How To Apologize In Turkish: 5 Useful Phrases You Must Know

how to apologize in turkish

Did you do something wrong and want to make it up? Learn how to apologize in Turkish!

Have you ever needed to apologize in a foreign language that you’re not fluent in? It can be a tough situation for you because there are many phrases to say sorry in Turkish but you have to find the right one for your situation.

I think speaking Turkish gives you more freedom compared to English when you’re talking about your feelings. Not surprisingly, there are more ways to say sorry in Turkish than there are in English.

If you’re ready, let’s learn how to apologize in Turkish! (I hope you won’t need it though!)

Page Contents:


Why Should You Learn To Say Sorry In Turkish?

Learning a new language is all about socializing with other people and cultures. No one is perfect and sometimes we may hurt people unintentionally. However, you must realize your mistake later and apologize sincerely. Then I’m sure you’ll be forgiven.

If you don’t apologize at all, it could damage your perception in the eyes of the other person. Not to mention it is very rude. So, when it comes to Turkish, you should also know how to apologize. It’s an important value in Turkish culture.


How To Apologize In Turkish?

a kid holding a sorry card

There are five common ways to apologize in Turkish and they differ in the context they’re used. For example, one phrase is used for minor mistakes while the other phrase is used in a more serious situation.

1. Özür dilerim – I apologize

[Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Özür dilerim[/Speechword]

This is the most commonly used phrase to apologize. You can use this phrase when you’ve done something wrong but then realize you shouldn’t have done that. After saying “özür dilerim” you’re expected not to repeat your mistake again.

It is a common and neutral phrase, Turkish people say it for both small and serious things. So, it’s up to the context.


  • Kalemini kaybettiğim için özür dilerim. (I apologize for losing your pencil.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Kalemini kaybettiğim için özür dilerim[/Speechword]
  • Özür dilerim, seni incitmek istemedim. (I apologize, I didn’t mean to hurt you.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Özür dilerim, seni incitmek istemedim[/Speechword]

2. Üzgünüm – I’m sorry

[Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Üzgünüm[/Speechword]

This word literally translates as “I’m sorry” in English. Though English speakers use this phrase to apologize for something, Turkish speakers use this phrase to express that they’re feeling sad or upset. So it’s not really the best choice to apologize for something serious.


  • Geciktiğim için üzgünüm. (I’m sorry for being late.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Geciktiğim için üzgünüm[/Speechword]
  • Üzgünüm, dün seni arayamadım. (I’m sorry, I couldn’t call you yesterday.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Üzgünüm, dün seni arayamadım[/Speechword]

3. Öyle demek istemedim – I didn’t mean that

[Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Öyle demek istemedim[/Speechword]

You can use this phrase when you accidentally say something offensive and want to take it back. But I don’t think it is convincing enough because what is done is done, right?


  • Bence daha az yemelisin. (I think you should eat less.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Bence daha az yemelisin[/Speechword]
  • Sen bana şişman mı diyorsun? (Are you calling me fat?)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Sen bana şişman mı diyorsun[/Speechword]
  • Hayır tabi ki, öyle demek istemedim. (Of course not, I didn’t mean that.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Hayır tabi ki, öyle demek istemedim[/Speechword]

4. Kusura bakma – Sorry/Pardon me

[Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Kusura bakma[/Speechword]

You can say “kusura bakma” for small mistakes such as bumping into someone on the street or being late to a friend’s meeting. There is no corresponding phrase for it in English but I think it would be a mix of the meanings of sorry and pardon me.

It is an informal and casual phrase so be careful where and to whom you say it!


  • Neden yemiyorsun? (Why don’t you eat?)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Neden yemiyorsun[/Speechword]
  • Kusura bakma, aç değilim. (Sorry, I’m not hungry.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Kusura bakma, aç değilim[/Speechword]

5. Lütfen beni affet – Please forgive me

[Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Lütfen beni affet[/Speechword]

Well, you must have done something really really bad to apologize with this phrase. Because it has a meaning like you’re begging to be forgiven. It is an intense phrase so don’t use it for small mistakes.


  • Beni aldattığını biliyorum. (I know you’ve cheated on me.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Beni aldattığını biliyorum[/Speechword]
  • Lütfen beni affet! Tekrar yapmayacağım. (Please forgive me! I won’t do it again.)
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]Lütfen beni affet! Tekrar yapmayacağım[/Speechword]


Other Turkish Phrases To Say Sorry

Here is the list of other Turkish words and phrases you can use:

  • afedersiniz – excuse me
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]afedersiniz[/Speechword]
  • affetmek – to forgive
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]affetmek[/Speechword]
  • telafi etmek – to make up for something
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]telafi etmek[/Speechword]
  • pardon – excuse me
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]pardon[/Speechword]
  • benim hatam – my bad
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]benim hatam[/Speechword]
  • benim suçum – it’s my fault
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]benim suçum[/Speechword]
  • o bir hataydı – it was a mistake
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]o bir hataydı [/Speechword]
  • tekrar yapmayacağım – I won’t do it again
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]tekrar yapmayacağım [/Speechword]
  • seni kırmak istememiştim – I didn’t mean to hurt you
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]seni kırmak istememiştim[/Speechword]
  • kalp kırıklığı – heartbreak
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]kalp kırıklığı[/Speechword]
  • kalbimi kırdın – you broke my heart
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]kalbimi kırdın[/Speechword]
  • benim yüzümden oldu – it happened because of me
  • [Speechword voice=”Turkish Female” isinline]benim yüzümden oldu[/Speechword]

Do you want to learn more than just apologies in Turkish? Then check out the Ling App right now!


Learn Turkish With Ling App!

If you want to learn the Turkish language or other foreign languages, waste no more time and check out the Ling App to start learning something new today!

Learn Turkish With Ling App

Ling is a language learning app designed to help all language learners passionate about learning a new language. Ling App consists of various interactive exercises, such as writing and listening exercises, mini quizzes, and an AI chatbot to practice your speaking skills. The Ling App offers you everything to enhance the four primary language skills.

Also, remember to go to Ling’s Turkish blog for weekly new articles about learning Turkish and its culture!

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Until next time! Görüşürüz!

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