To take a break in Italian

How do you translate to take a break in Italian?

In this lesson, we’ll take a look at this very expression, also known as collocation, and even talk about the different kinds of breaks in Italian.

Let’s get started! Iniziamo!

To take a break in Italian

First of all, let’s translate to take a break in Italian.

Fare una pausa
To take a break

It’s interesting to learn that to take a break can also be translated as prendersi una pausa, which uses the reflexive verb prendersi, “to take oneself”. The two expressions are interchangeable, although prendersi una pausa is more colloquial.

Prendersi una pausa
To take (oneself) a break

man taking a break on his smartphone

To take a break in Italian – Let’s break it down!

Fare una pausa literally means to do a break.

To do, to make

Una pausa
A break

Sono stanco. Facciamo una pausa?
I’m tired. Shall we take a break?

Title: Italian All-in-One For Dummies
Language: English / Italian
Publisher: For Dummies
Pages: 672

Learn to speak Italian like a native? Easy.
Italian All-in-One For Dummies appeals to those readers looking for a comprehensive, all-encompassing guide to mastering the Italian language. It contains content from all For Dummies Italian language instruction titles, including Italian For Dummies, Intermediate Italian For Dummies, Italian Verbs For Dummies, Italian Phrases For Dummies, Italian Grammar For Dummies, and Italian For Dummies Audio Set.


Fare is a verb of the first -are group and it happens to be one of the most common verbs in the Italian language. Its indicativo presente conjugation is irregular and is as follows.

lui, leifa

It’s a common mistake even for some native speakers to say “voi facete”. It sounds so natural, doesn’t it? However, this is a BIG mistake. So remember: the correct conjugation is voi fate!

You will find fare in a huge number of expressions. Some of them are:

Fare una domanda
To ask a question

➡️ Learn how to pronounce to ask a question in Italian here!

Fare i compiti
To do the homework

➡️ Learn how to pronounce to do the homework in Italian here!

Fare presto/tardi
To be early/late

For example, you could say:

Posso farti una domanda?
Can I ask you a question?

Michela fa i compiti in autonomia.
Michela does her homework independently.

Ieri ho fatto tardi al lavoro.
I was late for work yesterday.

man running to work


We said that the translation of to take a break in Italian is fare una pausa. Pausa is a feminine noun.

Una pausa
A break

Delle pause
Some breaks

La pausa
The break

Le pause
The breaks

a cook taking a break

Some common breaks in Italian are:

Pausa caffè
Coffee break

Pausa estiva
Summer break

Pausa pranzo
Lunch break

For example, you can say…

Ora sono in pausa pranzo. Chiamami più tardi.
I am now on my lunch break. Call me later.

La pausa estiva dura quasi tre mesi.
The summer break lasts almost three months.

I miei colleghi fanno almeno una pausa caffè durante la giornata.
My colleagues take at least one coffee break during the day.

There is also the expression pausa di riflessione, which is translated into English as “time to reflect”:

Devo prendermi una pausa di riflessione. Ti farò sapere.
I need to take some time to reflect. I will let you know.

The pausa caffè is also known as pausa sigaretta, “cigarette break”. Do you take a cigarette break where you live?

coworker smoking outside

To take a break in Italian – Examples

Non farò alcuna pausa finché non avrò finito.
I will not take any break until I am finished.

Lorenza fa sempre una breve pausa verso le undici.
Lorenza always takes a short break around 11 o’clock.

Lavoro ininterrottamente da quasi otto ore. Devo fare una pausa.
I have been working continuously for almost eight hours. I need to take a break.

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