Do you know how to say ‘hello’ and ‘bye’ in Italian? If so, it is the right time for you to learn how to say good night in Italian. Using good night phrases is the perfect strategy to part ways with your friend for the evening.

The words and phrases in this post are essential for Italian learners. You will hear them all the time, and you will realize they are an essential part of Italian polite conversation.

There are numerous opportunities to practice these words. Simply immersing yourself in Italian will help you learn these words and phrases until they become second nature. You can, for example, listen to Italian podcasts, radio shows, or news clips, where hosts are likely to say “good evening” or “good night” when they sign on or off.

First, we will go over the fundamentals of saying good night in Italian. Here are some key phrases to keep in your vocabulary list.

Buona note

Buona notte (good night) is the most common way to say good night in Italian. It can be used in both formal and informal settings, making it a useful phrase to know in almost any situation.

Buona notte is used in the same way that it is used in English when the speaker is going to bed or seeing someone for the last time that day.

Buona serata

Buona serata literally translates to “good evening.” Like in English, Italian speakers typically use this phrase when they are saying their final goodbyes to someone that day. The primary distinction between buona notte and buona serata is that the former is used during traditional bedtime hours, whereas the latter is spoken earlier in the evening.

Sogni d’oro

You can use sogni d’oro to add an extra flourish to your good night wishes. This phrase literally translates to “golden dreams,” and is the Italian equivalent of “sweet dreams.”

It is a sweet way to wish a loved one a restful night’s sleep. Keep in mind, however, that sogni d’oro is typically reserved for informal settings.

If you are an Italian learner, getting a command of Italian greetings will let you develop fluency in the language.

Dorma/dormi bene

When someone is going to bed, you can use dormi bene or dorma bene depending on who you’re talking to. This phrase means “to sleep well.”

Use the tu form in an informal setting, such as a conversation with a friend or family member (dormi bene). In a more formal setting, the Lei form would be appropriate (dorma bene).

You can also add up phrases like saying I love you in Italian accompanied with an informal phrase saying good night in Italian.  

Now that we know different phrases to say good night in Italian, let’s find out the right time to use these phrases and expressions.

It is critical to know the proper timing for each phrase if you want to wish someone good night like a native Italian speaker. After all, leaving someone with a buona notte when it’s only 4:00 p.m. might cause some confusion.

Fortunately, there are a few simple steps you can take to ensure that you use the appropriate greetings and parting phrases for the time of day. Keep these pointers in mind before striking up a conversation with an Italian speaker late at night.

Entering vs. Leaving

One important rule to remember is that buona notte and buona serata are only used when parting ways with someone. If you are meeting a friend at an evening event, you would greet them with buona sera (good evening).

When the night is done and you know you won’t see your friend again for the rest of the night, it is safe to bid them a friendly buona serata or buona notte.

Choosing the right greeting

You might be surprised to learn that the terms “evening” and “night” do not always mean the same thing in Italy as they do in your home country. Most Italians start greeting each other with buona sera or leaving each other with buona serata after 4:00 p.m. because this is when most people finish work.

Buona notte, on the other hand, is more commonly heard around 10:00 p.m. or later, as people get ready to sleep.

Keep your audience in mind while saying good night in Italian

Being aware of your audience is an important aspect of saying good night in Italian. In Italian, as in English, the type of person you are speaking to has a direct impact on how you address them.

 As you are probably aware, there are formal and informal ways of saying “you” in Italian. There are also different words for “you” in Italian depending on whether you are speaking to one person or multiple people.

Although a phrase like buona notte does not include any pronouns, you should modify it slightly depending on the formality of the situation and the number of people:

  • In an informal setting, such as speaking to a group of friends, you can say “buona notte, amici miei.” (Good evening, my friends.)
  • When saying good night to a superior or someone in a formal setting, use “buona notte, signore/signora” to add a more dignified tone. (Good evening, Sir/Ma’am.)
  • In most situations where you’re addressing a group of two or more people, the phrase “buona notte a tutti” is a safe bet. (Good evening, everyone.)

When saying good night in Italian, knowing the difference between formal and informal phrasing and applying it to the situation will allow you to converse more effectively. You can learn Italian online with italki to know the difference between formal and informal phrases. The Italian teachers online will let you converse freely without making any errors or mistakes. Book your lessons today!

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Now let us explore some of the basic vocabulary words related to bedtime and sleep in Italian.

1. Dormire (to sleep)

Non ho dormito bene la notte scorsa. (I didn’t sleep well last night.)

2. Addormentarsi (to fall asleep)

Mi piace leggere prima di addormentarmi. (I like to read before falling asleep.)

3. Sognare (to dream)

Lui ha sognato di essere famoso. (He had a dream about being famous.)

4. Svegliarsi (to wake up)

Noi dobbiamo svegliarci presto domani. (We have to wake up early tomorrow.)

Some helpful nouns:

1. Il letto (the bed)

Questo letto è molto comodo. (This bed is very comfortable.)

2. Il lenzuolo (the bed sheet)

Ho lavato tutte le lenzuola ieri. (I washed all the sheets yesterday.)

3. Il cuscino (the pillow)

Lei sta sprimacciando i cuscini. (She’s fluffing the pillows.)

4. Il sogno (the dream)

Il bambino ha fatto un brutto sogno la notte scorsa. (The child had a bad dream last night.)

These key nouns and verbs will help you better understand how to say good night in Italian. You might hear a parent say to their child, “ora di andare a letto.” (It’s time to go to sleep). You can also conjugate the above verbs to tell people how you slept or to inquire about how others slept.


When learning Italian, knowing how to wish someone a good night in Italian can help you get a long way. These useful additions to your Italian vocabulary toolbox are just what you need to expand your understanding of the language, whether you are saying goodbye to a group of friends at the end of a dinner party or informing your roommate that you are going to bed.

Some easiest ways to learn Italian include getting immersed in Italian media, podcasts, books, and other content materials. Try watching native speakers will let you learn small details about the language, especially Italian pronunciation.

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