Time L'Orario

  1. In Italy as in most of Europe, time is based on the 24 hour day and not on the 12 hour clock. Thus, 1 PM is expressed as 13:00, 5:30 PM as 17:30, etc. That means an appointment or invitation for 19:30 is meant for 7:30 PM
  2. To inquire or speak about time, you should learn these expressions: Scusi, sa che ora sono?/Excuse me, do you know what time it is? A che ora [comincia il film]?/At what time [does the movie start]?
  3. Other useful expressions to indicate how frequently an action occurs include: a volte/sometimes; due volte al giorno/twice a day; tutti i giorni/every day; and ogni tanto/from time to time.

 Scusi, che ora sono? =  know what time is it?

 A che ora comincia il film? = what time the movie begin? 

  1. mezzogiorno (noon), mezzanotte (midnight), or l'una (one o'clock).
  2. For all other times, the answer to What time is it? is expressed in Italian by Sono le + number of the hour.
  3. Fractions of an hour are expressed by e + minutes elapsed. From the half hour to the next hour, time can also be expressed by giving the next hour meno (minus) the number of minutes before the coming hour.
  4. Un quarto (A quarter) and mezzo (a half) often replace quindici and trenta. Un quarto d'ora and mezz'ora mean a quarter of an hour and half an hour.
  5. To indicate AM add di mattina or la mattina to the hour; to indicate PM, add del pomeriggio (12 Noon to 5 PM), di sera or la sera(5 PM to midnight), or di notte or la notte(midnight to early morning) to the hour.


Che ora sono?  E` mezzogiorno

2:45 = Sono le tre meno un quarto  

2:15 = Sono le due e un quarto di mattina