Tag: travel foreign country

11 Phrases You Need To Know Before Traveling To Vietnam

Traveling to a foreign country can be one of the most exciting experiences of your lifetime. You get to interact with people from a different culture, and you get to see the history and beauty of somewhere far away from home.

While most people dream about traveling to a new country like Vietnam, many hesitate due to the language barriers. Not knowing the native language can pose many challenges during your trip, especially if you encounter an emergency of some sort.


If you plan on traveling to a new country, it’s very important that you try to familiarize yourself with some basic phrases to help you get around and interact with people while you’re there. The following are 11 phrases that you should know before you travel to Vietnam

1. Do you speak English?

English is one of the most widely spoken languages around the world, so it’s possible that you will encounter someone in another country that speaks English. Being able to ask, “Do you speak English?”, will allow you to better communicate with someone you meet if they do, in fact, speak English. This can help ensure that you have a thorough understanding of what is being said to you.

2. Where is the bathroom?

When you’re traveling, knowing the location of the bathroom is something you’ll absolutely need to know, and since you’ll be spending most of your time sightseeing or taking tours, you’ll want to be sure you know how to ask where the bathroom is to avoid having any embarrassing accidents.

3. My name is _____________.

You will likely need to introduce yourself to people you meet, so it’s important to know how to tell them what your name is. This way, they’ll be able to contact you, and you can have a better chance at meeting new friends.

4. How do you say ______________?

There are going to be words you don’t know how to say, and you’ll likely use hand gestures to get your point across. Knowing “How do you say…?” and then pointing to an object will allow you to communicate better with the native speakers in the foreign country. Not only will you be able to ask for the items you desire, but you’ll also learn more words and phrases in the language as well.

5. How much does this cost?

If you are doing any shopping while on vacation or even if you plan on dining out, you’ll need to be able to ask how much items cost. This way, you’ll know if you not only have enough money, but if you want to spend that much money on the object.

6. Where can I catch a bus/taxi/train?

If you’re unfamiliar with the area, you may need to find local public transportation. Being able to ask where to find a bus, taxi or train can help you get around the town more easily and allow you to take in more sights.

7. Where is the hospital?

Although you hope to never need to visit a hospital while on vacation, it’s still extremely important for you to know where the closest hospital is located if you are ever in that situation.

8. Call the police.

Again, you hope to never need emergency services while traveling, but if you do, it’s always beneficial to know how to ask for help so that your needs can be met right away.

9. Please and thank you.

It’s important that you’re polite when speaking to other people, so be sure that you know how to use your manners and say please and thank you when talking with natives.

10. I would like _________.

Sometimes you will like to ask for something, so it’s important to let people know what your intentions are. Knowing the phrase, “I would like” is also beneficial for restaurants or cafes where you can just point to the item you’d like to purchase.

11. Do you take credit cards?

If you plan on making purchases with your credit card, it’s important to know how to ask if the company accepts credit cards. This will help you know whether or not you’d be able to use your card or if you’d have to use cash.

While it’s important for you to know these phrases before you travel, it’s also a good idea to bring a translator with you during your travels. You can refer to a translation book, or there are plenty of handy smart phone applications to help you as well.

Beth Langdon is a Vietnamese teacher and freelance transcription consultant. Beth has helped many people develop dual-language documents in his website http://travel.voyagevietnam.co ( in french voyagevietnam.co)  to carry with them when traveling in Vietnam .