English to German Language Lesson: Shopping Vocabulary and Phrases

A woman reads the label of a jar while shopping in a grocery store
Betsie Van Der Meer/Getty Images

When you go shopping in Germany, Austria, or German Switzerland, you'll find a number of German words very useful. This lesson includes the basic vocabulary you need to find the stores you're looking for, talk to the salesperson, and have an enjoyable shopping spree.

Shopping Phrases and Pronunciation

There are a number of sentences and phrases that you are likely to encounter when shopping in a German-speaking country. From asking the price of an item to completing your transaction, this vocabulary list should cover most of the basics.

To give you a jump on your studies, the phonetic pronunciations for many of the trickier German words are included. They are only an approximate guide but will help you out considerably, especially if you're just beginning to learn German.

When entering a smaller German shop, it is customary to exchange hellos with the shopkeeper or sales clerk. Also, when leaving a shop in Austria or Germany, it is common for the customer and shopkeeper to exchange goodbyes.

If you travel to Germany at the right time of year, you might be able to get in on one of the two biggest sales many stores offer. The Sommerschlussverkauf happens in late summer and the Winterschlussverkauf typically occurs towards the end of winter.

Englisch Deutsch
salesperson Verkäufer/in
customer der Kunde m.
die Kundin f.
cashier / check-out counter die Kasse (dee KA-suh)
Sale!
Special Offer!
Reduced!
Ausverkauf!
Sonderangebot!
Reduziert!
Hello! Guten Tag!
Grüß Gott! (Austria/Bavaria)
May I help you? Was darf es sein?
Darf ich Ihnen helfen?
I'm looking for...
...a dress
...a shirt
...athletic shoes
...a postcard
Ich suche...
...ein Kleid (eye-n KLITE)
...ein Hemd (eye-n HEMT)
...Sportschuhe (SHPORT SHOO-a)
...eine Postkarte (eye-na POST-KAR-ta)
I'm just looking. Ich sehe mich nur ein wenig um.
Ich schau nur ein bisschen herum.
I'd like... Ich möchte... (eech MURG-ta)
Can you fix/repair this? Können Sie das reparieren? (KURN-en zee das REP-ah-rear-en)
What size are you? Welche Größe haben Sie?
Do you have it in a different color? Haben Sie das in einer anderen Farbe?
May I try it on? Darf ich es/ihn/sie anprobieren? (das/der/die)
It's too big/small. Das ist mir zu groß/klein.
How much is it? - How much does it cost? Wie viel kostet es? (er/sie) (VEE feel KOST-et es)
That's too expensive. Das ist zu teuer.
Do you take credit cards? Nehmen Sie Kreditkarten? (NAME-en zee kred-DIT-kar-ten)
I'll take it. Ich nehme es (ihn, sie). (ich NAY-muh es [een, zee])
Is this intended as a gift? Soll das ein Geschenk sein?
Can I get this gift-wrapped? Kann ich das als Geschenk eingepackt bekommen?
Goodbye! Wiederseh'n! (VEE-der zane)
auf Wiedersehen! (owf VEE-der zay-en)

English-German Glossary for Stores and Shops 

You will also find it useful to familiarize yourself with the various types of businesses (Geschäfte) and stores or shops (Läden) you may want to visit. Many of the most common are included in this next vocabulary list along with the items or services they offer.

Tip: For related vocabulary, do a Google.de or Yahoo.de search for the category you want to explore. For instance, to find the vocabulary for pastry or pastry shops, use the term Konditorei to find online sources of vocabulary (and pastries). A few other helpful examples and tips are located within the list.

Noun genders: r (der, masc.), e (die, fem.), s (das, neu.)
Abbreviations: adj. (adjective), Br. (British), n. (noun), pl. (plural), v. (verb)

English Deutsch What They Sell
antique store s Antiquitätengeschäft Antiquitäten pl.
appliance store s Elektrogeschäft Elektrogeräte
auto dealer/dealership
car sales/dealership
r Autohändler
e Autohandlung
s Autohaus
Autos
auto mechanic
auto repair/garage
r Automechaniker
e Autowerkstatt
Autoreparaturen
bakery e Bäckerei Brot, Brötchen
bar, pub e Kneipe alkoholische Getränke
barber (shop) r Herrenfriseur e Herrenfrisur
beauty salon, parlor r Damenfriseur e Damenfrisur (hair-do)
bookstore, bookshop e Buchhandlung Bücher pl.
business, store, shop s Geschäft, r Laden --
butcher shop e Fleischerei
e Metzgerei
s Fleisch
candy store, confectionery r Süßwarenladen Süßwaren
car hire/auto rental r Autoverleih
e Autovermietung
Autovermietung
clothier
clothing store
r Herrenausstatter (men)
r Modesalon (ladies)
e Kleidung
computer store s Computergeschäft
r Computerladen
Computer, Rechner
dairy store s Milchgeschäft e Milch, r Käse
delicatessen s Feinkostgeschäft r Feinkost
department store s Kaufhaus
s Warenhaus
fast alles
drugstore e Drogerie Toilettenartikel pl. (Note: A German Drogerie does not sell drugs or medicine. You can only buy toiletries and other non-drug items. For medicine (even just aspirin) you have to go to an Apotheke (pharmacy).
dry cleaner e Reiningung, chemische Reinigung Kleider reinigen
electrical store s Elektrogeschäft Elektrogeräte
florist s Blumengeschäft Blumen
furniture store s Einrichtungshaus
s Möbellager
r Hausrat
Möbel pl
gift shop r Geschenkladen
Geschenke (sign)
Geschenke
grocery store s Lebensmittelgeschäft Lebensmittel
hardware store s Eisenwarengeschäft Eisenwaren
health food store s Reformhaus
Also see "organic food store"
Biokost/Lebensmittel
Heilkräuter
jeweler, jewelry store r Juwelier Ringe, Schmucksachen
laundromat, laundrette r Waschsalon Kleider waschen
laundry (firm) e Wäscherei Kleider waschen
mail order store r Versand, s Versandkaufhaus fast alles
market r Markt fast alles
newsstand r Kiosk Zeitschriften, Zeitungen
office supplies store r Bürobedarfladen Bürobedarf, Büroausstattung
online store
online shop
s Onlinegeschäft
r Onlineshop
fast alles
optician r Optiker Augengläser, Brillen
organic food store
(wholefood shop)
r Bioladen
s Reformhaus
Biokost/Lebensmittel
Heilkräuter
pastry shop e Konditorei s Gebäck
pet store, pet shop e Zoohandlung Haustiere, Tierbedarf
pharmacy/chemist e Apotheke Medikamente
photo shop s Fotogeschäft Film, Kameras
rent-a-car/auto rental r Autoverleih
e Autovermietung
Autovermietung
restaurant s Restaurant s Essen
second-hand bookstore
used-books store
s Antiquariat antiquarische Bücher
shoe store s Schuhgeschäft Schuhe
shop, store, business r Laden, s Geschäft --
shopping center/mall s Einkaufszentrum --
souvenir shop r Andenkenladen
r Souvenirladen
s Andenken, s Souvenir
sporting goods store s Sportgeschäft Sportausrüstungen
stationery store s Schreibwarengeschäft Papier, Schreibwaren
supermarket r Supermarkt fast alles
tobacco shop
tobacconist
r Tabakwarenladen
e Trafik (Austria)
Zigaretten, Tabakwaren
toy store s Spielwarengeschäft Spielwaren, Spielzeuge
watch repair shop r Uhrmacher Uhren reparieren