Five Hebrew Mistakes To Avoid To Sound Like A Real Israeli

There are few mistakes that olim always do. Are you ready to get rid of them? Here are five little and annoying mistakes that you’ll never do AGAIN.

#1 Don’t use “Lifnei” ALL THE TIME!

How would you translate the sentence: I’ve lived in Israel for 3 years?

Most of olim would say: “אני גר  בישראל לפני 3 שנים”

BUT you should rather say: “אני גר בישראל שלוש שנים״” – if your sentence is in present tense, you don’t have to add anything!

#2 Know when to use “Be” and when to use “Le”

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All the movement verbs go with the preposition ‘lé” – not bé”, not “al”, not “etzel” – only “lé”

for instance, if you want to say that you’re going somewhere…

Most of olim would say: ani olekh be missada.

BUT you should rather say: ani olekh le missada. – For instance a taxi driver asks you: where are going? Tell him: ani tsarikh linsoa lé yerushalaim.

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#3 “Kshe” VS “Matai she”

Learn how to write and express yourself properly in Hebrew

Let’s take the following sentence: “When I go to the shouk, I take money”. Olim tend to translate “when” by the hebrew question word for when: “matai”. But when you have a sentence, not a question, you should use “kshe”.

Most of olim would say: “Matai she ani olekh la’shouk”

BUT you should rather say: “Kshe ani olekh la’shouk”

#4 Don’t make mistake when you say your age!

How old are you?

What do you usually answer when someone is asking you in Hebrew: how old are you? In English, you would say: I’m 20 years old. This is a sentence that you cannot translate to Hebrew. You have to adapt yourself and use the Hebrew formulation for this, that has nothing to do with your mother tongue…

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Most of olim would say: “יש לי 20 שנה”

BUT you should rather say: אני בן 20/אני בת “20”

#5 Don’t think there is only ONE SINGLE WAY to ask “How are you” in Hebrew!

Get used to the Israeli way to ask “How are you” in Hebrew

Last tip: you should know that there are planty of ways to ask “how are you “ in Hebrew/ Most olim will learn one of them and will be lost when Israelis will use other options…. It takes 3 minutes, and you will always understand when someone is asking you : how are you, in another way than “manishma”.

For instance you have all the following options: מה העיניינים ma ha’inianim, מה שלומך ma shlomkha, מה הולך ma olekh, איך הולך eikh olekh, איך אתה eikh ata, מה חדש ma khadash

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