Remembering significant language phrases of a country will enhance your travel experience. Language is a central component of culture. Words are the way we interpret reality. They reveal individual and national perspectives of the world. Learning a language can be a way of tuning into that mindset. It will allow you to engage with a culture and find out more about it first-hand. You can ask questions, and understand the answers, knowing that no meaning will be lost in translation.
When traveling Europe, it can be difficult to keep on top of the languages. If there is one, in particular, you are trying to learn, another will quickly distract you. English is usually a common tongue. But, thankfully, it has not quite yet saturated itself into every culture. It is not sufficient to know only English. Not everyone speaks it, and attempts at speaking native language is always a good travel etiquette to uphold.
People will always appreciate travelers putting effort into the local language – even if they are terrible at it. So, we have put together some relevant and random language phrases you can use in Europe. How to say hello in each language, plus a few ones that are more specific. Most of them orientate around cultural cuisine. Not to focus too much on stereotypes, but ordering good food and drink is a good place to start.
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Hallo! This is the main one. Use it – be nice to people, say hi. In general, Germans are friendly and often love to practice their English, but will appreciate the effort. It is not an easy language but you will recognize some words just through being close to their English version. German is a beautiful language and a well-rounded one to learn. Spoken in Germany, Austria, parts of Switzerland, Italy, and Lichtenstein, it can be useful when traveling in Europe.
Ein Bier bitte. A beer, please. Germany sells some of the best beer in the world, and this is how to order one. Be sure to try their impressive collection – one at a time.
Helló! Hungarian is notoriously one of the hardest languages in the world to learn. However, Hungary is a great place to visit, with Budapest as a favorite European travel destination.
Kérek egy pálinkát. I’d like a pálinka. Rather than a beer in Hungary, be sure to ask for one of these. A classic national drink, pálinka is a fruit brandy that comes in a range of flavors. Choose from plum, apricot, cheer, honey and pick your favorite. Whichever your preference, be prepared for a heavy spirit taste.
Dia duit. God to you – the Irish way of saying hello. True, Ireland is a predominantly English speaking country. However, many people are striving to keep the ancient Gaelic language alive. Especially in the west and more rural areas, people will really appreciate the effort to speak Irish.
Ca bhfuil an teach tabhairne aitiuil? Where is the local pub? Not wanting to focus too much on the stereotypes, but Irish pubs really are some of the best around. There are always buzzing with energy and action. Of course, they are the perfect place to grab a Guinness. Listen to some live music and chat happily to some of the locals. This is one of the best language phrases to know.
Hola! As the third most spoken language in the world, Spanish is a significant one to learn. Over 350 million people know it. Knowing how to say hello it a good place to start.
Quiero. I want. Da me. Give me. Follow one of these with some tapas off the menu and you have a delicious order on the way. It seems strangely rude to be so direct in the language. However, this is just classic English politeness. Don’t worry about seeming rude; it is okay to be so direct in Spain. Tapas is an excellent part of Spanish culture, sit at the bar with the locals and enjoy some classic cuisine.
Ciao. Hi. Buongiorno. Hello. Both these are great ways of welcoming people in Italy. Again, a big part of the national culture bases itself around cuisine. Italy is renowned for its famous foods, now global favorites. The amazing coffee is also another traditional fame.
Un caffè per favore. Coffee, please. Be sure to visit some of Italy’s cafes. They range from local, old-styled shops to modern, edgy places. But the coffee is consistent: original, rich and flavorsome.
Non è la quantità ma la qualità. It’s quality rather than quantity. The typical Italian coffee is just an espresso, drank immediately standing up. So don’t be surprised if it’s small, after all, it’s all about the quality.
Takk for maten. Thanks for the food. This one of the most significant language phrases. There is some respectful dinner etiquette to follow in Norway. Simply thanking your host for the meal is a good one to remember. Showing gratitude is a universal thing. Knowing how to express it in any language is always worth learning.
Det er vakkert. It’s beautiful. Norway has some of the most stunning natural beauty in Europe. The land is wild and raw with many unpopulated areas. The beauty of the north permeates the country. Just the same as appreciating its food here is how to show gratitude for the beauty of Norway.
Zdravo. Hello. Ljubljana is one of European’s friendliest capital cities. It is also one of the smallest, safest and cleanest. People speak English very well, but they are excessively welcoming and will be happy to teach you some Slovenian phrases! Be sure to take them up on the offer, it is an interesting and underrated language.
Živeli! Cheers! There are some typical strong Slovenian shots to be drunk. Be sure to ask the locals and see what you like. Take them with a shot of orange juice to balance the taste. But if this strong alcoholic burst is not for you, Laško is the nation’s favorite beer. Either way, be sure to say Živeli when you drink and cheers to the moment.
Hej. Hi. As another Scandinavian language, Danish is quite similar to Norwegian and Swedish. Saying hello is the simplest but one of the best language phrases to learn in any language.
København. Copenhagen. The capital – and a place you must go. As you can see, the spelling is different. The pronunciation is also quite a bit softer and more subtle than our English interpretation. However, you say it, be sure to visit this fantastic city.
Explore Europe the right way
Compact and cultural, Europe it there for you to explore – and the languages are there to be explored with it. So start learning these key language phrases and experience Europe the right way.
Do you know any more language phrases for your country? Add them to the list – leave a comment below!