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One of the most important things to prioritize when learning a new language is to build up your vocabulary.
You need to familiarize yourself with the most common words in any language, which are used daily by native language speakers.
Here is a list of 100 words to learn in a foreign language. Memorizing these basic phrases will help you achieve your ultimate language goals.
One of the first words that anyone needs to learn in any language is the most common way to greet people and bid them farewell.
If you want to make friends in a foreign language, you should know that sometimes, how you say something is as important as saying something correctly.
Politely phrasing your requests is very important in almost all cultures in the world. The way to be polite is to make sure you use the different versions of these words correctly.
Almost every culture in the world has a word which means “please”. It is the polite phrase to use when you want to ask for something or when you need to request for help.
Adding this phrase to any request will make people more apt to listen to you and accommodate your request.
It will make people think better of you, as they will remember you as the “polite foreigner” who was trying to learn their language.
As important as it is to know how to politely ask for help, it’s just as important to know how to express gratitude for the help that you received.
Whether it’s a shopkeeper who sold you a t-shirt, a waiter who brought you a drink, or a person who took the time to tell you where the train station was – they all deserve your thanks. Learning how to thank them in their native language will surely make them smile.
It is always a good idea to know how to politely respond to a “thank you”, so make sure the proper phrase for “you’re welcome” is on your polite language words list.
While you don’t mean to give offense or hurt someone, you could do so inadvertently. It’s always a good idea to know how to make an acceptable apology.
You should know how to politely interrupt a conversation or to call someone’s attention. Many cultures have a phrase similar to “excuse me” that you can also inform people you are passing by.
In some countries, it is very important to show respect for other people, especially if they are older than you or are of higher status. These countries will often have several phrases by which you can respectfully address different people.
It’s a good idea to work with a native language speaking tutor who can explain to you the proper ways to respectfully address people. You don’t want to be the “rude foreigner”.
Most countries and cultures have certain short phrases where you can say whether you agree with a statement or not. In English, this is “yes” or “no.”
Before you engage someone in a conversation, you need to introduce yourself to them.
After you’ve introduced yourself, you can use one of the following two phrases to ask the person you are talking to about their name.
After exchanging names, it’s usually considered polite to acknowledge that you are happy to meet and make a new friend.
After the introductions have been made, you now want to start and keep a conversation going.
You should ask the person you are talking to about their current state of being.
If you are traveling to a country where they speak a different language than you, you should know how to ask for help.
Know how to ask for directions. Learn how to say “I am looking for” in a foreign language to help you ask other people how you can get to a specific place.
This is a phrase that you can use to ask about something you see that is unfamiliar. For example, if you see a cute stuffed toy of a character you don’t recognize or if you see a delicious looking sandwich, you can ask “what is that?”
Knowing how to ask someone where they live in a foreign language is a great way to learn more about them and increase your knowledge about the country that you are in.
A conversation is an exchange of information. If you are curious about the person you are talking to, they are probably wondering about you as well. Volunteering information, such as where you are from, will keep the conversation flowing.
This is another good conversation starter. Find out how you can ask what a person’s job is in the language you are trying to learn.
One of the most interesting ways to learn a language is to watch television shows and movies in that language. Talking about what you’ve watched is also a great conversation starter, so learn how to ask someone if they have watched the same show or movie that you have.
If you are a music lover, listening to music in a foreign language might be more your jam. Asking a native speaker if they also listen to a band that you love is a good icebreaker.
Locals love to talk about the fun things you can do in their city or country. They can provide you with a lot of tips about what to do and how to get around. This is why it’s a good idea to learn how to ask them if they have visited a certain area.
You should know how to ask the opinion of locals about what you should do or try while you are in the area.
When in a foreign country, it’s a good idea to know how you can ask for help getting around.
Similar to “I am looking for”, but this is specific to when you are looking for a place, like a hotel or a restaurant.
You should know how to ask about your current location in a foreign language.
Learn the phrases or words to ask for directions to a specific place.
Learn how to ask about the distance from where you are to where you want to go.
If you are having a hard time understanding the verbal directions that they are trying to give you, this might be an easier way to get over the language barrier.
If you are going to catch a time-specific event, like a play or a departing train, it’s a good idea to be able to ask what time it is.
If you are waiting for a specific event or show, you should know how to ask around about the starting time.
If you go to a museum or store and find it’s closed, you should be able to ask the locals about the opening time.
Of course, if you learn how to ask for directions in a foreign language, you need to learn how to understand those directions.
Some of the most important places you will need to go while traveling in a foreign country are these transportation hubs. You also need to know what certain modes of transportation are called.
As we mentioned, “where is” is an important phrase or word to know in a foreign language. It’s also important, however, that you know what the name of the place you are looking for is.
If there is a specific name for the place, like McDonald’s or the Ritz, you can ask where those specific places are. But if all you want is someplace to eat or sleep and you don’t have a specific place in mind, you should know how to say the following.
You will need to know the following phrases and words to enjoy yourself while out and about in a foreign country.
You should be able to know the word or phrase to point out something that interests you.
If you have come to a store looking for a specific item, you should know the word or phrase that will allow you to ask for it.
This is similar to “what is that”, but the implication here is that you want the salesperson to bring the item closer to you, maybe let you handle it.
Know how to ask about the cost of things and maybe bargain for a better rate.
Depending on the country, sometimes what you thought you would find in say a grocery is actually sold elsewhere. Know how to ask a local about where you can find a specific item.
If you are dining out at a restaurant, you should be able to say these four phrases in the local language.
These phrases can be used to ask a local about the activities that are available to you in the area.
You should know how to count in the local language. At the very least, it will help you keep track of your money and also help you understand time and address directions.
You should know the following words and phrases which indicate dates as they will help you get around in a foreign country. At the very least, knowing these words will ensure that you don’t miss anything important like a flight or your check out time at your hotel.
In English, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, and so on.
In English, January, February, March, and so on.
You should learn how they call seasons because it will help you make travel plans. If they say it is “winter” you want to be prepared with cold-weather clothing or if they say it is “summer” you know now is the time ask about visiting the beach.
There’s no shame in admitting that you are just learning a language and admitting so will make it easier for people to know how to help you.
These are words to learn in a foreign language that can help keep you safe on your travels.
So now that you know some of the most basic words and phrases that you need to learn in a foreign language, you should compile your own language words list.
Go over the basic phrases that you need to make yourself understood with a native language speaking tutor. Your tutor will help you learn how to pronounce the words correctly and give you some tips as to how and when you should use certain phrases.
Remember, practice makes perfect, so try and use these words and phrases in conversations with your tutor or with friends who speak the language.
Hello, Goodbye, Hi, Hiya, Bye, Hey
Basic greetings (Hi, Hello), Polite phrases used every day (Thank you, Welcome), Basic answers to simple questions (Yes, No), Introductions (My name is, What's your name), Basic conversation starters (I need help, What is your professional), Basic directions (Left, Right), Modes of transportation (Left, Right).
Do you speak__? I am learning to speak _. Can you repeat that? Can you speak slower? I don’t understand
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