Italian Numbers 101 – How to Compare Them

Italian NumbersThe Italian Numbers – I Numeri Italiani

Comparing Italian numbers is important, especially when you are dealing with money. Here’s the first example:

In a bar you want to pay for the coffee you’ve just drunk and you hand to the barman 50 euro. (The price of coffee is just one euro…)

The barman asks you politely:

“Per cortesia, ha un euro?”
Please, do you have one euro?

And this is your reply:

“Mi spiace, non ho meno che 50 euro.”

Did you notice the error? Well, that’s not how you say “I’m sorry, I don’t have less than 50 euros” in Italian.

Although, when comparing two things, the English word “than” is sometimes translated to the italian word “che,”  when comparing numbers you must always use “di” instead of “che.” For example:

Non ho meno di 50 euro.
I don’t have less than 50 euro.

When you compare something else, 2 people for example, also use “di”:

Carlo è piu alto di Paolo.
Charles is taller than Paul.

The Italian word “che” (with the meaning of “than”) is used in some Italian ways of saying like:

É più unico che raro.
It’s one of a kind.

Writing Italian Numbers & Prices

By the way, in the sentence

Costa 7.500 euro” (It costs 7,500 euros)

Italian uses a period where English would use a comma in a number.

Italian also uses a comma where we would use a period in a number.

For example:

Il prezzo medio del caffè a Roma è 1,10 euro.
The average price or the coffee in Rome is 1.10 euros.”

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