July 01, 2019

Vacationing in Mexico. Learn This Basic Vocabulary

How do you say? | Vacation in Mexico Basic Vocabulary | Nueve Sterling

Are you planning a vacation in Mexico anytime soon to take advantage of the gorgeous weather, sun, sand, food, and friendly people? If that's the case, I've put together this guide to assist you in getting around and make your stay even more pleasant.

Living in several countries has taught me that making an attempt to speak in the language of the country you are visiting makes you feel more welcome. My time in South Korea exemplifies this, as I didn't know much but could at least say "hello," "thank you," "good bye," "delicious," and a few other words in Korean that made the people I interacted with feel valued and thankful for the effort I was putting in.

I also learned that you shouldn't ask for directions or elaborated questions because although the locals will definitely understand you… will you understand their answer? For example: Where is the bathroom? (¿Dónde está el baño?). You’ll feel very proud of yourself because you were practicing that phrase for weeks and you finally had your opportunity to ask, right? Have confidence that whoever you’re talking to will understand you perfectly because he/she will answer: "se va derechito y pasando aquellos sillones da la vuelta a la izquierda, ahí lo encontrará al fondo" ....WHAAAATTTT???!!!!

To prevent you from making a "whaaat face," I've put together this guide that will earn you the sympathies and large grins of the Spanish-speaking folks in whatever lovely vacation place you choose.

In the video, first you'll hear me pronouncing every word very slowly so you can practice how to say it, and then I'll say it at normal speed.




First of all, the three magic words:

Hola: hello

Por favor: please

Gracias: thank you


If you want to emphasize:

Muchas gracias: thank you very much


The obvious ones, but still:

: yes

No: no


Next, the ones that you shouldn't miss:

Amigo: friend (if it is a male)

Amiga: friend (if it is a female)

So now you can say "hello friend": hola amigo/a


If you really want to impress the person in front of you, then you can greet him/her by saying:

Buenos días: good morning (until noon)

Buenas tardes: good afternoon (until 6 pm)

Buenas noches: good evening (from 7 pm onwards)


If you want to ask for some drinks, the easiest way will be:

Agua por favor: water please

Una cerveza por favor: a beer please

Un tequila por favor: a tequila please

Una margarita por favor: a margarita please


If somebody asks for your name in English, you can surprise him/her by saying:

Me llamo... : my name is...

And if they want to know where are you from, then you have to say:

Soy de Canadá: I am from Canada

You can also say:

Soy canadiense: I am Canadian


If you would like to know how much something costs, then you have to say:

¿Cuánto cuesta?: how much does it cost? but then, you will get the answer in Spanish and surprise! Your "whaaat face"will be your next gesture, so maybe hold off on asking for the price in Spanish unless you are fairly comfortable with your numbers being said in very rapid procession. 

If you go to a Mexican resort, I'm sure you'll come across a wide choice of irresistible local products, including apparel, handicrafts, art, and jewelry. Mexico is well-known for making beautiful handcrafted items that would be a shame not to bring home. The truth is that if you buy those things in touristy regions, you can expect to pay "tourist" pricing.

Locals know that if you can afford to visit a resort, you can most likely afford to spend double or triple the price of their items.


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Don't pay tourist prices for authentic Mexican silver jewelry. Instead, go to Nueve Sterling and receive the beautiful handmade silver jewelry from Taxco, Mexico shipping from Canada, delivered to your door. 


If you go to a restaurant and you like the food, you can make the waiter/waitress feel appreciated by saying:

Todo estuvo delicioso: everything was delicious

Muy buen servicio: very good service


The most common ways to say goodbye are:

Adiós: goodbye

Hasta luego: see you later

Or as Terminator would say "hasta la vista": see you

So, if you use any of the terms and phrases in this guide, you can be sure that your stay will be accompanied by enormous grins of thanks from the folks you'll be talking to. I'm sure you'll feel terrific!

Felices vacaciones (happy holidays)      :) 





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