35 Useful Serbian Phrases To Get You Started Speaking Serbian Today
I want to share with you 35 useful Serbian phrases to help you get started speaking Serbian today.
My name is Cam and I started learning Serbian a few years ago. In the beginning, I didn’t speak much Serbian, but over the years I became proficient in the system of the language which then helped me with my fluency. Today, I speak Serbian with my friends and family on a daily basis and I continue to learn. It’s a wonderful feeling being able to express yourself in a new language and connecting with people and cultures you love. If you are thinking about learning Serbian, I encourage you to do it. Achieving proficiency in any language requires learning, commitment, and lots of practice but it can be done! If you are a beginner learner or someone who is thinking about learning Serbian, phrases and expressions are a good place to start. Let’s begin!
Formal & Informal Speech in Serbian
It’s important to know that the Serbian language has two forms of speech: Formal and Informal. Formal Speech is used when talking to people older than you or with people you don’t know. People in Serbia use Formal Speech to show respect to elders, and in some instances to keep a working relationship “professional”. Informal Speech is used for casual conversations with people you know or with people who are younger than you.
Now that we have covered these important points, let us jump into the useful Serbian phrases.
“Hello” in Serbian
“Hello” in Serbian is Zdravo. This informal greeting is related to the world “zdravlje” which means “health”. So when you are saying zdravo in Serbian to someone, you are literally wishing them good health. A more formal greeting would be dobar dan which means “good day” or “good afternoon”.
“How are you?” in Serbian
“How are you?” in informal Serbian is Kako si? and in formal Serbian is Kako ste?
“I’m Good” / “I’m Not Good” in Serbian
To reply to Kako si? or Kako ste? you can say either Dobro sam for “I’m good” or Nisam dobro for “I’m not good”.
“Please” in Serbian
Molim is “please” in Serbian. If you want to be more polite and formal you can say Molim Vas.
“Thank You” in Serbian
In Serbian, “thank you” is Hvala. And again, if you want to be more polite and formal you can say Hvala Vam.
“You’re Welcome” in Serbian
Nema na čemu is “You’re welcome”. The context behind this phrase in Serbian is “There is nothing for you to thank me for”.
“Good Morning” in Serbian
“Good morning” in Serbian is Dobro jutro. You will often hear the abbreviated version of this greeting in Serbia as ‘bro jutro! where “do” (from “dobro”) is left out.
“Good Night” in Serbian
“Good night” in Serbian is Laku noć. This literally means “Have a light night”.
“Goodbye” in Serbian
There are two ways to say “Goodbye” in Serbian. First is zbogom which is similar to “farewell” in English, and it’s used when you are saying goodbye to a person you’re not going to see for a very long time.
The second way to say “goodbye” in Serbian is doviđenja. This is a formal phrase and it’s used in everyday situations for example when you leave a store or any public place.
“Yes” and “No” in Serbian
“Yes” in Serbian is da and “no” in Serbian is ne.
“Excuse me” in Serbian
“Excuse me ” in Serbian is izvinite or pardon.
“I’m sorry” in Serbian
“I’m sorry ” in Serbian is Žao mi je.
“Do You Speak…” in Serbian
To ask if someone speaks a certain language, you can say Da li govorite…? in formal Serbian and Da li govoriš…? in informal Serbian. For example, if you want to ask them politely if they speak English, you would say Da li govorite engleski? People may also ask you this question using informal speech, which is Da li govoriš srpski?
To answer this question you can say:
- “I only speak a little Serbian” – Ja govorim srpski samo malo
- “Yes, I speak Serbian ” – Da, ja govorim srpski
- “No, I don’t speak it” – Ne, ja ne govorim srpski
- “Could you repeat that please?” – Možete li da ponovite to, molim Vas? (formal), Možeš li da ponoviš to, molim te? (informal)
- “I don’t understand” – Ne razumem
“What is your name?” in Serbian
If you’ve introduced yourself and want to ask what the other person’s name is, you can use this formal phrase Kako se zovete? or to say this informally to a person younger than you, you could say Kako se zoveš? To answer this question you can simply say Zovem se… and say your name. For example: Zovem se Marko.
Some other useful Serbian phrases for eating out:
“I’d like to see the menu, please” – Želeo bih da vidim meni, molim Vas if you are a man, and Želela bih da vidim meni, molim Vas if you are a woman
“I’ll take this” – Uzeću ovo
“Give me that (one), please” – Dajte mi to, molim Vas
“How much is it?” – Koliko košta?
“The bill/check, please” – Račun, molim Vas
“Could you help me?” – Možete li da mi pomognete? (formal) and Možeš li da mi pomogneš? (informal)
You may also like this video – My Favorite 5 Words In Serbian
Now you’ve learned how to introduce yourself and some of the most common Serbian phrases and expressions! I hope these 35 useful Serbian phrases help you with your Serbian. Share this post with a friend who would like to learn Serbian, and give yourself the gift of learning more. If you are thinking about learning Serbian, one of the best ways is to learn with language podcasts – short audio & video lessons for fast learning with ease. These podcasts explain to you the system of the language so you can start making sentences of your own, as well as provide you with more useful phrases you can start using right away. I highly recommend you check out Serbian Language Podcast. They have a Serbian Online Course and it will take you from absolute beginner to advanced. Click here to learn more about it. Cheers to your language learning journey!