60 Must Know Spanish Phrases for Travel

Get ready for your trip to Spain or any Spanish speaking country with 60 must know Spanish phrases for travel!

Spanish is a global language, which is spoken by over 483 million native speakers today, mainly in Spain and American countries. It is the 4th most spoken language in the world, after English, Mandarin Chinese and Hindu. There are several different dialects of Spanish which are spoken both around the world and in different parts of Spain. The official dialect being Castilian which is spoken in Northern and Central Spain. Andalusian, Latin American Spanish and many others are widely used dialects of Spanish.

Spanish is actually the official language for a range of countries, including Spain (obviously), Puerto Rice, Argentina, Chile, Bolivia, Mexico, Peru, Ecuador, El Salvador, Cuba, Costa Rica, Uruguay, Colombia, Honduras, Nicaragua, Guatemala and Panama. Plus many more! So, learning Spanish won’t just help you out when travelling to Spain. Sure, the dialect changes a bit, but the basics will always help you out a little.

Before I travelled to Spain in 2019, I learnt some of the basics to help me get around. Sure, in most places I went, English was widely spoken. But I personally always try to learn at least a little of the local language when travelling somewhere. Mostly because I feel like it helps to absorb and experience the culture, and also because its the right thing to do.

Since then, I’ve been trying to learn Spanish more, but taking free online classes with Duolingo. I’ve been learning so much this way, and you can do a lesson in as little as 5 minutes, so the time you spend learning is up to you. Babbel is also a super popular way to learn Spanish, and although it isn’t free, it is very affordable. I highly recommend them if you want to try your hand at learning not only Spanish, but any language.

Learning or just knowing some basic phrases will help you on your travels. So, here’s 60+ Spanish phrases for travel that you should know! From basic greetings, to getting around and basic restaurant ordering, I guarantee this phrases and words will help you out!

What is the vocabulary in Spanish for travel?

The Basics

Start with the basics. Some of the most common words and phrases to help you understand a little.

  • Sí (see) – Yes
  • No (no) – No
  • Lo siento (lo sy-en-to) – I’m sorry
  • Por favor (por fav-or) – Please
  • Gracias (gra-thee-as) – Thankyou
  • Disculpe (dis-kul-pay) – Excuse me
  •  ¿Habla Inglés?  (ab-la en-glees) – Do you speak English?
  • No hablo español (no ab-lo es-pa-nyol) – I don’t speak Spanish
  • Hablo un poco de español (ab-lo un po-ko de es-pa-nyol) – I speak a little Spanish

This basic vocabulary will help you get your point across! Here’s how to say common vocabulary phrases that you can use for just about anything.

  • Yo quiero (yo lee-ayr-oh) – I want
  • Yo no quiero (yo no kee-ayr-oy) – I don’t want
  • Yo tengo (yo ten-goh) – I have
  • Yo no tengo (yo no ten-goh) – I don’t have
  • ¿Tiene…? (tee-ayn-ay) – Do you have…
  • Yo necesito (yo nee-say-say-toh) – I need
  • Busco (buus-ko) – I’m looking for…

Greetings and meeting people

  • Hola (o-la) – Hello
  • Adiós (a-dyos) – Bye 
  • Buenos días (bway-nos dee-as) – Good morning 
  • Buenas tardes (bway-nos tar-des) – Good afternoon/good evening 
  • Buenas noches (bway-nas no-ches) – Good night 
  • Hasta luego (as-ta lee-go) – See you later
  • Mucho gusto (mo-cho goos-to) – Nice to meet you
  • Me llamo (Emma) (me lya-mo) – My name is Emma
  • ¿Cómo te llamas? (ko-mo te lya-mas) – What is your name?
  • ¿Qué tal? (ke tal) – How are you?
  • Bien, y tú? (byen e too) – Fine, and you?
  • Soy de (Australia) (soy de) – I’m from Australia
must know Spanish phrases barcelona

Directions and getting around

Use the phrase ¿Dónde está..? in general to ask for directions. For example:

  • ¿Dónde está el banco? (don-de es-ta el ban-ko) – Where is the bank?
  • ¿Dónde está el Baño? (don-de es-ta el bane-o) – Where is the bathroom?
  • ¿Dónde está el supermercado? (don-de es-ta el super-mer-cado) – Where is the supermarket?
  • Un taxi (un tax-i) – A taxi
  • Un tren (un trayn) – A train
  • Un hotel (un oh-tell) – A hotel
  • El baño (el bane-o) – A bathroom
  • El banco (el ban-ko) A bank
  • Un billete (un bee-lye-tee) – One ticket
  • A la derecha (a la day-ray-chah) – To the right
  • A la izquierda (a la ez-kee-ayr-dah) – To the left
  • Derecho (day-ray-choh) – Straight ahead

Restaurants and ordering food

  • Apertivos (a-pe-re-tee-vos) – Appetisers
  • De Entrada (de en-tra-da) – Entrees
  • Segundos Platos (se-goon-dos pla-tos) – Main courses
  • Postres (pos-tres) – Desserts
  • Una mesa para (dos) personas (un-a mess-a par-a dos per-son-as) – A table for two people
  • La cuenta (la keen-ta) – The check
  • ¿Qúe recomiemda? (ke re-ko-men-da) – What would you recommend?
  • Quisiera el menú (kee-sye-ra el me-nu) – I’d like the menu
  • Café (ka-faay) – Coffee
  • Carne (car-nay) – Meat/beef
  • Ensalada (en-sa-la-da) – Salad
  • Azúcar (a-thoo-kar) – Sugar
  • Leche (le-che) – Milk
  • Agua (ah-gwah) – Water
  • Cerveza (ther-ve-tha) – Beer

When ordering, use the verb quiero (I want) or quisiera (I’d like) to order.  For example:

  • Quiero un Café (kee-eh-ro un cafe) – I want a coffee
  • Quisiera una ensalada (kee-se-eh-ra un-a en-sa-la-da) – I’d like a salad

Use the sin (without) and con (with) to order something with or without items. For example:

  • Un Café sin azúcar (un cafe sin a-thoo-kar) – A coffee without sugar
  • Un hamburgeruesa con carne (un ham-bur-ges-ea kon car-nee) – A hamburger with meat

Now that you know these must know Spanish phrases for travel, you are ready to conquer not only Spain, but a bunch of other countries too! Don’t forget to sign up to Babbel for the best Spanish learning experience!

Plan your trip to Spain with some of my other blogs:

Trip planning resources

Planning a trip? Here are some of my favourite planning and booking resources and websites!

  • Booking.com: My go to for booking hotels! Search by a huge range of filters to find your perfect stay. Once booked, keep everything in one place with the easy to use app!
  • Skyscanner: The only place I search for flights!
  • Trip Advisor: For reviews or information on just about anything, head to Trip Advisor!
  • Get Your Guide: My favourite for booking day tours and tickets in advance!
  • Tour Radar: If group tours are more your thing, check out a huge range of different trips and tours on Tour Radar.
  • Travel Insurance: Never travel without travel insurance, you’ll never know when you might need it. Seriously, it’s come in as a life saver on many occasions during my travels. I recommend Travelex Travel Insurance.

Happy learning (and travelling!),