Are you planning a trip to Colombia!? Then pack these 10 expressions in your bag and you’ll be all set to go!
Hola, Chao, Por favor, Perdón, Gracias
Meaning: Hi, Goodbye, Please, Sorry/Excuse me, Thank you
These are the basic words that you'll be using every day! Whether you're at the airport, at a restaurant or at someone else's home, it's always nice to be able to greet, thanks and say our goodbyes.
Me llamo ..... y soy Colombiana
Meaning: My name is ..... and I'm Colombian.
Knowing the expression to introduce your name and being able to say where you're from might come in handy when starting a conversation with someone you've just met.
Meaning: Do you sepak English/French?
Sometimes, even if you're fluent in Spanish, you might find yourself in a situation (e.g. at a hotel, at a bank, at a hospital) in which you rather speak a language you feel more confortable with. Use this phrase in those cases!
Lo siento, hablo muy poco Español. ¿Podría por favor hablar más despacio?
Meaning: I'm sorry, I speak a little Spanish. Could you please speak more slowly?
If you've decided to visit Colombia with a beginner's level in Spanish and hoping to improve, this is the perfect way to show you're motivated to boost your Spanish skills! The person with whom you're speaking will do her best to speak slower and clearer.
¿Me podría ayudar, por favor?
Meaning: Could you please help me?
Whether you're at the airport, at a hotel or walking down a street while looking for an address, you might end up needing someone to assist you. Use always this question and for sure there'll be someone willing to lend you a hand.
Meaning: I don't understand!
It's okay to not understand what others are saying all the time, specially when you're in an environment in which locals will most certainly use words of Colombian slang (words that were not taught in your Spanish class). Just use this two-word phrase and someone will untangle the mystery for you!
¿Dónde está .... el baño/el supermercado?
Meaning: Where's .... the bathroom/the supermarket?
This is the basic question you'll need to learn if you want to ask where a person, place or thing (e.g. toilet, computer, bag, etc) is.
Meaning: How much does it cost?
Certainly, this South American country will not deceive you! Soon enough, you'll find yourself in love with its foods, drinks and traditional crafts. Don't forget to use this phrase when asking for the price of something.
¿Dónde puedo coger un taxi?
Meaning: Where can I get a taxi?
As a tourist, knowing where to catch a taxi or even a bus is always useful. Sometimes, after a long day walking through the city, all you need is a fast ride back to your hotel.
Piece of advice (if you're in Spain): 'coger' in Spain means to have sexual relations with someone else, so you better avoid this word and use 'tomar un taxi' instead.
¿Aceptan tarjetas de crédito?
Meaning: Do you accept credits cards?
Credit cards are accepted almost everywhere, but in Colombia there're lost of little shops around neighborhoods that don't accept credits cards. The same principle applies for street vendors.
If you want everyone to smile at you, just go with this one!