There are phrases and questions that you consistently need to know in order to interact with locals from different countries. These help in making your travel experience easier and you get to learn a little bit of the language too!
Before you indulge yourself in travels and tours, study abroad and other travel experience, bear in mind that words like Please, Thank You, Excuse Me, and numbers 1-10 are important in virtually any travel situation — learn those first. Furthermore, there are a few more sentences that you need to remember while you are on a trip to a foreign country whose language differs from yours.
Here are categories to learn before you travel the world:
LANGUAGE PHRASES TO KNOW IN TRANSIT
Not every agent speaks flawless English and as you notice when you exit the airport. Also as you discover various means of transportation, you should have important addresses written in a local language on paper, and know the following words (and the answers):
- I am going to…
- I came from…
- I leave on…
- Where is…
- How far?
- I lost my…
- Left, right, straight, back, turn around
- How long (duration)?
- What time does it leave?
- Bus / train station
LANGUAGE PHRASES THAT WILL COVER YOUR HEALTH AND WELLNESS
You don’t need to have a chronic illness or allergy before you get familiar with basic grooming and personal health terms. These health and well being words will help to clarify your issues, in addition to being provided with a checklist stating the health conditions in the local language.
- I am allergic to…
- This hurts
- I need antibiotics
- Where is the pharmacy?
- Tampons / sanitary pads
- Contact lens solution
ACCOMMODATION PHRASES YOU SHOULD KNOW IN EVERY LANGUAGE
Whether its hotel, guesthouse, apartment or Airbnb, the same concerns exist. To make your stay as comfortable as possible, make sure you know these crucial terms and phrases about accommodation which might make your stay incredibly stressful if you aren’t prepared.
Here are the top accommodation phrases to know:
- I lost my key
- [X] is not working
- Bed bugs!
- Air conditioner / fan
- Toilet paper
- Throw it in the toilet or trash can?
- Can I drink the tap water?
DINING PHRASES THAT MAKE OR BREAK YOUR RESTAURANT EXPERIENCE OVERSEAS
Imagine being in a town where you forgot to learn the basic words of dining in the local language. Hence, try to learn these key words and phrases if talking with hand gestures seems difficult for you.
- Is it spicy?
- Can I have… or Can I take?
- Bottled Water (indicate Still or Sparkling water)
- I am allergic to
- Where is the bathroom?
- Check, please!
- Do you take credit cards?
- Is the tip included?
SHOPPING QUESTIONS TO KNOW IN EVERY LANGUAGE
You’ll soon come across a scenario where you need to use shopping-related language skills to bargain even though you don’t plan to purchase souvenirs. The least you know, the less you can bargain against high prices which are normally set for tourists.
So if you are on a budget (or trying to be), take notes of these questions:
- I’m not interested / No, thank you
- Do you have change?
- Where is the bank?
- How much?
- Is there a discount?
- Too expensive
- When do you close?
- When do you open?
- Can I try?
LANGUAGE PHRASES THAT HELP WHEN MEETING NEW PEOPLE
The easiest way to understand a local language is to meet new individuals and make friends. But you’ll have to get through conversation-starter prerequisites such as introductions and foundational questioning first.
Indicate early on that you are foreign and encourage them to talk slowly if you wish to understand each other. To support along the way, bring a pocket-sized dual-language dictionary or use a Dictionary app. Sometimes, you may miss a few items in translation, but you will be proud of learning new vocabulary.
Here are helpful phrases to know when meeting new people:
- Hello, my name is…
- I am from…
- Do you speak English?
- I am studying…
- Slowly, please
- Do you have a phone charger?
- I don’t understand
PHRASES TO KNOW IN EVERY LANGUAGE IN CASE OF AN EMERGENCY
While it’d be great to never have an emergency, stuff happens. We can try our best to travel with caution and use our best judgement in every situation, but there are some words and phrases that are essential to know in the event of an emergency when we are hurt, feel unsafe, or are stuck in a situation.
- I need a hospital / doctor
- I am hurt
- Help me
- Call the police
- Call the ambulance
Depending on your overseas trip, there may be other phrases, extra words or vocabulary that will make your time abroad a little easier.
From now, you can travel confidently to any part of the world!