Hopefully the next time you travel to a Spanish-speaking country, everything goes smoothly and you have the best opportunities to practice what you’ve been learning. However, it’s always good to be prepared for the worst. Here, we’ll show you some emergency tourist vocabulary that might come in handy if you need to get help or explain a problem to a stranger.
Common emergency tourist vocabulary phrases
Just like how you might have learned the phrase ¿Dónde está el baño? to go try and find the bathroom, there are certain phrases that are just as necessary in emergency situations. You might need to think on your feet while adrenaline is pumping through you, so knowing these statements or questions by heart will be beneficial should you need to use them. Here are some good sentences to know:
- ¿Hablas inglés? – Do you speak English? Although you most likely want to practice your Spanish, in a true emergency, you’ll want to know how to ask if someone speaks English. That way, you can communicate clearly.
- Estoy perdido/a– I’m lost. Keep in mind that perdido is an adjective, which means you have to make it agree with your gender.
- ¡Socorro! ¡Ayuda! ¡Auxilio!- Help! Each country and region uses something different, but you’ll be understood regardless.
- ¡Está herido/a!- He/She is hurt! Since herido is an adjective, it needs to agree with the gender of whoever is hurt.
- ¿Cuándo sucedió?- When did it happen? This is more important to be able to understand than to say. Then, you can explain what information you know.
- Me robaron…– They stole…
In the middle of an emergency, you might be feeling anxious or frustrated, and the language barrier can make that even more frustrating. Hopefully these words are able to give you some peace of mind. In addition, most smartphones have translation apps that you can use to help get your point across. Finally, before traveling, make sure you know the emergency number for whatever country you’re in! In the United States it’s 911, but in Spain it’s 112. In some countries, you call different numbers depending on the emergency.