How do you say ARE YOU HUNGRY in Italian?

Are you hungry in Italian

Singular: Hai fame?

Hai fame? is how you say are you hungry in Italian when you are addressing only one person you are on familiar terms with and know well, such as your best friend, a relative or even your pet.

Hai fame?
Are you hungry?
(singular, informal)

hungry cat wishing for a bowl of dried food

You can’t translate to be hungry literally, because Italian uses a noun (hunger) and a different verb (to have)!

Hai fame, Veronica? Ti preparo un panino.
Are you hungry, Veronica? I’ll make you a sandwich.

Hai fame, micione?
Are you hungry, big kitty cat?

➡️ How can “micione” mean big kitty cat? Learn the descriptive Italian suffixes here!

a pink bag of cat food

Plural: Avete fame?

Avete fame? is the translation for are you hungry in Italian when you are addressing more than one person.

Avete fame?
Are you hungry?
(plural)

Italian has two kinds of “you”, unlike English. There’s a singular “you” and then there’s a plural “you”. If you are addressing a group, you will need to conjugate any verb or pronoun accordingly.

Look at the conjugation table again. The subject pronoun for the second person plural is voi, and its avere verb conjugation is avete.

Avete fame, bambini? Venite, vi preparo la merenda!
Are you hungry, children? Come, I’ll make you a snack!

three people waiting to eat around a circular table

Formal: Ha fame?

If you are just visiting Italy and often meet new people, unless you both agree on using the informal pronoun tu you will have to stick to the polite pronoun Lei when talking to other adults and people you are not on familiar terms with. With kids, it’s customary to use tu, no matter the degree of familiarity.

This is the equivalent of she in English. Basically, when speaking formally, Italians address each other with the subject “she”, lei.

That said, how do you formally say are you hungry in Italian?

Ha fame?
Are you hungry?
(singular, polite)

I wouldn’t use this form though, as it can still sound a bit informal. The polite way of addressing more than one person uses voi, the same pronoun used in informal situations.


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