Learn How to Ask for Travel Directions in Spanish

Get to Where You're Going With This Spanish for Travel Guide

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There are few things more frustrating while traveling than getting lost in a foreign place. Fortunately, if you are traveling in an area where Spanish is one of the languages spoken, this list of phrases and words below can help you quickly get to where you are going.

Keep This Vocabulary List on Hand

Combine the vocabulary listed below with basic grammar and you will be well on your way to getting the help you need. Even if you are not proficient in Spanish, in most places you travel you will find that people will appreciate your desire to use their language. Print out or write down the phrases below so you can communicate with the people around you during your travels. ¡Buen viaje! (Have a great trip!)

Basic Spanish Travel Phrases

  • Where is...? Where are...?¿Dónde está...? ¿Dónde están...?
  • How do you go to...?¿Por dónde se va a...? Or, ¿Cómo puedo llegar a...?
  • Where are we on the map? ¿Dónde estamos aquí en el mapa?
  • Is it far away? Is it near here?¿Está lejos? ¿Está por aquí?
  • I'm looking for...Busco...
  • I'm lost.Estoy perdido (perdida if you are female).

Where can I catch a taxi (a bus)? — Latin America: ¿Dónde puedo tomar un taxi (un autobús)? Spain: ¿Dónde puedo coger un taxi (un autobús)?

  • Note that other terms used regionally for "bus" include bus, colectivo, camión, camioneta, góndola, guagua, micro, microbús and pullman. Be careful with the usage of the verb coger in parts of Latin America, because it can have an obscene meaning.
  • Additional ways of travel could be on foot (a pie), by car (en coche), on a motorbike (la moto), by boat (el barco) and by plane (el avión).

More Spanish Speaking Terms When Traveling

  • Write it down, please.Escríbalo, por favor.
  • Speak more slowly, please.Hágame el favor de hablar más despacio.
  • I don't understand Spanish well.No entiendo bien el español.
  • Is there anyone who speaks English?¿Hay alguien que hable inglés?
  • North, east, west, south.Norte, este or oriente, oeste or occidente, sur
  • Kilometer, mile, meterKilómetro, milla, metro
  • Street, avenue, highwayCalle, avenida, camino or carretera
  • City blockCuadra (Latin America) or manzana (Spain)
  • Street cornerEsquina
  • AddressDirección

Tips for Conversation While Abroad

  • Get specific. Use key terms for places you are going to in your conversations with others. You may want directions to a shopping mall (el centro comercial), general shops (las tiendas) or the grocery market (el mercado). All three can be summed up as shops, but they vary in the type of shop. If you want to explore tourist attractions, detail if you would like to see an art gallery (la galería de arte), a park (el parque) or a historic center (el casco antiguo).
  • Be friendly. There is nothing that delights locals more than when tourists are courteous and ask for help with a smile. Include basic greetings along with your phrases such as hello (hola or buenas), how are you doing? (¿qué tal?) and good day (good morning is ​buenos días, good afternoon is buenas tardes and good evening is buenas noches).