Popular Spanish Phrases

Learning Spanish can seem daunting at first. There is so much vocabulary and so many expressions that the learning curve may start to feel more like a mountain. Not to worry! There are a variety of handy phrases to get started with Spanish. Whether you are meeting/greeting new people, ordering food at a restaurant or interested in purchasing something at a local market, adding some of these expressions to your early vocabulary repertoire will help take your Spanish to the next level and most importantly, get you talking faster!

Good morning Good morning

Everyday Spanish Phrases

Sí por favor Yes please
No gracias No thank you
De nada You’re welcome
Lo siento I’m sorry
Disculpe/perdone Excuse me
Salud Bless you (after someone sneezes)
¿Dónde está...el baño? Where is...the bathroom?
No entiendo I don’t understand
¿Cómo se dice _____ en español? How do you say _______ in Spanish?
Por favor, hable más despacio Please speak a little slower (formal)
¿Usted habla inglés? Do you speak English? (formal)
¿Qué hora es? What time is it?
Son las 10:00 (de la mañana) It is 10:00 o'clock (in the morning)

Greetings and Saying Goodbye

Buenos días Good morning
Buenas tardes Good afternoon/evening
Buenas noches Good night
Me llamo ______ My name is ________
¿Cómo te llamas? What is your name? (informal)
¿Cómo se llama Usted? What is your name? (formal)
Mucho gusto Nice to meet you
¿Qué tal? What’s up?/How are you? (informal)
¿Cómo estás? How are you? (informal)
¿Cómo esta Usted? How are you? (formal)
Estoy bien, ¿y tú? I’m good, and you?
Adiós/hasta luego Bye/see you later

Expressing Opinions, Feelings and Emotions

Tengo sed I’m thirsty
Tengo hambre I'm hungry
Estoy contento/a I’m happy
Estoy triste I’m sad
Estoy emocionado/a I’m excited
Estoy enojado/a I’m angry
Estoy enfermo/a I’m sick

Holidays

Feliz Cumpleaños Happy Birthday
Feliz Navidad Merry Christmas
Feliz Año Nuevo Happy New Year
Feliz Pascua Happy Easter

Shopping and Bargaining

¿Cuánto cuesta? How much does this cost?
Es un poco/muy/demasiado caro It is a little/very/too expensive
¿Tiene una talla más chica/grande? Do you have a smaller/bigger size? (formal)
¿Aceptan tarjeta de crédito, o solo en efectivo? Do you accept credit card, or only cash?

Weather

Hace calor hoy It is hot today
Hace frio hoy It’s cold today
Es un día muy bonito It is a beautiful day

Restaurants

Para mí/quiero el pescado, por favor For me/I want the fish, please
Me sirve más cafe por favor Can you serve me more coffee please (formal)
Me trae una cuchara por favor Can you bring me a spoon please (formal)
Es delicioso, me gusta mucho It’s delicious, I really like it
¡Buen provecho! Enjoy your meal
*Cultural Note: You will hear people say this to others at their table and even to complete strangers. For example, if another couple is being sat at a table nearby and you have just been served your food, it is completely normal for them to say “buen provecho” to you. Just smile and nod or say “gracias.”

For many beginners, speaking a foreign language can be the hardest skill to acquire. As adults we are used to dominating our language where we can effortlessly express every thought, opinion, emotion and desire. Learning a foreign language forces us into a vulnerable, childlike state where we are not able to completely express ourselves. These useful Spanish phrases will help you conquer your first experience in a Spanish speaking environment, whether it be traveling to a Spanish speaking country or going to the Mexican market around the corner. They also serve as great starter Spanish phrases for kids as well!

Not sure where to start? Choose ten phrases from this list and master them to gain confidence before moving onto the next ten. Before you know it, these expressions will start to roll off your tongue naturally. But the most important step is to let go of your fear and get out there and start speaking!

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