Politeness and manners are important in German, just as they are in English. But do German speakers use the word ‘please’ correctly when speaking English?

Germans use ‘bitte‘ as we use the word ‘please’ to ask for something politely, but German uses ‘bitte‘ in three other main ways, all of which translate differently into English.

Danke schön! Bitte schön!

When someone says ‘thank you’, you can say: “you’re welcome!”

Wie bitte?

When you haven’t heard what someone has said, you can say: “sorry?”

Ein Bier? Bitte schön!

When you give something to someone, you can say: “here you are!”

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