The top 21 phrases to master in different languages

  • 15 Jan, 2020
  • Franki Napolitano
  • No Comments

Make your trip a little easier by mastering these key phrases in another language!

When you go abroad, it’s always useful to know a little of the local language, don’t you think? Even if it’s just being able to say hello, goodbye, knowing your P&Qs or being able to order a drink, it makes you feel a little more polite than just expecting the locals to know English.

Given this, we thought it’d be helpful to bring you the 21 most useful phrases to learn before your next trip!

Luckily for us in the APS Team, we have plenty of native speakers of the below languages, so you’ll be happy to know you won’y just be talking in Google Translate speak..!

Being polite


Learn to say Hello in 6 languages

Spanish – Hola

Italian – Ciao

French – Bonjour

Polish – Cześć

German – Hallo

Japanese – こんにちは  / ko-n-ni-chi-wa


How to say Goodbye in Italian, Spanish, German and more

Spanish – Adiós

Italian – Ciao

French – Au Revoir

Polish – Do widzenia

German – Auf Wiedersehen

Japanese – さようなら / sai-yoh-na-ra


Say Yes in 6 langiages

Spanish – 

Italian – 

French – Oui

Polish – Tak

German – Ja

Japanese – はい (hai)


Saying Please in multiple languages

Spanish – Por favor

Italian – Per favore

French – S’il vous plaît

Polish – Proszę

German – Bitte

Japanese – 〜ください・お願いします (~ku-da-sa-i / onegaishimasu)


How to say No in 6 different languages

Spanish – No

Italian – No

French – Non

Polish– Nie

German – Nein

Japanese – いいえ (iie (ii-eh))

Thank you

Learn how to say Thank You in Japanese!

Spanish – Gracias

Italian – Grazie

French – Merci

Polish – Dziękuję

German – Danke

Japanese – ありがとうございます (arigatou gozaimasu)

How are you?

Do you know how to say 'How are You' in different languages?

Spanish – ¿Cómo estás?

Italian – Come stai?

French – Comment ça va?

Polish – Jak się masz?

German – Wie geht es dir?

Japanese – おげんきですか / ogenki desu ka

I’m fine, thanks

How to respond with 'I'm Fine' in German and Italian

Spanish – Estoy bien, gracias

Italian – Sono buono, grazie

French – Bien merci

Polish – Czuję się dobrze, dzięki

German – Es geht mir gut, danke

Japanese – げんきです/ genki desu


Discover how you say Sorry in 6 languages

Spanish – Lo siento

Italian – Mi dispiace

French – Pardon

Polish – Przepraszam

German – Es tut mir leid

Japanese – すみません / sumimasen

Excuse Me / Pardon

How to say Excuse me / pardon in Polish and French

Spanish – Disculpe

Italian – Mi scusi

French – Excusez-moi

Polish – Przepraszam

German – Entschuldigung

Japanese – すみません / sumimasen

Making conversation

What’s your name?

How to say What's your name in Italian and French?

Spanish – ¿Cómo te llamas?

ItalianCome ti chiami?

French – Comment t’appelle tu?

Polish – Jak masz na imię?

German – Wie heisst du?

Japanese – お名前はなんですか / o-na-ma-e wa nan desu ka

My name is…

How to say My name is 6 languages

Spanish  – Me llamo…

Italian – Mi chiamo…

French – mon nom est… / je m’appelle …

Polish – Nazywam się…

German – Ich heisse…

Japanese – 私は〜〜です / watashi wa — desu

I don’t understand

How do you say I don't understand in Spanish or French? srcset=” width=”1280″ height=”853″ />

Spanish – No entiendo

Italian – Non capisco

French – Je ne compris pas

Polish – Nie rozumiem

German – Ich ferstehe nicht

Japanese – わかりません / wakarimasen

Could you speak slower, please?

This is how youi say 'Could you speak slower, please?'

Spanish – ¿Podrías hablar mas despacio, por favor?

Italian – Potresti parlare lentamente, per favore

French – Pouvez-vous parler plus lentiment s’il vous plait?

Polish – Mógłbyś mówić wolniej, proszę

German – Können Sie bitte langsam sprechen?

Japanese – ゆっくり話してください / yu-kku-ri ha-na-shi-te ku-da-sa-i

Eating and drinking

I’d like a beer / coffee / water please

How to order a drink 'I'd like a beer / coffee / water please'

Spanish – Me gustaría una cerveza / un café / un agua

Italian – Vorrei una birra / un caffe / una acqua

French – Je voudrais une bière / un café / d’eau

Polish – Poproszę piwo / kawę / wodę

German – Ich möchte ein Bier/ Kaffee/ Wasser

Japanese – ビール・コーヒ・水をください / bi-ru / ko-hi / mizu o ku-da-sa-i

Could I see a menu? / Please bring me a menu

Phrases to master - Could I see a menu / please bring me a menu

Spanish – ¿Puedo ver la carta?

Italian – Vi prego di portarmi un menu

French – Pourrais-je voir un menu s’il vous plaît

Polish – Czy mogę prosić o menu?

German – Die Speisekarte, bitte

That was delicious!

How to say That was delicious! in Italian and Spanish

Spanish – Estaba exquisito!

Italian – Era delizioso!

French – C’était délicieux!

Polish – To było pyszne!

German – Es war lecker!

Japanese – おいしかったです / o-i-shi-ka-t-ta desu

Can I get the bill, please

Know how to say Can I have the bill, please in 6 languages

Spanish – La cuenta, por favor

Italian – Il conto, per favore

French – l’addition s’il vous plaît

Polish – Poproszę rachunek

German – Die Rechnung, bitte

Japanese – おかんじょうをお願いします / o-kanjo-u o o-ne-ga-i-shi-masu – although not really used. In most restaurants in Japan, they bring the bill to you as you eat, you wouldn’t usually need to ask for it 

In an emergency


How do you say Help! in Polish or Spanish?

Spanish – ¡Ayuda!

Italian – Aiuto!

French – Aidez-moi!

Polish – Pomocy!

German – Hilfe!

Japanese – 助けて! / ta-su-ke-te

Can I use your phone?

Do you know how to say Can I use your phone? in Italian?

Spanish – ¿Puedo usar tu teléfono?

Italian – Posso usare il tuo telefono?

French – Puis-je utiliser votre téléphone?

Polish – Czy mogę skorzystać z Twojego telefonu?

German – Kann ich Ihr Handy benutzen?

Japanese – お電話を使ってもいいですか / o-den-wa wo tsu-ka-tte mo ii desu ka

Leave me alone!

Know how to say Leave me alone! if you're feeling threatend

Spanish –  ¡Déjame en paz!

Italian – Lasciami solo!

French – Laissez moi tout seul!

Polish – Zostaw mnie w spokoju!

German – Lass mich allein!

Japanese – ほっといてよ!/ ho-tto-ite-yo


So, what are you waiting for? If this has whet your appetite to really learn a new language, Memrise comes highly recommended by the team here!

All images courtesy of Pixabay.

About Franki Napolitano

Working in the travel industry has really opened my eyes to the attitudes, issues and obstacles people can face just trying to go on holiday. Whether it's due to their health, family situations or budgets, travel should be accessible for all. I cover everything from travelling with a disability to how to save money while you travel, hoping to make the holiday process easier for all.

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