This is another way of saying "Goodbye" in German.

Here's how a person from Austria would pronounce it:

Tschüss.
Image showing the basic German phrases and German sentences you can learn with Mondly

Did you know?

Germans have a particular way of counting time: they always refer to the next hour, not the previous one. When a German speaker tell you “Es ist halb sieben”(half seven) you might think they are referring to 7:30. Unfortunately, it actually means “It’s half past six” because the regular translation would be that there are 30 more minutes to 7 o'clock. So, the next time you ask a German for the time, remember this simple rule.

You should also take extra care of how you address a German. German is one of those languages where there’s great emphasis on the formal versus informal, especially in professional situations. When you talk to a person you have to make sure you use the correct form to avoid offending him or her. For example, Germans have a formal and an informal way of saying “What’s your name?”. “Wie heißt du?” is used in situation where you know the person you are speaking with while "Wie heißen Sie?" is how you politely address a stranger or business associate. Only switch to the informal form if you are invited to by your conversational partner. To play it even safer, address a stranger with “Herr”(Mister) or “Frau”(Miss).

The benefits of learning the most common German phrases first

Get smarter day by day

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 German was one of the best choices you ever made.

Have real conversations in German today

Once you start learning a few basic sentences in German you will have the knowledge to start your first German conversation. That’s why, at Mondly, we’ve created experiences that simulate real life conversations to get you speaking German in no time.

Become fluent in German quicker

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

Feel how easy to learn the German language can be

Every language experience should start gradually, from the easiest to the more complex concepts. Starting with the easiest and most common German phrases, you will feel confident in your ability to learn a new language. That’s one of the core principles Mondly is built on.