If you want to blend in with the locals then you should obvs ditch the map and restrain from photographing everything, but you should also try to brush up on your local lingo. You can do this in one of two ways: 1) being pretty hardcore and learning via app before you go, or 2) checking out this list of the most essential phrases. Seriously, learn these 12 lines and you'll be (nearly) covered in whichever Spanish-speaking country you're traveling through.
BTW, take the phonetic pronunciation with a grain of salt...
Do you have wifi here?
Spanish: Tienen wifi aquí?
Phonetic pronunciation: t-n-en wi-fi-aa-kee
This has gotta be one of the most important questions to learn how to say... How would you check-in on Facebook or update your Snapchat story without it?
Hi, I'm trying to find my Airbnb. Here's the address
Spanish: Hola! Estoy tratando de encontrar mi Airbnb. Esta es la dirección.
Phonetic pronunciation: OH/lah! S-toy tru-tan-dow deh n-con-trur mee Airbnb. S-tah s lah d-rehc-cion.
Staying in hotels is so 2015, but because Airbnbs tend to be in more residential areas, they might not be so simple to find. Taking the easy way out and pleading for directions is, though.
How can I find you on Instagram?
Spanish: Cómo estás en Instagram?
Phonetic pronunciation: Koe-moe eh-stahs n Instagram
It's the 21st century – asking for their Insta handle is as important (or more) than getting their name in the dating game. Why, it's the best way to stealthily stalk someone you wanna get to know better, so do your research with this cheeky phrase.
Where is the nearest beach?
Spanish: En dónde es la playa más cerca?
Phonetic pronounciation: Dohn-deh s laa plagia mass serr-cah
You could always check out Google Maps, but that'd be an opportunity lost to chat with local beach babes. Wow them with your pronunciation, then your new vacation swimmers.
Can you recommend a cool bar near here?
Spanish: Me recomiendas un bar cerca?
Phonetic pronounciation: Meh rreh- koe-mee-n-dahs oo-n bar sehr-kah
This is the perf question for when you're looking to start a conversation (since it's not strictly necessary, thanks to the internet...). Anyway, everyone loves a hip bar, so you really can't go wrong with this.
One beer, please
Spanish: Una cerveza, por favor.
Phonetic pronounciation: Oon-a sehr- veh-sah, pour fuh-vo-re
But don't stop at one... why not go for two, three or four? You could also try asking for drinks that are more relevant to each Spanish-speaking region:
If you are in Cuba, Nicaragua or Panama say: un ron (rum), por favor
If you are in Colombia say: un aguardiente (national liquor), por favor
If you are in Spain say: una sangria, por favor
If you are in Argentina, Chile or Uruguay say: un vino (wine), por favor
Want to dance?
Spanish: Quieres bailar?
Phonetic pronounciation: Kieh-rehs Bah-e-lahr
Admittedly this is a generalisation, but Spanish speakers tend to be pretty good dancers. Embrace the spirit (after a drink or two) and try your hand at salsa dancing. It's what vacay anecdotes are made of.
Sorry, I'm not interested. I have a boy/ girlfriend
Spanish: Lo siento, no estoy interesada. Tengo novio.
Phonetic pronounciation: Loh see-en-toh, no S-toy een-teh-rehs-a-daa. Ten-goh no-vee-oh
If you're not feeling his or her advances, you gotta be firm. It's nice they tried, but sometimes it's Tinder to the rescue.
I suck at Spanish, can you speak English?
Spanish: No soy bueno hablando español. ¿Hablas inglés?
Phonetic pronounciation: No soi buu-n-oh ah-blahn.doo ehs-pah-niol. Ah.blahs-een.glehs
Sometimes, when you're lost and tired in a new city, you're allowed to play the tourist card. Most Spanish speakers can speak at least a tiny bit of English, and failing that, there's always sign language.
Hey, you're beautiful ;)
Spanish: Eres muy linda!
Phonetic pronounciation: Ehr-es moo-e leen-dah
If someone compliments you saying this, you have two ways to respond: either “gracias” which means “thank you”, or “tú también” which means “you too”. This second option is a sure-fire way to kick off a flirtation...
Want to stay the night with me?
Spanish: Quieres quedarte esta noche conmigo?
Phonetic pronounciation: Kieh-rehs keh-dahr-teh- S-taa no-tcheh Koen-mee-goh
What can we say… Make sure to ask this question at the right moment, and only if you're sure. And maybe don't try it if you're staying at a hostel.
I'm too drunk, I need a taxi
Spanish: Bebí demasiado. Necesito un taxi.
Phonetic pronounciation: Veh-bee deh-mass-eeadoh. Neh-ceh-see-toh oo-n taxi
This happens to the best of us, so there's no shame to knowing your limits. But, pretty please don't get into a cab without your cellphone, wallet and/ or passport. Your minimal Spanish probs won't stretch to begging for a new passport at the embassy.