Top 10 most common Russian expressions (2024)

Top 10 most common Russian expressions (1)

By Frédéric Ibanez,

International Business

Are you learning Russian and want to know the most popular sayings? Here is a list of the 10 most common Russian expressions used in everyday life.

  1. Expressing surprise: Серьёзно?

This Russian expression can literally be translated as Seriously?

It is used to express astonishment or surprise at a situation or a statement.

  1. Ask permission: можно

This term is used very frequently in Russia. It is used to ask someone for permission, for example, if you have to make your way through a crowd of people. It can be translated as may I? (Or may you?) So, it is a very useful polite term to be aware of.

  1. To say "Okay" in Russian: Хорошо

This Russian word, which can be translated as okay or agree, is used in everyday life in Russia. It is therefore a very useful Russian word if you want to agree, respond positively to a question, or simply confirm to the other person that you understand what they are saying.

  1. To express happiness in Russian: Круто!

This popular Russian saying is used to express enthusiasm and happiness. For example, after receiving good news, you could say: Круто! You can also use the similarly meaningful expression здорово! These phrases are translated as great! Or super!

  1. "No problem" in Russian: Базара нет/Без базара

This very common Russian expression literally translates as "no mess". It is therefore a way of expressing agreement (of saying that you are fine with something).

  1. Ask for the bill: счет пожалуйста

This is essential if you are planning to visit Russia. It will allow you to simply ask for the bill in a restaurant.

  1. To call someone: "молодой человек!"/"молодой девушка!"

This Russian expression will be useful if you want to address a young adult for example in the street, to call a waiter in a restaurant, or an employee in a shop ... The expression молодой человек means Young man! And молодой девушка means Young woman!

  1. Ты с ума сошёл?

Is the person you are talking to behaving irrationally? To make this clear, you can use this Russian expression, which literally means: "You have come down from your spirit.”

  1. Expressing disappointment: Это ужасно!

If you are disappointed by something, or want to explain how bad a situation is, you can use this common Russian expression. It literally translates as It's horrible! There is another expression with a similar meaning: это кошмар! This means: this is a nightmare!

  1. Express disbelief: Ей-Богу!

If you want to express your disbelief in Russian, this common expression will be very useful.

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FAQ on the most common Russian expressions

In Russian, to use negation, the word Нет is used. It is also possible to say ‘No’ more informally with, Не/не-а. If you want to answer "No thank you", you should say Нет, спасибо.

To say goodbye to someone in Russian, there are several expressions you can use. Here are some of them: До свидания: goodbye / Пока: bye / До скорого: see you soon.

To thank someone in Russian, you should use the word спасибо. The person you are talking to will then reply with Пожалуйста or Не за что (You're welcome).

About the author

Frédéric Ibanez

The editorial team, which is led by the founder of the group to which Alphatrad UK belongs, consists of experts who specialise in language services. Our goal is to regularly provide you with articles related to translation and language services, which will help you with your language services’ needs.

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