Some useful phrases for shopping

Thu, 12/09/2010 - 08:53

If you are going to be in Italy between now and Christmas, we are sure you will want to do some Christmas shopping, including looking for a present for yourself, so here are some phrases to help you.

The British, of course, are famous for “just wanting a look” in shops so if this is what you want to do, you can say:

“Vorrei dare un’occhiata” or “Vorrei guardare un po," - “I’d like to have a look”.

If you are looking for that special gift, you can say,

“Cerco qualcosa per…” - “I’m looking for something for…”

and you will receive a lot of help!

If you need to try something on, you can say,

“Posso provarlo?” or “Posso provarla?” depending on whether the item is masculine or feminine – remember all those object pronouns? But don’t worry if you can’t remember as “Posso provarlo?” will do just fine.

The assistant will probably ask you,

“Che taglia?” or “Che misura?” - “What size?”

If something doesn’t fit, you can say:

“E troppo piccolo /a” or “E troppo grande” – “It’s too big / small.”

Don’t forget this all-important question:

“Quanto costa?” – “How much is it?”

If something is too expensive, you can ask:

“Ha qualcosa di meno costoso?” – “Do you have something less expensive?”

[In markets, just looking as if you are going to walk away is usually enough to obtain a reduction!]

If you decide to buy something, you can say,

“Lo / la / li / le prendo” – “I’ll take it / them” [object pronouns again!] or just,

“Va bene” – “That’s fine.”

All Italian stores will gift wrap items free of charge and the assistant will usually ask if you want the

“confezione regalo” – “gift wrapping”.

Or you can say,

“Confezione regalo, per favore” – “Please can you gift wrap?”

If the item is fragile and you have to put it in your luggage, you can say,

“Può imballarlo bene per il viaggio, per favore?” - “Please can you wrap it well for the journey?”

Again, the shop assistant will be happy to do this free of charge.

Finally, don’t forget to say,

“Grazie e buon Natale” – “Thank you and Merry Christmas” !

Don't forget to check out our online shop which is dedicated to all thngs Italy, we have plenty of artisan-made goods and special Christmas foodie hampers that would delight any Italofile!