While many tourists or other new arrivals may not worry about learning the local language before traveling to Mexico, it’s wise to know at least a few key Spanish phrases, questions, and statements prior to making the journey. That ensures you can communicate effectively upon arrival. Knowing a couple of handfuls of sayings can make navigating a Spanish-speaking country easier. Plus, it can help you get assistance when needed, including if you encounter a dangerous situation. With that in mind, here are eight sayings to learn in Spanish before traveling to Mexico.
In 2021, approximately 28.79 million United States citizens traveled to Mexico for work, vacations, and a variety of other reasons. Additionally, an estimated 1.6 million Americans live in Mexico, and that number may continue growing as an increasing portion of the workforce turns to remote-only work opportunities for their careers.
8 Sayings to Learn in Spanish Before Traveling to Mexico
1. Please and Thank You
While “please” and “thank you” are technically two sayings, knowing them both in Spanish is a must. It allows you to remain polite while engaging with locals and other visitors, increasing the odds that you’ll make a positive impression along the way.
“Please” in Spanish is “por favor.” If you want to say “thank you” in Spanish, that’s “gracias.”
2. Excuse Me
The phrase “excuse me” is useful in a wide array of situations. It can alert someone that you need room to pass them when in a crowded area. Plus, you can use “excuse me” if you need to get a person’s attention before asking them a question.
In Spanish, “disculpe” means “excuse me.”
3. Can You Help Me?
When you’re new to a city, you may need to get a few questions answered to navigate the area or otherwise find what you need. Instead of approaching with your primary question, it’s wise to begin the conversation by asking, “Can you help me?” That allows the other person to decide whether they want to engage, which is more polite.
If you need to find out if a person can assist you, “Can you help me?” in Spanish is “¿Me puede ayudar?”
4. Where Is…?
As you’re navigating a city that’s new to you, you might need assistance finding specific sights or businesses. As a result, you need to know how to ask, “Where is…?” which allows you to get the information you need.
“Where is…?” in Spanish is “¿Dónde está…?” Simply follow that up with the Spanish term for where you want to go, and you’ll usually get some directions in response.
5. How Much Does This Cost?
At some point while you’re in Mexico, you’ll need to shop or access specific services, like hiring a taxi. While pricing is listed openly in some cases, it isn’t in others. As a result, being able to ask, “How much does this cost?” is critical, ensuring you’re ready to cover the expense.
If you need to know the price of a product or service while in Mexico, ask, “¿Cuánto cuesta?” That essentially means, “How much does it cost?” or “How much is it?” which usually gets you the information you need.
6. I Would Like to Order…
Dining out while visiting Mexico is a favorite activity for many, so knowing how to place an order at a restaurant is a must. Fortunately, saying, “I would like to order…” in Spanish is relatively simple.
“Me gustaría…” means “I would like to order” in Spanish. Simply follow it up with the name of the dish or beverage you want.
7. Help Me!
While most people spend time in Mexico without an issue, emergencies can also happen. Whether you or a party member is experiencing a medical crisis or you’re being harmed by someone while in the country, knowing how to request help is essential.
If you’re in trouble and need immediate assistance, “¡Ayúdeme!” means “Help me!” in Spanish.
8. Do You Speak English?
In most cases, it’s best to try to communicate in Spanish whenever possible when you’re in Mexico. However, if you need to discuss a matter that you don’t know how to express in Spanish, you might want to find someone who speaks English.
If you want to find out if someone speaks English, ask, “¿Habla Inglés?” Usually, if they do, they’ll typically respond in English, and you can begin the conversation. If not, they’ll reply with “No.”
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