Learning a new language can be intimidating. There are countless strategies for learning a new language in the modern world, including in-person classes, websites like Duolingo, a potpourri of apps, and immersion programs. In many industries, learning a new language is an essential skill that will give an individual an advantage over other candidates and coworkers. In many regions or when traveling to countries where the language in question is spoken, it is practically a necessity. There are a few Spanish phrases that can help an individual survive a conversation or a trip abroad.
1. ¿Dónde está (el baño, la estación de policía)?
This phrase means, “Where is (the bathroom, the police station)?” It is important for individuals in Spanish-speaking nations to be able to orient themselves and ask for directions. Getting lost in a domestic setting is intimidating enough; imagine the same scenario in a country where your language of fluency is not spoken. Of course, it would help for an individual to learn more location words. Many may argue that applications such as Google Maps eliminates the need to learn this phrase, but this is simply untrue. Phones do not always have reception, can run out of battery, and can be expensive to use overseas.
2. Yo necesito ayuda.
This phrase means, “I need help.” Though the specific help that is needed is not specified, getting an individual’s attention and making the need known is an important starting point. In order to customize this phrase, individuals can add “con,” which means with, and a relevant ending such as “mi salud/my health” or “mi coche/my car.”
In this format, tienes means “do you have_?” This is just a starting point for asking for asking about an object. This can prove useful when looking for a cell phone to borrow, a map, water, or any other immediate need.
Overall, though learning a language is not a simple task, learning useful phrases is. If learning domestically is not your style, joining a Spanish immersion program abroad will help you hone your skills in the intended setting. The CRLA Costa Rican Language Academy is one of the best Spanish immersion programs that can put you on the path to fluency.