Greece is a beautiful country with a rich history, culture and cuisine. Whether you are visiting the ancient ruins of Athens, the stunning islands of Santorini and Mykonos, or the scenic countryside of Peloponnese, you will surely have an unforgettable experience. But to make your trip even more enjoyable and memorable, why not try to learn some basic Greek words and phrases before you go?
Greek is not an easy language to learn, especially if you are not familiar with the Greek alphabet. But don’t let that discourage you from trying to communicate with the locals in their own language. Greeks are very friendly and hospitable people, and they will appreciate your efforts and help you out if you get stuck. Plus, learning some common Greek expressions will make you feel more confident and comfortable in different situations, such as greeting people, ordering food, asking for directions, or expressing gratitude.
In this blog post, we will provide you with 50 useful Greek words and phrases that you should know before your trip to Greece. We will also give you some tips on how to pronounce them correctly and use them in context. So grab your notebook and pen, and let’s get started!
Greetings in Greek
One of the first things you need to know is how to greet people in Greek. Depending on the time of day, there are different ways to say hello and goodbye in Greek. Here are some of the most common ones:
Γειά σου (Yah-soo)
: This is the informal way to say hi or bye to one person. You can also just say
Γειά σας (Yah-sas)
: This is the formal or plural way to say hi or bye to more than one person or someone you don’t know well.
: This means good morning in Greek and is used until noon.
: This means good afternoon or good evening in Greek and is used from noon until sunset.
: This means good night in Greek and is used after sunset or before going to bed.
Basic Greek Words
Next, you need to know some basic Greek words that will help you express yourself in simple situations. For example, how to say yes or no, please or thank you, excuse me or sorry, etc. Here are some of the essential ones:
: This means yes in Greek. It sounds like the English word “nay”.
: This means no in Greek. It sounds like the English word “oh-hee”.
: This means thank you in Greek. It sounds like “ef-ha-ree-stow”. You can also add
, which means very or a lot, to make it more polite:
ευχαριστώ πολύ (ef-ha-ree-sto po-lee)
: This means please or you’re welcome in Greek. It sounds like “pa-ra-ka-low”. You can use it when asking for something or when responding to a thank you.
: This means excuse me or sorry in Greek. It sounds like “see-gno-mee”. You can use it when apologizing for something or when getting someone’s attention.
: This means help in Greek. It sounds like “voh-ee-thee-aa”. You can use it when you need assistance or when you are in trouble.
Useful Greek Phrases
Finally, you need to know some useful Greek phrases that will help you communicate in different scenarios. For example, how to introduce yourself, ask for directions, order food, or make small talk. Here are some of the most common ones:
Πώς σε λένε; (Pos se le-ne)
: This means what is your name in Greek. It sounds like “pos se leh-neh”. You can use it when meeting someone for the first time. To answer, you can say
Με λένε (Me le-ne)
, which means my name is, followed by your name.
: This means nice to meet you in Greek. It sounds like “ha-ree-kah”. You can use it after introducing yourself or after someone introduces themselves to you.
Από πού είσαι; (A-po poo ee-se)
: This means where are you from in Greek. It sounds like “a-po poo ee-seh”. You can use it when asking someone about their origin or when someone asks you the same question. To answer, you can say
Είμαι από (Ee-me a-po)
, which means I am from, followed by your country or city.
Πώς είσαι; (Pos ee-se)
: This means how are you in Greek. It sounds like “pos ee-seh”. You can use it when greeting someone or when someone greets you. To answer, you can say
, which means good or well, or
Έτσι κι έτσι (Et-see ke et-see)
, which means so-so.
Τι κάνεις; (Ti ka-nees)
: This means what are you doing in Greek. It sounds like “tee ka-nees”. You can use it when asking someone about their activities or when someone asks you the same question. To answer, you can say
, which means I do or I am doing, followed by what you are doing.
Πού είναι ο/η/το…; (Poo ee-ne o/ee/to…)
: This means where is the… in Greek. It sounds like “poo ee-neh o/ee/toh”. You can use it when asking for directions or when looking for something or someone. To answer, you can say
Είναι εκεί (Ee-ne e-kee)
, which means it is there, followed by pointing or describing the location.
Πόσο κάνει; (Po-so ka-nee)
: This means how much is it in Greek. It sounds like “po-so ka-nee”. You can use it when shopping or when asking about prices. To answer, you can say
, which means it costs, followed by the amount.
Μπορώ να πληρώσω με κάρτα; (Bo-ro na pli-ro-so me kar-ta)
: This means can I pay with card in Greek. It sounds like “bo-ro na pli-ro-so me kar-tah”. You can use it when paying for something or when asking about payment methods. To answer, you can say
, which means yes, or
, which means no.
Θέλω να παραγγείλω (The-lo na pa-ran-gee-lo)
: This means I want to order in Greek. It sounds like “the-lo na pa-ran-gee-loh”. You can use it when ordering food or drinks at a restaurant or a cafe. To answer, you can say
Τι θέλετε να παραγγείλετε; (Ti the-le-te na pa-ran-gee-le-te)
, which means what do you want to order, followed by taking the order.
Γεια μας! (Ya