Norwegian Language Blog

Slow Down and Repeat Posted by on Mar 25, 2018 in Conversation

(Free image from Pixabay, no copyright.)

Jeg lærer norsk. Kan du snakke litt langsommere? (I’m learning Norwegian. Could you speak a little bit slower, please?) As a language learner, you’ve probably sometimes found yourself in situations of awkward communication. Maybe you’ve learnt a few setninger (phrases) by heart, and all of a sudden every Norwegian starts telling you their life story at lightning speed. Or even worse: Your uttale (pronunciation) reveals you’re not a native, and people switch to English – which isn’t exactly a great way to learn Norwegian. Good news: Most people are more than happy to give language learners a chance – if you just give them the right clues! 🙂 Here are a few phrases to help you out…

Unnskyld? (Pardon?)

Beklager, jeg forstår ikke? (Sorry, I don’t understand?)

Hva mener du? (What do you mean?)

Hva betyr hurtigrute? (What does hurtigrute mean?)

Hva heter hovercraft på norsk? (What’s hovercraft called in Norwegian?)

Jeg snakker bare litt norsk. (I only speak a little bit Norwegian.)

Jeg er nybegynner. (I’m a beginner.)

Jeg vet ikke. (I don’t know.)

Jeg forstår ikke. (I don’t understand.)

Kan du gjenta det? (Could you repeat it, please?)

Jeg er litt forvirret nå. (I’m a little bit confused now.)

Si det en gang til, er du snill. (Say it again, please – literally: Say it again, if you’re kind.)

Kan du sette ned tempoet litt? (Could you slow down a bit?)

Jeg hører litt dårlig. Kan du snakke høyere? (My hearing is a bit bad. Could you speak louder, please?)

Kan du stave det for meg? (Could you spell it for me?)

Kan du skrive det på en lapp? (Could you write it on a piece of paper?)

Norsk er litt vanskelig, men jeg vil gjerne bli flinkere. (Norwegian is a little bit difficult, but I’d like to become more skilled.)

Kan vi snakke norsk sammen? (Can we speak Norwegian together?)

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About the Author: Bjørn A. Bojesen

I was born in Denmark, but spent large parts of my childhood and study years in Norway. I later returned to Denmark, where I finished my MA in Scandinavian Studies. Having relatives in Sweden as well, I feel very Scandinavian! I enjoy reading and travelling, and sharing stories with you! You’re always welcome to share your thoughts with me and the other readers.


  1. Antón:

    I’m learning Norwegian and I think this quick phrases are very useful. I’ve learned german and it has been very useful by learning Norwegian. My mother tongue is Spanish but I think Norwegian is not that hard.
    I would like to move some day to Norway and learning the languages is a must. Thanks for the great articles and tips. Vennlig hilsen !

    • Bjørn A. Bojesen:

      @Antón @Tusen takk, Antón! 🙂 I’m happy that you found the blog helpful. And yes, German is a great gateway to Norwegian (they have a lot of similarities, even vocab). Good luck with your studies!

  2. Bjørn A. Bojesen:

    @Doug – takk! 🙂