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9 Spanish Phrases to Know When You Arrive at the Airport

Posted in: Cuenca Ecuador, Ecuador Travel, Language Learning, Living in Ecuador, Traveling Kids

You have just landed at the Cuenca airport and you are anxious to begin your Ecuador adventure.

But first, you wonder what you will say to people trying to help you. Everyone speaks Spanish, a language you are not familiar with.

So what will you say?

Here are a few simple phrases you need to know when you arrive at the airport.

spanish phrases for the airport

Arriving at a Spanish airport? Here are the phrases you’ll need…

9 Spanish Expressions for the Airport

1. Donde está el baño? [Where is the bathroom] That is pretty important.  We all want to know how to say that! It wouldn’t be very nice to be stranded at an airport and not be able to ask where the bathroom is.

2. Cuando sale el vuelo a ____? [When does flight to ____ leave?] That is also important! You would be in quite a pickle if you didn’t know when your flight left. All you have to fill in is the name of the place your going.

3. Quiero pedir ____.  [I want to order___.] This is for when you want to order food at one of the little fast food booths  You can’t go very long without a snack, at least I can’t!

4. Gracias [Thank you] You could use it after you order something. Then the employee might say “De nada” which means “your welcome”.

5.  Puerta numero ____ [Gate number____.] You will hear this on the loudspeakers at the airport. The numbers one to ten are : uno, dos, tres, cuatro, cinco, seis, siete, ocho, nueve, diez.

Arriving in a Spanish Country

Arriving in a Spanish Country

6.  Disculpe [Excuse me.] This is very important for asking someone something and not sounding like a rude gringo.

7. Puede Ayudarme? [Can you help me?] This is also important!

8. Donde puedo recojer mis maletas? [Where can I pick up my baggage?]

9. Que hora es? [What time is it?]

Well, I hope that will help you some. I will be doing these Spanish phrases every month. You can print them off and keep them in your pocket. I hope they help! Sometimes a couple of travel tips can make a good trip great!

Happy travels!

P.S. – What phrases would you add to the list? Please add them in the comments below!

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Meet the Author

Drew Haines is an animal enthusiast, travel writer, and content marketer. She loves to share her passion through her writing. She is the founder and owner of EverywhereWild Media, EverywhereWild, and co-founder and owner of JustBirding. She also writes on GringosAbroad and Storyteller Travel. She lived in Ecuador for 6 years and explored the Galapagos Islands. Currently based in N.S., Canada.

18 comments… add one
  • Svetlana Apr 2, 2018, 5:33 pm

    Hola! ) Check my video. I have collected 55 useful phrases referring to airport and travelling by plane.

  • Russ Younger Mar 31, 2014, 10:57 pm

    If anyone has access to Apps you can download one of the “translators”. You say the word in English and it responds in the language you have chosen(Japanese, Spanish, etc). You could even say the word or phrase and have the Ecuadorian listen to the question or statement. All you need is an iPhone or iPad and an internet connection.

  • Robert Pogue Mar 8, 2014, 1:04 pm

    Thank you for the phrases. I know it would be extra work for you but would you be able to include some typical responses? For example after I ask for the bathroom, I don’t know if I would be able to understand what I am told. Also is it polite to ask if the Ecuadorian speaks or understands English?

  • Valentine Dumoulin Sep 26, 2013, 7:33 pm

    Thank you we will use those phrases when we get to the airport in quito and cuenca

  • Joyce Uzcategui Sep 25, 2013, 10:00 am

    So people can hear the way to say your Spanish phrases, you could video tape you saying them or there may be a way to just add sound to your blog so you could say the phrase. Do a video like, I think it is called “Man on the Street” where you can ask an Ecuadorian to say your phrase with the correct accent. Just a thought.

  • Nancy Nuce Sep 11, 2013, 8:36 am

    Thank you for these. I am leaving for Panama next week and some of them will come in very handy.

    I would also like to know how to say, “Where is the rental car location?”

  • Abinas Jagernauth Mar 22, 2013, 10:58 am

    I was told that the Spanish culture is more formal than what we are accustomed to in the US and Canada and that it is important to refer to individuals as señor, señora, or señorita. Is this true in Ecuador?

  • george Mar 21, 2013, 12:34 pm

    How about the pronunciation of the phrase or word,… Sounds like??


  • Lou Lutz Mar 20, 2013, 6:36 pm

    Hello Drew, Lou is my nick name. I respond by that name on the internet. I just copied the 9 expressions. Now I need to know how to say them. Maybe you could work on that next time and do a few expressions at a time. I would suspect some are pronounced as they sound. I know not all .Example: the word Puede. I would venture to say in that word, It would sound like it started out with an s. am I right?
    Thanks once again for the help will be looking for a few more simple lessons. Love from both of us to you all.

  • Dianna janas Feb 28, 2013, 10:56 am

    Wonderful advice, I wish I had these when we arrived in Cuenca 🙂 we are on our way back to snowy cold Canada, but will be making Cuenca our home, as we purchased a home here. I hope we can meet in person when we move, your great grampa is in my best friends congregation.

    • Drew Haines Mar 1, 2013, 4:07 pm

      I hope you love it here in Ecuador!

      Thanks for your comment.

  • Charlene Davies Feb 23, 2013, 5:46 am

    Nice work, Drew. I wish I had found this before I made my trip to Ecuador last month. Thank you

  • Kim Feb 22, 2013, 12:37 pm

    Thank you-I will print these out and keep them in my purse. 🙂

  • Marlene Kimball Feb 22, 2013, 10:29 am

    I like this blog, very helpful for when I do arrive in EC. Thanks and keep up the good wor

  • Kathy Feb 19, 2013, 4:15 pm

    Thank you for the 9 expressions.
    I am such a gringo so I ask that for the next expressions you offer would you possibly be able to also spell them as they would sound to speak as I am just starting to learn Spanish.

  • Nana Feb 18, 2013, 7:06 pm

    Very good blog, Drew. Expressions worth learning.

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