Today’s phrase is one you’ll end up using all the time when you are in Italy, especially once you start making friends.
Come on, let’s go!
Learn with our video
Dai is an interjection in Italian that means Come on! It’s formed from the preposition da and the article i. The first time I heard it, I admit that, as an English speaker, I mistakenly thought the other person (who just happened to be a little boy I was babysitting) was telling me to Die! It was a good thing the mother stepped in before I took offence!
Andiamo is the first-person plural form of the verb andare (to go). When used in a neutral sentence, it simply means we go but when used as an imperative to make a suggestion, it translates as Let’s go! Compare the following two sentences:
- Andiamo al cinema ogni sabato sera. = We go to the cinema every Saturday evening.
- Andiamo al cinema stasera! = Let’s go to the cinema this evening!
Here are a couple of additional example sentences where Dai, andiamo! is used:
Dai, andiamo fuori a mangiare qualcosa. Ho fame!
Come on, let’s go out and eat something. I’m hungry!
Dai, andiamo a casa. Sono stanco morto.
Come on, let’s go home. I’m so tired.
Did you know…?
In the Romanesco dialect, andiamo becomes the annamo (or the shorted ‘nnamo). The reason I’m mentioning this variation is because, even though it was born in Rome, it is used across much of Italy. In the Piedmont region where my husband is from, on the other hand, you will hear the dialectal form anduma.
You can also use this phrase to tell someone to hurry up because you’re in a rush or simply because they are slow. You can include the interjection su to add extra emphasis.
Dai su, andiamo che siamo già in ritardo! La nonna ci sta aspettando!
Come on, let’s go, we’re already late! Grandma is waiting for us!