A proven way of catching someone’s attention is by flirting (flirtare). In other words, you make it clear using words and body language that you are interested in someone and think that they are attractive.
In many ways, flirting in Italian is no different to flirting in English. The important thing is to be confident and subtle and to avoid sounding too aggressive or forward since that might have the opposite effect!
If you’re keen on learning how to flirt in Italian, a good place to start is with these ten flirty phrases. Some are useful if you are trying to get to know someone better, whereas others are meant for those already in a relationship. Good luck (In bocca al lupo)! ❤️
Did you know that…?
The verb flirtare comes from the English word flirt, which has entered the Italian lexicon and is used with the English pronunciation. Consequentially, the first part of the verb flirtare is pronounced in the English way too: /flerˈtare/.
A man who acts in a flirtatious manner is called a cascamorto (lit: cascare morto = to fall dead) in Italian, whereas a flirtatious woman is called a civetta (owl). Be careful however because civetta can also have a negative connotation.
1. Posso avere il tuo numero di telefono?
English translation: Can I have your number?
Even though we are living (and dating) in the digital age, asking for someone’s number hasn’t gotten old. In fact, now that almost everyone has a smartphone, it has become easier than ever before to call someone you like!
Of course, many people prefer to contact each other using social networks like Facebook and Instagram these days, in which case you’d say:
- Posso aggiungerti su Facebook / Instagram? = Can I add you on Facebook / Instagram?
- Posso chiederti l’amicizia su Facebook? = Can I add you on Facebook? (lit. Can I ask for your friendship on Facebook)
2. Qualcuno ti ha mai detto che…?
English translation: Has anyone ever told you that…?
This phrase is the perfect introduction to any compliment in Italian. Below are a few ideas for finishing the sentence!
- …sei bellissimo / bellissima? (…you are handsome / beautiful?)
- …hai degli occhi stupendi? (…you have beautiful eyes?)
- …hai un sorriso meraviglioso? (…you have a gorgeous smile?)
Qualcuno ti ha mai detto che hai un sorriso meraviglioso?
Has anyone ever told you that you have a gorgeous smile?
3. Come è possibile che tu sia ancora single?
English translation: How are you still single?
This phrase can sound flirty if said by a man to a woman he’s clearly interested in or vice versa, but it’s probably the last thing you want to hear from your mother or busybody aunt Maria! 😉
If you want to take it a step further, you could add:
- Non ci credo, un/una ragazzo/a bello/a come te! = I can’t believe it, a beautiful man/girl like you.
Did you know…?
Single is another word borrowed from English and pronounced in the English way.
4. Voglio rimanere con te per sempre!
English translation: I want to stay with you forever!
This phrase should only be used once you’re in a stable relationship with someone, and are pretty sure he or she returns your intense feelings!
Variations include Voglio stare… (I want to stay…) or Voglio essere… (I want to be…).
5. Ho una cotta per te!
English translation: I have a crush on you!
This is a popular phrase among school kids who are just beginning to navigate the world of romantic relationships. Ah, young love!
Another way of saying this is mi piaci (I like you), with the following variations:
- Mi piaci un casino (casino means mess, chaos but in this context it means a lot)
- Mi piaci una cifra (cifra means digit, figure, but also style. It’s a slang phrase.)
- Mi piaci davvero tanto (davvero tanto = really a lot)
- Mi piaci da morire (da morire means to death)
6. Stai frequentando qualcuno?
English translation: Are you seeing someone?
If you want to put out the feelers to see if your beloved is interested in you, you can always ask if they are seeing someone rather than directly asking them out on a date.
Below are some alternative phrases. Be careful not to come across as too aggressive though! 😉
- Ti stai vedendo con qualcuno? = Are you seeing someone?
- Stai uscendo con qualcuno? = Are you going out with someone?
- Stai con qualcuno? = Are you with someone?
- C’è qualcuno che ti piace? = Is there someone you like?
Perhaps a more polite and less intrusive way of posing this question is:
C’è qualcuno di speciale nella tua vita in questo momento?
Is there someone special in your life at the moment?
7. Siamo fatti l’uno per l’altra!
English translation: We are meant for each other!
If you are convinced that you and your partner are meant to be together forever, this is the phrase for you. (Oh, and it also works as a good lead-in to a marriage proposal!)
If you feel particularly romantic, you can say: Sei la mia anima gemella! (You’re my soulmate!).
8. Penso che mi sto innamorando di te.
English translation: I think I’m falling for you.
Telling someone that you love them is a big step in any relationship! Instead of using the classic phrase ti amo (I love you), why not try this alternative? And here are a few more:
- Mi sto innamorando di te. = I’m falling in love with you.
- Mi sono innamorato/a di te il primo giorno che ti ho visto/a. = I fell in love with you the first day I met you.
- Mi sto prendendo una cotta per te. = I’m developing a crush on you.
9. Ti piacerebbe uscire a cena con me?
English translation: Would you like to go out to dinner with me?
Asking your crush out on an official date is a great way of getting to know him or her better. Dinner (cena) is the traditional choice but there’s nothing wrong with asking them out to lunch (pranzo) or a movie (un film) instead.
Here are some other phrases that can be useful:
- Mi farebbe molto piacere portarti a cena fuori. = I would like to take you out for dinner very much.
- Verresti al cinema con me? – Would you come to the movies with me?
- Sei libero/a sabato prossimo? Potremmo pranzare insieme. = Are you free next Saturday? We could have lunch together.
10. Non riesco a smettere di pensare a te.
English translation: I can’t stop thinking about you.
If you’ve just started seeing someone, or have developed a crush on someone, you might find yourself daydreaming about them when they aren’t around. This phrase is a great way of letting your sweetheart know that they are always on your mind!
Other ways of saying the same thing are:
- Sei sempre nei miei pensieri. = You’re always on my mind.
- Non riesco a toglierti dalla testa. = I can’t get you out of my head.
- Ti penso sempre, giorno e notte. = I think about you all the time, day and night.