Threw me off at first because "не надо" reminds me of the Spanish "de nada."
de nada means "you're welcome" in Duo's Spanish course. I'll have to try "it's nothing" next time I run across it there. If you reply to this comment, I'll get it in my email, and will be able to navigate back here - if you reply, just say "it's nothing" and I'll know what it's about. Otherwise, it's next to impossible to find comments I've made, which is irritating because often I want to correct them.
These are the rules that were taught to me:
If the 'o' becomes BEFORE the stressed syllable in the word it is pronounced as 'a'. If the 'o' has the stress on it it is pronounced as 'o'. If it comes AFTER the stressed syllable it is pronounced as 'uh'.
For example, хорошо has the stress on the last syllable so the first two o's are pronounced as an 'a'.
Although this would suggest that in спасибо the o is an 'uh' even though it indeed sounds like an 'a' :p. Not sure why that is .
I haven't bothered studying the rules very hard yet, but here is a chart for linguistics nerds: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_phonology#Vowels
Also, I've been using this when I'm curious how a word is pronounced, giving IPA: http://easypronunciation.com/en/russian-phonetic-transcription-converter
"Не за что (меня благодарить)" = literally "There is nothing to thank me for". This phrase is used ONLY after someone has thanked you.
— Спасибо за помощь! (Thanks for help!)
— Не за что. (Not at all / There is nothing to thank me for).
You can't use "не за что" when someone offers you a cup of coffee and you don't want coffee.
— Хотите кофе? (Do you want coffee?)
— Нет, спасибо / Спасибо, не надо. (No, thanks)
I am not positive, but one thing I think I noticed is to think of it this way...since I normally speak English, to Russians (who DON"T speak English) English sounds fast. So to English speakers hearing Russian (who don't normally speak Russian), Russian sounds fast. But then again I am definitely NOT an expert, so i am NOT sure about this!!!! :)
Well, I'm native Russian and speak both English and Russian. To me English is a bit faster than Russian. Maybe that's because English has a lot of short words, while Russian words usually are pretty long, so in one minute you can say more English words than Russian ones.
And yes, the languages that you cannot understand (or barely know) always seems to be faster. For example, Spanish seemed too fast when I started to learn it. Now I know some words and it seems to be pretty fast, but not as fast as earlier!
It is very normal, for me English was very fast in the beginning, and how can you see, I am redacting in spanish order xD. I took a russian course, and the teacher told us the russian speak so fast. And everypeople who come to here, says that spanish is very diferent than they learnt.
Well, if somebody asks you "Do you need a pen?" (Вам нужна ручка?), you can choose for the answer either "No, thanks" (literally Нет, спасибо) or "thanks, I don't need it" (Спасибо, не нужна / Спасибо, не надо). I think your phrase is pretty correct, because I can't imagine the context where it will sound wrong.
But "Нет, спасибо" sounds a bit strange for native Russian speakers. Usually we don't say like that, I don't know why. Maybe because "Нет" sounds a bit too strictly (people often look guilty when they say "no" in Russian, pretty strange mentality), and "спасибо" sounds gladly and pleased. So "Нет, спасибо" emotionally sounds like "No! >:( Awwwww, thanks! :-) ^_^"