Your go-to guide for basic Spanish phrases you’ll need whilst you’re away13th January 2019
Whenever you travel abroad it’s always fun and polite to make a sincere effort to pick up as much of the new language as you can. No one is expecting fluency, but everyone appreciates a tourist who doesn’t just expect others to be able to speak their language. For certain simple and everyday dialogues and scenarios, just a few phrases are all you’ll need to get by. Your experience and appreciation of a new country will be greatly accentuated by having a grasp of the language. With the basic Spanish phrases and tips in this blog, you’ll be able to fully invest yourself into the people and places you encounter on your travels.
Alongside each of the basic Spanish phrases in this blog you will also find a phonetic guide to pronunciation. Care has also been taken to ensure that any accents and all spelling is accurate. So, should you ever need to write any of these basic Spanish phrases out, then this guide can help.
Basic greetings and gestures of politeness are absolutely vital to have a grasp of. These basic Spanish phrases will ensure that you are able to come across in a friendly and endearing manner, even if you’re struggling to communicate other, more complex elements of your intentions. You’ll find people are a lot more accommodating of your linguistic difficulties if you’re respectful and clearly trying your best.
Hello/hi – Hola (oh lah).
Good morning – Buenos días (bway-nos dee-ahs)/ Good afternoon – Buenos tardes (bway-nos tar-des)/Good night – Buenos noches (bway-nos noh-chays).
How are you? – ¿Cómo está? (co-mo est-ah). However, if you’re speaking with someone you already know, the more familiar and informal term is ‘¿cómo estás?’ (co-mo est-ahs).
Good, thank you (in response to the above question) – Bien, gracias (bee-en grah-cee-ahs).
Please – Por favour (por fah-vorr).
Thank you – Gracias (grah-cee-ahs).
Nice to meet you – Mucho gusto (moo-cho goos-toh).
What is your name? – ¿Cómo te llamas? (co-mo tee yam-ahs).
My name is… – Me llamo… (may yam-oh).
Do you speak English? – ¿Habla Inglés? (ah-blah een-glays). It is always preferable to ask if someone can speak English rather than simply assume, especially if you do so in Spanish. The effort and cultural acknowledgement will be appreciated.
Everyday transactions and conversations
There are certain basic Spanish phrases that will doubtless prove useful in many commonplace situations. These everyday communications include paying at shops, ordering food and drink and asking for directions. This blog can’t tell you what you want to eat or where you need to go, but we can help you communicate it in Spanish.
I would like – Me gustaría (may goo-stah-ree-ah). This is the politest way of enquiring about or requesting for something.
I want – Yo quiero (yoh kee-air-oh)/I don’t want – Yo no quiero (yoh no kee-air-oh).
Where is…? – ¿Dónde está?… (don-deh est-ah).
Do you have? – ¿Tiene? (tee-ayn-ay).
I have – Yo tengo (yoh tayn-goh)/I don’t have – Yo no tengo (yoh noh tayn-goh).
How much does it cost? – ¿Qué hora es? (kay ora ess).
I understand – Yo entiendo (yoh ayn-tee-en-doh)/ I don’t understand – Yo no entiendo (yoh noh ayn-tee-en-doh).
Do you understand? – ¿Entiende? (ayn-tee-ayn-day).
I need – Yo necesito (yoh nay-say-see-toh).
Where is the bathroom? – ¿Dónde está el baño? (don-deh est-ah el ban-yoh).
Words you couldn’t be without
It’s all well and good being able to ask for, and enquire as to the whereabouts, of things. But if you can’t say what those things are, you’re stuck. Of course, in this blog we can’t give you every Spanish noun you may have use for. We have put together a little list of some very useful words and basic Spanish phrases we are almost certain you’ll need though.
Numbers 1-10: One – Uno (oo-no)/Two – Dos (doss)/Three – Tres (tre-eh)/Four – Cuatro (kwuah-tro)/Five – Cinco (sin-koh)/Six – Seis (sey-ehs)/Seven – Siete (see-eht)/Eight – Ocho (otch-oh)/Nine – Nueve (noo-ey-veh)/Ten – Diez (dee-ehs).
A table for… – Una mesa para dos… (oona may-sah pa-rah doss).
A drink – Una bebida (ooh-nah bay-bee-dah).
Water – Agua (ah-gwah).
Beer – Cerveza (sair-veh-sah).
A coffee – Un café (Oon cah-fay).
The check – La cuenta (lah kwayn-tah).
A menu – Un menú (oon may-noo).
Money – Dinero (dee-nehr-oh).
A bank – Un banco (oon ban-coh).
A train – Un tren (oon tray-n).
Directions: Right – A la derecha (ah lah day-ray-chah)/Left – A la izquierda (ah lah eez-kee-air-dah)/Straight ahead – Derecho (day-ray-cho)/At the corner – En la esquina (en lah ehs-kee-nah).
By learning and using the above basic Spanish phrases you will make your trips to Spanish speaking regions all the more pleasant and immersive. Keeping this quick, handy go-to guide around with you on your travels will allow you to turn to it whenever you need.