Essential Spanish Phrases for Travel

By Polyglot Petra 4/2/24

The hardest part about Spanish is the regional differences. My Spanish is closest to Mexican Spanish, but since these phrases are basic, it shouldn't affect you too much. I’ve shortened every phrase in this post as much as I can so it’s easier to digest and memorize.  If something can be said politely in 2 words versus a full sentence, you’ll get the version with 2 words.

Basic Greetings

Hello, See you later, goodmorning, goodnight, etc

Hola: This means hello or hi! Buenos Días: Good Morning!  Buenas Tardes / Buenas: Good Afternoon! If you’re greeting the cashier at the supermarket and it’s 2-3 pm, this is the way to go.  Buenas Noches: Goodnight! Adiós: This means goodbye, but is barely ever used in the countries I’ve been. Instead, they prefer to say… Hasta Luego: This means “Until later” or “See you later.” Ciao: Bye!

EXTRA POLITENESS

How to say please, thank you, and excuse me in different situations

Disculpe: Excuse me. You can use this when you need to get someone’s attention. Con permiso / Permiso: Excuse me. Used when you need to squeeze past someone in the crowd, or when you need to excuse yourself from the table. That kind of excuse me. You get the idea! Por favor: Please Gracias: Thank you. Muchas Gracias: Thank you very much

Directions

How do I get here, where is the bathroom, where is the ATM, etc

¡Ayuda!: Help! (Let’s hope you won’t ever get to use this one.) ¿Me puede ayudar, por favor?: Could you please help me? ¿Hay un baño por aquí?: Is there a bathroom around here? ¿Dónde está el baño?: Where is the bathroom? ¿Hay un cajero por aquí?: Is there an ATM around here?

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