10 🇨🇭 German Words & Phrases to sound like you're a Swiss Native
Swiss-German is hard to master. In some regions it it considered a dialect whereas in other areas it is officially its own language. While other nations prefer to speak a standard variety and consider dialects "low class", Swiss are proud of their regional differences. Here are 10 phrases & words to make you sound more local- which is appreciated.
- •Eis go ziahLit: go pour one from the tap. [Pronounced: Ice go tsee-ya]Use: after a long day of work, you tell your bro "hey, want to go get a drink?" or Ais go ziah?
- •NatelLit: National telephone [Pronounced: Nah-tell] Use: replacement word for your cell phone, instead of the German word "Handy". Natel is used by all Swiss languages.
- •Isch guet gsiLit: It was good. [ish Goo-et ksi] Use: After anyone asks you how was dinner, the game, or a test.
- •En GueteLit: A good one [an goo-et-tuh] Use: anytime you want to say "Bon appétit!"
- •Hoi Zäme, Salü ZämeLit: Hi y'all, from German 'Hallo zusammen'. [hoi tsa-mah] Use: When you first meet a group of people.
- •Salü/Salii + NameLit: hello, from French "Salut". [nasal sah-loo/saa-lee] Use: anytime you greet someone. Not pronounced the French way at all.
- •"Ga go " + verbLit. Loosely "going to go" [Gah go) Use: anytime you're fixin' to do something. Ex. Ig ga go schlafe (going to sleep) Ig ga go pippalä ( Going for a piss) ig ga go poschtlä ( going shopping)
- •Merci Viilmal, sometimes Märsi ViilmalLit: thank you (from French Merci) many times( from German vielmal). [mer-see feel-maul] Use: anytime you receive a compliment, a gift, or an invitation.
- •WiiLit. Wine [vee] Use anytime someone offers you Rot-Weisswein (wine) you answer Rotwii or Wysswii (visvee).
- •Uf widerluägäLit: goodbye, see you again [oof vider-loo-eh-geh] Use: goodbye
- •Bonus: AdieuLit: send off to God, from French adieu [ ah-jew] Use: goodbye in the Zurich region. However, if you speak French, DO NOT pronounce it the French way.
- •If you can't travel, try these books:
- •Hoi ZämeThere's an English version which is helpful if you have no German language background
- •Kleiner Sprachatlas der deutschen Schweiz
- •The Little PrinceBernese German version
- •Netrolala Schweiz: ein Heimatbuch