Speak Russian like a Russian speaker

26 апреля 2021

Students of the Peoples' Friendship University of Russia, who have been living in Russia for several years, told MTS Media which Russian words are a must to learn first of all to blend in when you come to Russia.

Smart Rus: Learn Russian from the Pros

Khorosho (ok / well)

This is the same as "ok". It can be used both to agree with something (It’ok) and to clarify whether the interlocutor agrees with you (Is it ok with you?). This is also what you say when asked "Kak dela?" (How are you?).

Ladno (Agreed / ok)

Remember this word not to say only "da (yes)", "ok" and "khorosho (good)" in confirmation. Such small details are the best way to sound “Russian” and get closer to people.

Koneshno (Sure / of course)

This is another way to agree with someone, and a very energetic indeed. Use it when you have no idea what people are talking about, and it will look like you are fluent in Russian, or at least it will make everyone laugh.

Davai (Let’s / come on)

This is a strange Russian way of saying goodbye. "Davai" is placed before "Poka (stress on “a” – Bye)" or "Do svidania" (Goodbye). It is not clear what is suggested by this “Let’s / come on”, but often instead of the traditional words of farewell, Russians say: “Nu vsyo, davai (That’s it, come on)”.

Da net, navernoye (Yes no, probably)

I heard this expression from Russian friends even before I came to study in Russia. “Will you come to Italy in summer? “Da net navernoye, I have a lot of work.”

What on earth can it mean? Yes, no, or probably? But if you learn to pronounce it appropriately, you are almost a native speaker. People say that all the time, and in fact it means "most likely not, but I'm not sure about it."

Koroche (Shorter / to cut the long story short)

Russians like to start any story with this word, which does not mean that the story will really be short. "Koroche, I'm going home, and guess who I meet ...".

The same word can be used to stop some boring monologue: say “koroche” if you want the interlocutor to finally get to the point. It will sound a little harsh, but will be very effective.

Blin (translated as “Pancake” but actually a euphemism for a rude word)

Russians often use this word not meaning food. This is an interjection that can be used in very different situations to express emotions, especially if you are not ready to use Russian swear words. For example, if a hammer falls on your foot and you scream “Blin!”, everyone will know that you are polite enough not to use harsh words even when it hurts.

Polite words

You need to know all the polite words like "spasibo" (thank you), "pojalusta" (please/ welcome) and so on not just to be nice. The truth is that Russian people are very happy when you try to speak to them in their language. Even if you know only the basic polite words, they become very friendly and helpful when they hear how you suffer trying to pronounce "zdravst-vui-te" (hello).

Learning Russian is not easy, but it can be a lot of fun, especially if you study online with the best teachers.

Smart Rus: Learn Russian from the Pros