Essential Danish 1

Danish polite phrases & greetings…

If you’re planning to visit Denmark, you can learn and practice 50-100 essential Danish words and phrases here. We’ve posted the first 11.
Listen.
Record yourself.
Play back and compare. 
(See “Learn and Practice Tips” below!)

The First 11 Danish Phrases

Learn and Practice Tips

  • Click the black arrow to hear the Danish speaker.
  • Click the red dot once to record yourself, click the black square to stop recording.
  • When you click the black arrow again, you’ll hear the native speaker and then yourself.
  • Do it several times until you sound like the Danish speaker.

Walking in the country side…

While there’ll be many opportunities to use basic greetings in Copenhagen and other Danish towns, knowing them when you’re outside of a city is even more important. 
Being a visitor in a Denmark will make you much more welcome, when you make the effort to greet people in Danish. 
Yes, the Danes are one of the most English-speaking people in Europe. But surprising locals you meet with just a few Danish words and phrases will often get you a smile.

Personal Experiences and a Little History

In 2013 we took a trip with the Hurtigruten line along the Norwegian coast. During our trip we met several Swedes and also stayed in Stockholm for a week. We learned quite a bit about the common Swedish/Norwegian/Danish history and wrote about the Norwegian Language Politics in our Gamesforlanguage Blog.
Interestingly, the current Norwegian Royal Family was founded by the Danish Prince Carl, (who became King Haakon VII), his British born wife, Princess Maud and son Olav. Prince Carl was “recruited” by the Norwegians after Norway decided by referendum to leave the union with Sweden.
In 2017 we very much enjoyed our 2 weeks in Denmark and wrote about it in our European Travels 8 post.
While we certainly found many similarities between the Nordic languages, we found Danish sometimes difficult to understand because of its tricky pronunciation.

The next 12 Phrases

Once you’ve mastered some of the basic words, polite phrases and greetings, it’s time to learn asking some “where…?” questions. 
Even with GPS enabled smart phones, you’ll often want to know where the bathroom is or the next ATM, information those phones still don’t have!
The next 12 Danish phrases you’ll find in Essential Danish 2.

Author: Ulrike Rettig

Ulrike S. Rettig holds a PhD in Germanic Languages and Literatures from Harvard University. After a teaching career she worked for Pimsleur Language Programs and co-founded GamesforLanguage.com in 2011. Now, with Lingo-Late.com she offers her experience and insights to language lovers before they travel.

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