Basic German phrases

This free German language lesson is not to be missed - just a few minutes with the Rocket German team and you'll know a range of basic German phrases to use when socializing with German people.

Maybe you want to blend in with the locals or perhaps you need to apologize! Either way, these common German expressions are essential for your German survival kit. Try to use these words in your daily life and it will help you to remember them – it won’t hurt your friends and family to learn a little German too!

Resources for further reading:

Here are some of the most basic German sentences to get you started. Further on in this lesson we will look at the pronunciation of these and more German sentences.

  • Alles Gute! - All the best!
  • Herzliche Grüße an… - Best wishes to...
  • Herzlichen Glückwunsch! - Congratulations!
  • Herzlich Willkommen! - Welcome!
  • Mein Beileid! - With sympathy!
  • Alles Gute zum Geburtstag! - Best wishes on your birthday!
  • Gesundheit! - Bless you!
  • Schöne Ferien! - Have a nice vacation!
  • Frohe Ostern! - Happy Easter!
  • Frohe Weihnachten! - Merry Christmas!

How to pronounce basic German phrases

Sparkling wine in German

Practice Your Pronunciation With Rocket Record

Rocket Record lets you perfect your German pronunciation. Just listen to the native speaker audio and then use the microphone icon to record yourself. Once you’re done, you’ll get a score out of 100 on your pronunciation and can listen to your own audio playback. (Use a headset mic for best results.) Problems? Click here!

Passen Sie auf sich auf!

Take care! (formal)

Frohes neues Jahr!

Happy New Year!

Frohe Weihnachten!

Merry Christmas!

Frohe Ostern!

Happy Easter!

Schöne Ferien!

Have a nice vacation!


Bless you!

Alles Gute zum Geburtstag!

Best wishes on your birthday!

Mein Beileid!

With sympathy!

Herzlich Willkommen!


Herzlichen Glückwunsch!


Herzliche Grüße an…

Best wishes to...

Herzliche Grüße von…

Best wishes from...

Alles Gute!

All the best!

Pass auf dich auf!

Take care! (casual)

Gut gemacht!

Well done!

Viel Erfolg!

Be lucky!

Zum Wohl!

Good health!



Guten Appetit!

Enjoy your meal!

Gute Reise!

Have a good trip!

Alles Liebe!

Lots of love!

Viel Spaß!

Have fun!

Viel Glück!

Good luck!

Let’s review how to apologize again. The easiest way to apologize in German is to say…


Excuse me!

Or in a more casual way…


Excuse me!

You could also say…

Das tut mir leid!

I'm sorry to hear that!

A very polite, but less common way of apologizing in German is to say…



If someone stepped on your toes and apologized you might want to say…

Macht nichts!

No worries!

That’s it for today’s lesson.

Why not check out some more lessons on German phrases next?

Bis bald!

Paul Weber: Rocket German

Make It Stick With Rocket Reinforcement

Reinforce your learning from this lesson with the Rocket Reinforcement activities!