What time is it? At what time we are going to meet? After having studied this chapter, you will be able to answer those questions! Before explaining you how you can tell the time in German, I will show you some general expressions you should study as well!
There are different ways to ask for the time in German, it does not matter which of the following phrases you will use!
In the following list, you will find the key words in order to be able to tell the time.
|Its is...||Es ist...|
There are different ways how to tell the time in German.
When it is a full hour, we are using the same construction as in English: Es ist XY Uhr (=It is XY o'clock)
For 3:22AM, in English you would say: It’s three twenty-two. In German, the phrase differs a bit: Between the hours and the minutes, you have to put "Uhr". Following, for 3:22AM, in English you would say: Es ist drei Uhr zweiundzwanzig.
|1.11AM||Es ist ein Uhr elf|
|3.03AM||Es ist drei Uhr drei|
|5.54AM||Es ist fünf Uhr vierundfünfzig|
|9.28AM||Es ist neun Uhr achtundzwanzig|
"To" is translated with "vor", "past" is translated with "nach".
Using this construction, you say the minutes first.The construction is exactly the same as in English.
|9:05AM||Es ist fünf nach neun|
|11.20AM||Es ist zwanzig nach elf|
|5.11AM||Es ist elf nach fünf|
|7.40AM||Es ist zwanzig vor acht|
|10.50AM||Es ist zehn vor elf|
|6.55AM||Es ist fünf for sieben|
|6.45AM||Es ist Viertel vor sieben|
|9.15AM||Es ist Viertel nach neun|
|8.30AM||Es ist halb neun|
|10.15AM||Es ist Viertel nach zehn|
|3.45AM||Es ist Viertel vor vier|
|1.30AM||Es ist halb zwei|
In Germany, unlike in many other countries, we are not using AM and PM to differ between morning and evening. Instead, we are using the 24 hour system. Sometimes, more often in casual conversations, we also use the 12-hour system.
|5PM||Es ist 17 (siebzehn) Uhr|
|1PM||Es ist 13 (dreizehn) Uhr|
|11PM||Es ist 23 (dreiundzwanzig) Uhr|
|8PM||Es ist 20 (zwanzig) Uhr|
"Viertel" and "halb" as well as "to" and "past" are not used with the 24 hour system.
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