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Old 02.06.2011, 01:09
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Useful German phrases to say or recognise

I'm moving to Zurich and speak no German. I've been practising saying "Ich bin ein Ausländer. Sprechen Sie Englisch, verdammt!" but I think I may need to be able to say a bit more than that.

So what phrases have people found are the most useful to master when they first move to German-speaking Switzerland? But just as important, are there particular phrases that I should tune my ears to pick up, like "Oi, du Idiot, raus aus dem Weg, dass Straßenbahn!" or "Excuse me Sir, aber Ihr fliegen wird rückgängig gemacht"
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Old 02.06.2011, 01:30
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

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I'm moving to Zurich and speak no German. I've been practising saying "Ich bin ein Ausländer. Sprechen Sie Englisch, verdammt!" but I think I may need to be able to say a bit more than that.

So what phrases have people found are the most useful to master when they first move to German-speaking Switzerland? But just as important, are there particular phrases that I should tune my ears to pick up, like "Oi, du Idiot, raus aus dem Weg, dass Straßenbahn!" or "Excuse me Sir, aber Ihr fliegen wird rückgängig gemacht"
I am not so sure what the other phrases actually say, but "Ich bin ein Ausländer" does not seem to handy to me.
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Old 02.06.2011, 01:43
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

Ein Bier bitte.

Zwei Biere bitte.

Rufen Sie mir bitte ein Taxi. (Corrected, see below)

Ich wohne im Baden, in der Hauptstrasse 23.

Gute nacht, schlaf gut.

aber Ihr fliegen wird rückgängig gemacht" (Your flies need doing up) Ihre Hosen sind offen.

Last edited by Ittigen; 02.06.2011 at 02:19. Reason: spelling of Rüfen vs Rufen
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Old 02.06.2011, 02:05
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

Thanks, so I should at least be able to manage a night out!

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Rüfen Sie mir bitte ein Taxi.
Google says that is "Heck you go and get a taxi" and says I should say "Prüfen Sie mir bitte ein Taxi" instead. I guess will depend on how many biers I've had!
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Old 02.06.2011, 02:18
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

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Thanks, so I should at least be able to manage a night out!



Google says that is "Heck you go and get a taxi" and says I should say "Prüfen Sie mir bitte ein Taxi" instead. I guess will depend on how many biers I've had!
My mistake, it should be "Rufen Sie mir bitte ein Taxi"
no Ü Umlaut on U "Rüfen Sie mir bitte ein Taxi"
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Old 04.06.2011, 05:55
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

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Ich wohne im Baden, in der Hauptstrasse 23.
Ich wohne in Baden, an der Hauptstrasse 23.


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Gute nacht, schlaf gut.
Gute Nacht, schlaf gut "Nacht" is a noun and needs to be capitalized
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Old 04.06.2011, 09:16
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

Pick up a English to German phrase book before you come (buying one here will give you the phonetics of English which you don't need and no phonetics of German, which you might)
Most of the phrases will be more for holiday-makers than for newcomers who want to live here, but it will give you a start (and prevent you learning the sort of phrases people on here will tell you to use, which makes the Thread very funny to us, but might make your life slightly less so if you actually use them).
A good large dictionary with translations of phrases, as opposed to just words, helps. I have a Pons but other folk may recommend something else. And put links like Leo and Google Translate into your favourites.
Good luck.
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Old 04.06.2011, 12:35
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

The problem is to practice listening-none of the phrases you read are going to be recognizable to your ear as you will have "imagined" them to sound like English, never mind that even High German spoken with a Swiss accent is totally different to a German accent!
Handy for learning to read signs though... Achtung! Stop!
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Old 04.06.2011, 12:44
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

Back in the days I used to utter loud "Scheisse kein Deutsch man - sorry don't speak damn language!" and it always worked for me. The other person would either immediately leave or would switch to English. Good luck
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Old 04.06.2011, 12:55
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

Most important: TALK! don't just stare and grin. nobody will know, which language they shall use around you.
I hate staring and grinning foreigners...

And best friend ever: leo.org
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Old 04.06.2011, 13:08
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

It's quite hard to really stare and grin at the same time...
But it is quite normal for many of us to smile in sweet submission when the German wont come out and we are trying not to insult by using our own language.
I did notice many times though that the submission led to an aggresive response so sometimes it's best to be strident and insist on using English if you get tongue-tied in German.
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Old 05.06.2011, 20:31
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

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Ein Bier bitte.

Zwei Biere bitte.
Ein Bier, zwei Bier. (in that context).
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Old 05.06.2011, 21:43
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

You think they speak German here?

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Old 05.06.2011, 21:55
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

This is a good starting point

Bier

Kaffee

Bitte

Danke
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Old 05.06.2011, 23:45
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

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Ein Bier, zwei Bier. (in that context).
isch doch egal, hauptsach bier!
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Old 05.06.2011, 23:56
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

Geil! (cool)
Super geil (super cool
jööööö (expression for anything that's cute, like a kid or animal)
mega
toll! (cool again)
mega toll
mein gott (my god)
gott sei dank (thank god)
nein, es isch nicht wahr (no, that's no true)
du bisch mega lieb (you are super nice)
GOod luck!!
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Old 05.06.2011, 23:57
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

Zurich, eh?

You need to learn: "Gute Nacht, ihr Schlampen!" - Good night, b!tches!
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Old 05.06.2011, 23:57
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

And no worries, almost every swiss speaks some English..they are quite talented in languages.
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Old 05.06.2011, 23:59
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Re: Useful German phrases to say or recognise

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nein, es isch nicht wahr (no, that's no true)
Let's face it: one goes much further by saying ja to the locals most of the time. One doesn't have to mean it, just say it.
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Old 06.06.2011, 00:48
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"Ein Bier" is too complicated. You will then be required to speak more German by responding to questions about what kind. So "Ein Stanger" (sp?) is better since you just get whatever's on tap, no more explaining required.
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