Want to learn Maltese? Here's a few Maltese phrases to get you started!

It's not necessary to learn Maltese while holidaying in Malta. However, most visitors would still usually like to learn a few Maltese phrases. So if you’d like to learn some Maltese words, read on …

The Maltese language (Malti) is a member of the Semitic language group. This group includes Arabic, Hebrew and Amharic. Some believe that Maltese is a descendant of the language that was spoken by the Phoenicians.

However, most linguists think that it is related to the Arabic dialects of western North Africa. What makes Maltese hugely different from other semitic languages is the fact that it is the only language that is written in Latin script.

Almost everyone in Malta speaks English. English is in fact considered the second language. So if you speak English, you will have no trouble at all to converse with the locals.

It’s always nice to try to learn a couple of phrases in the native language of the country that you’re visiting though.

In fact, most travelers love to use the local equivalent for essential words like “thank you”, “please”, etc when they're talking to Maltese people.


The Maltese Alphabet

The Maltese alphabet has 29 letters that consist of 5 vowels (as in English) and 24 consonants. Perhaps the hardest thing that visitors usually find is the pronunciation, since it differs from English.

Some of the main differences are listed below:

ċ as ch in church

ġ as in j of jolly

ħ as in h of hot

ј as in y of yes

x as in sh of shoe

ż as in z of zebra

għ is silent in most cases

q is a glottal stop (like the sound in the beginning and middle of “uh-oh”)


Maltese Vocabulary

If you’re an English speaker you will recognize many English words that over the years were assimilated by the locals.

This influx of new foreign terms that are integrated into the Maltese language continues to this day. Other words were derived from Italian or Sicilian dialects. You will also recognize a direct French influence too.


Learn Maltese: Basic Conversation

Good Morning … Bonġu

Good Evening … Bonswa

Goodbye …. Saħħa

Yes …. Iva

No … Le

Please … Jekk jogħġbok

Thank you …. Grazzi

Excuse me … Skużani

How are you? … Kif inti?

I’m fine, thank you …. Tajjeb, grazzi (for a man) … Tajba, grazzi (if you’re a woman)

Do you speak English? … Titkellem bl-Ingliż?

What’s your name? …X’jismek?

My Name is …. Jisimni

When does the bus leave/arrive? ….. Meta titlaq/tasal ix-xarabank?

I’d like to hire a car …. Nixtieq nikri karozza.

Today …. Illum

Yesterday …. Il-bieraħ

Morning …. Filgħodu

Afternoon …. Wara nofs in-nhar

Evening …. Fl-għaxija


Learn Maltese: Shopping Phrases and Related Words

How much is it? …. Kemm?

What time does it open/close? …. Fi x’ħin jiftaħ/jagħlaq?

I’d like to buy some … Nixtieq nixtri ftit …

Water ... ilma

Milk ... ħalib

Wine ... inbid

Beer ... birra

Bread ... ħobż

Eggs ... bajd

Meat ... laħam

Fish ... ħut

Fruit ... frott

Greens ... ħaxix

Sugar ... zokkor

Salt ... melħ

Coffee ... kafe

Tea ... té


Learn Maltese: The Days of the Week

Monday ... It-Tnejn

Tuesday ... It-Tlieta

Wednesday ... L-Erbgħa

Thursday ... Il-Hamis

Friday ... Il-Ġimgħa

Saturday ... Is-Sibt

Sunday ... Il-Hadd


Learn Maltese: The Months

January ... Jannar

February ... Frar

March ... Marzu

April ... April

May ... Mejju

June ... Ġunju

July ... Lulju

August ... Awwissu

September ... Settembru

October ... Ottubru

November ... Novembru

December ... Diċembru


Have fun practicing your Maltese! :)


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