Home Language HacksItalian 11 Secret Hacks That’ll Help You Learn Italian FASTER

11 Secret Hacks That’ll Help You Learn Italian FASTER

Want the secrets to learn Italian faster? Speak Italian like you've always wanted to with these simple and effective language hacks.

by Michele
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11 Effective Hacks That'll Help You Learn Italian So Much Faster
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Looking for the quickest ways to learn Italian? Reading this guide is one of them! Italy holds a very special place in my heart. It’s my heritage and I’m named after my nonno (nohn-noh)(grandfather). You can read all about how speaking Italian changed my life which inspired me to create a series of online Italian courses using my 80/20 method. I offer a range of online self-paced video courses including my travel Italian course (ideal if you have a trip coming up), Confident Conversations which helps you understand fast spoken Italian, and my 3-in-depth Italian courses that take you from beginner (A1), to advanced beginner (A2) to a proficient intermediate (B1) level in Italian. Whether you’ve got a trip coming up and want to learn some basic Italian phrases or you’re more serious and want to reach an advanced level in Italian, this guide will set you up for success. 

I provide simple but clever language learning hacks you can implement in your daily life that will help you learn Italian more effectively and efficiently. Don’t be afraid to make mistakes when speaking Italian, this is often the best way we learn!

11 ways to learn Italian quicker

1. Read Italian food labels

How to learn Italian Faster - Read Italian food labelsItalian food products can easily be found in most supermarkets around the world. The next time you go shopping and need to purchase something like spaghetti, or olive oil, choose one where the original label is written in Italian. Read the ingredients and cooking instructions, making sure to jot down any new words. Every time you go to use the item, take a moment to re-read the label and see how much you can remember!

2. Listen to Italian Music

How to learn Italian Faster - Listen to Italian music on SpotifyA great way to improve your pronunciation and pick up new words is by listening to Italian songs, and of course, singing along to your favourite canzoni (kahn-tsoh-nee) (songs). I used to listen to Pavarotti, Tiziano Ferro and Jovanotti all the time when I first started learning Italian. And yes, I would sing at the top of my lungs whenever I was driving.

Accessing Italian music online has never been easier, especially with platforms like Spotify and YouTube. Create a playlist of your favourite songs and Google the lyrics. Print them out or copy/paste them into a Google doc and translate each phrase. Alternatively, you can search for the song on Youtube and add “con testo” (kon tes-toh) (with lyrics) and sign along with the music video. Here is a guide to my favourite Italian songs that will help you learn Italian faster.

3. Read Italian newspapers and magazines

How to learn Italian Faster - Read Italian newspapers and magazinesReading a newspaper in a foreign language can be very challenging. Experts agree that journalistic language is some of the hardest to understand. Stick to reading sections that are less serious such as culture, gossip, local events, cinema, and music. You can also read Italian newspapers online, which Italians call il giornale (eel johr-nah-leh). More and more, these newspapers also offer video clips that bring these stories to life such as La Repubblica, Corriere della Sera and Il Sole 24 ore

4. Read short stories in Italian

How to learn Italian Faster - Read Short StoriesOne of the challenges for language learners is finding reading material that is both interesting but not so complex that you need to constantly check a dictionary. There’s nothing worse than purchasing a book you’re excited about only to never finish reading it because “it’s too hard!”

The solution? Short Stories in Italian for Beginners and Intermediate learners. 

I love love LOVE this series, and I’m not the only one. The past two years that I spoke at The Language Show in London, these books were flying off the shelves. 

The Short Stories series is targeted at high-beginner to low-intermediate level learners. Each book includes 8 stories covering a variety of topics from science fiction and crime to history and thriller, which means you’re exposed to a wide range of new vocabulary.

What I love about the Short Stories series is that you feel a real sense of achievement. Chapters are kept short and sentences are simple and not too wordy. New words are highlighted in bold and included in a short glossary at the end of the chapter so you don’t need to rely on a dictionary. There is even a fun comprehension quiz after each chapter to see how well you understood the text.

It’s also important to note that the stores are mapped to A2-B1 Common European Framework of Reference (CEFR) for languages, which means it’s the perfect study companion alongside your other language learning resources.

Check out Short Stories in Italian for Beginners here and Intermediate learners here

5. Order your meal in Italian

How to learn Italian Faster - Cook Italian food and read the label on Italian productsDining at an Italian restaurant or pizzeria? Don’t be shy! Now is your chance to practice your pronunciation as you order your favourite Italian dishes. So many non-Italian speakers pronounce words like bruschetta (broohs-keht-tah) incorrectly, but you can educate your friends at the table when you correctly slip in that k sound. 

Is the staff Italian? Try placing your order in Italian. The server will definitely appreciate the effort. Not sure how to order? Get my free Italian travel phrase guide here or learn how to form your own sentences with my book here. 

6. Tune in to Italian radio, TV programs, series, and podcasts

Many countries have their own radio programs and news broadcasts in Italian for their local Italian communities. Well, consider yourself part of the community! Search which Italian programs are available in your country and tune in as often as you can. Listen while you commute, do housework, or run errands. 

You don’t have to understand everything, but you’ll get the gist of it. Over time, you’ll notice the same words being used over and over. These are the ones to pay attention to and look up in a dictionary if you’re unable to guess their meaning. Programme presenters generally articulate and enunciate very well so you can hear each letter clearly.

You can even listen to programs directly from Italy! Here are two sites to get you started:

7. Watch Italian series and movies

How to learn Italian Faster - Watch Italian moviesLove watching TV shows and movies? Watching a content in the original language is a great way to pick up new words and expressions, and even learn something about the country where the movie takes place. There are loads of Italian movies available on Amazon Prime, Netflix, and DisneyPlus (get my full list of Italian movies on DisneyPlus here) that you can watch with either English or Italian subtitles. Some English movies are even dubbed into Italian. To get your started, here is my guide to the best Italian series on Netflix. Keep a notepad handy and write down any new words you hear or see and look these up later.

Top tip: To access Netflix in Italy, get a VPN to unlock a wide variety of Italian movies and series. I personally use NordVPN. Check out my detailed VPN guide here.

Related: 22 Genius Tips for Language Learning with Netflix [The Only Guide You Need]

8. Listen to Italian language courses

You can listen to Italian language courses – like this excellent Italian Foundation course or this conversation-based course – almost any time: when you go for a run, commute to work, clean your apartment or house, cook, or whenever you like. Don’t forget to repeat aloud what you hear. This helps your brain remember and internalise what you’ve learned.

9. Share your passion with others

Learning a language with other people is much more exciting (and easier!) than doing it by yourself. Having company while you broaden your knowledge of Italian is helpful not only because language is primarily a means of communicating with others, but also because enjoying the process is a vital element in succeeding. Ask a friend, partner, or family member if they want to learn Italian with you, look for local language meet-up events in your area, or sign up for a group lesson course and make new friends — you never know what doors this will open for you!

10. Read up on your favourite Italian landmarks and cities

How to learn Italian Faster - Read up on your favourite Italian landmarks and citiesWith Google at your fingertips, you can read all about your favourite Italian regions, cities, monuments, artists, and moda (moh-dah)(fashion). Jump on Google.it and practice using the correct Italian spelling for things like Roma (roh-ma) (Rome) or the name of a famous city or monument in Italian, such as Firenze (fee-rehn-zeh) (Florence) or il Colosseo (eel koh-lohs-seh-oh) (the Colosseum). 

Visit Italian Wikipedia (it.wikipedia.org) or local tourism board websites to find out more about your favourite regions in Italia (ee-tah-lee-ah) (Italy).

11. Make Italian recipes

How to learn Italian Faster - Make Italian recipesDo as the Italians do best, and cook! Jump on Youtube and type in ricetta (ree-cheh-tah) (recipe) and choose something you’d like to make. Watch the video again and again as you cook alongside the chef. After a while, you’ll be confident enough to turn off the closed caption.

If you’re like me and prefer to have a physical cookbook, purchase one from Italy’s biggest bookstore! The added benefit of this is you can write down any translations directly into the book. 

BONUS Hack: Learn Italian with me, The Intrepid Guide!

How to Learn Italian for Travel FAST!

Travelling to Italy? Don’t be treated like a tourist! Live your best travel experiences and learn Italian for less than the cost of eating at a tourist trap restaurant or a taxi driver who has “taken you for a ride”.  In addition to my free Italian travel phrase guide, I’ve made it even easier for you to master the Italian language so you can create lifelong memories as you mingle with locals, get local tips, avoid tourist traps, and make new friends. Who knows you, you may even be invited over for afternoon tea by a lovely Sicilian family like I was! Read all about how speaking Italian changed my life and check out The Intrepid Guide languages courses here.

Here’s what my students are saying: 

Testimonial - How to Learn Italian for Travel FAST! - Roma Small

I really enjoyed the Master Italian for Travel FAST course, it certainly exceeded my expectations. The learning methodology is great, and easy to follow and found that I progressed much faster in the last 4 weeks than I ever did on my own or using other language apps. Grazie mille Michele, I can’t wait until I can put my new skills into action! – Roma Small

Click here for instant access!

Intrepid Italian - Learn with my 80/20 methodAre you a beginner or an intermediate Italian learner? Got a trip coming up or want to communicate with your Italian partner or relatives in Italian? Learn Italian with my unique 80/20 method

Registrations are now open to join Intrepid Italian, my new series of online video courses that use my unique 80/20 method. You’ll go from a shy, confused beginner to a proficient and confident intermediate speaker, with me as your trusty guide. 

You’ll finally be able to connect with your Italian partner, speak to your relatives and enjoy authentic travel experiences in Italy that you’ve always dreamed of, and so much more.

As a native English speaker who learned Italian as an adult, I know what it’s like to feel hopeless and lack the confidence to speak. I know what it’s like to start from scratch and to even go back to absolute basics and learn what a verb is! 

Intrepid Italian was created with YOU in mind. I use my working knowledge of the English language to help you get into the ‘Italian mindset’ so you can avoid the common pitfalls and errors English speakers make – because I made them once too! I break everything down in such a way that it ‘clicks’ and just makes sense.

No matter what your level is, there is an Intrepid Italian course for you, including:

You can join 1, 2, or all 3 courses, it’s entirely up to you. The best part is that you have lifetime access so you learn anytime, anywhere and on any device.

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Join Intrepid Italian here and start learning today! 
Ci vediamo lì! (See you there!)

Which one of these language tips are you excited to try first? Let me know in the comments!

Watch this guide of tips as a video below.

Learning Italian? Check out these Italian language guides

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11 Effective Hacks That'll Help You Learn Italian So Much Faster

Want to know more about learning languages? Start here!

Italy Travel Guides

Over to you!

Which of these tips will you implement first? What other tips would you add? Tell me below!
Let me know using the comments section below or join me on social media to start a conversation.

Thanks for reading and I hope you enjoyed this post.

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