*Essential* Italian Travel Words

Travel Tips — By katiegreenaway on December 2, 2010 at 5:01 pm

Traveling in any foreign country can be a challenge if you are unfamiliar with the lingo of the land. Here are some phrases and words that are key to know when traveling in Italy.

Latrine(bathroom) Photo courtesy of Flickr

Bagno– Dove` il bagno?  A very popular and useful word in Italy.  If you don’t know this word, you clearly haven’t been to Italy yet.

Questo and Prossimo:
These two words were a lifesaver for my uncle who was here recently.  He had to take a train from Sesto Fiorentino to Statuto. He was befriended by a kind Italian lady that helped him figure out which train was going to Statuto; prossimo treno o questo treno.

il conto, per favore
–My father enjoyed this phrase immensely back in 2002…and 2007.  It means ‘the bill, please.’

Quanto costa?–How much is it?–A common question you should memorize when shopping in the market or anywhere in Italy.

Sto soltanto guardando.–I am just looking. –This phrase can be of use when you are browsing in a shop.  Italians tend to come and ask you if you would like to try something on or just to let you know they are there to answer your questions. If they ask you Posso aiutarla?, you can respond with, Sto soltanto guardando.

Vorrei...–I would like…-Is a helpful modal verb that can be of use when ordering food or shopping as well.  Vorrei un bicchiere di vino rosso.  My favorite sentence. 🙂

Accettate carte di credito?— Do you accept credit cards? –A common question that is asked in restaurants, shops, muesums, etc.

Catching a flight from Florence Photo courtesy of Flickr

Aeroporto-Airport–Here are some key words when you are at the airport.

Arrivo-arrival–This word looks very similar to English but being a traveler you want to be sure. A little piece of advice; if it looks similar to you in English, it more than likely means what you’re instincts are telling you.

Partenza–departure–This word looks kind of like the English word. Partenza to me sounds much better than departure though.  It sounds more exotic.  🙂

Bagaglio a mano–hand luggage or carry-on luggage–Not a word that I have said out loud before but it is written a lot in Italian airports. You will read it close to the security checkpoints and on the plane itself.

Imbarco--boarding–This is written on the departure screens when a flight has started to board. Usually it switches back and forth from English to Italian.

A che uscita è?–Which gate is it?–A great phrase to remember when for example you can’t read the boarding pass and perhaps the gates are set up in a odd way. I once sat at a gate for a long time until I discovered there was a similar gate in a different terminal.  Needless to say I am glad I knew this phrase.

Tags: italian language tips, italian words, travel


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