Useful phrases for your night out
This post is for your first weekend out in Russia. It will help you in restaurants, bars and clubs. It’s worth learning these phrases so you can practice ordering in Russian and you don’t seem like a complete foreigner. If you can speak some more conversational Russian it will also increase your chances of finding local friends… therefore improving your language skills in the long term!
Most nights-out start with a visit to one of the many bars across the city. If you need some advice in regards to bars, I’d recommend looking through a previous blog post by my colleague, Fredrik. It’s called “5 places to start your night out”.
Starting the night
The phrase means something like “Cheers”, but essentially it’s a general show of respect to the people that you are with. Many people think that saying “Hа здоровье!” is common in Russian, but in fact it isn’t really a phrase used for drinking. Instead, Russian drinking phrases often use the preposition “За” not “На”. “Выпьем!” is also a well-known phrase for “Let’s grab something to drink!”
Мне то же, что и ему
Is a phrase used to order the same food or drink as your colleague. So if you fancy his choice, or are just not too sure how to order, then you’d do well to stick to this phrase.
This phrase is sort of related to the phrase above; it translates to “repeat, please”. Use it to order another drink at the bar or, if you’re hungry, another course!
Ещё по одной, пожалуйста/Налейте ещё
Both phrases mean “another round, please”, certainly important to know when in a bar… For any big night out these two phrases are pretty much mandatory!
Asking for information
Сколько стоит вход?
A phrase used predominantly in clubs. It translates to “how much is entry?”
“Could I have the menu please?” Normally in Russia they’ll give you the menu when you sit down but if you need a special menu, in a particular language or the desert menu for example, this phrase is used commonly.
У вас можно картой расплатиться?
“Is it possible to pay by card?” In a previous blog I mentioned that you can pay by card in most locations, so you’ll only really need this phrase in small bars.
Можно забронировать стол?
“Can I reserve a table?” A good one for places like the restaurant ‘Meatarea Chuck’, as it is very small but very popular. Be sure to act fast because it books out quickly!
До сколько вы работаете (открыты)?
“Until what time are you open? Is a phrase that you rarely need at restaurants but some bars are not opened till 6am in the morning so it could be helpful to ask.
End of the night out
Позовите официанта, пожалуйста
“Could you please get me the waiter?” A necessary phrase when you’re ready to start the journey home. Also useful if you want to order something else.
“It’s time to stop drinking”. This phrase is useful if you take medication, or simply if you don’t want to get too drunk. You can alter this phrase if you want to tell the barman to stop giving your friend alcohol. It’s changed to “Ему хватит”.
Мне больше не наливать
Translates to “I don’t need another drink”. It’s mostly used when talking to your friend and you simply don’t want to drink anymore.
Счёт, пожалуйста/Принесите счёт, пожалуйста
“Bill please” or put more formally, “Can I get the bill please?”.
Сдачи не над/Оставьте сдачу себе
Use the first phrase when you don’t want to keep the coins as change, (what can you buy with 10 kopkeks anyway?) It translates to “I don’t need the change”.
The second phrase is used to give the change as a tip to your waiter. It means, “The change is for you”.
In summary, use a few of these phrases and you’ll have the perfect night out. You’ll be able to communicate that much easier and you’ll be advancing your language skills whilst out and about.
On a side note, the word for drinking the morning after a long night out is “опохмелиться”. In English, they say “Hair of the dog”, whilst in Austria it’s “Reperaturseiterl”. Every culture has its own phrase for easing that hangover!