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The most important vocabulary to know during your trip in Argentina

If you already speak some Spanish, you'll have no problems communicating or striking up a conversation during your trip to Argentina. Some words have a weird prononciation but they'll quickly become second nature.

Spanish, official language

Even though Quecha and Guarani are still spoken by indigenous communities in the north of the country, Spanish is the tongue that's spoken across Argentina. If you want to be able to chat and get on with the Argentinians, you'll need to learn some basic Spanish. What's more the Argentinians love talking to and having a laugh with foreign visitors. It would be a shame to miss out on such opportunities due a language barrier. If you don't speak Spanish, do your best to learn some basic vocab and expressions before you leave. Just learning the minimum will help you get by on a daily basis. Don't be shy, the Argentinians will love that you're making the effort and won't take the mickey if you make mistakes or if your accent isn't up to scratch. And you can always pull out your English-Spanish dictionary.

In Buenos Aires

A different accent

If you're used to the Spanish that's spoken in Spain or the rest of South America, you could be thrown off kilter by the Agentinian accent. For example, they often don't pronounce the final 's' in words. Argentinians often swallow this last letter. It may sound wierd at first, but you'll find yourself doing so too! 'R' or double 'R' s are pronounced differently depending on the region. Sometimes it's forced, other times it just glides off the tongue. The most surprising difference between Spanish here and that which is spoken in Madrid, Mexico or Bogota, is the prononciation of 'll' and 'y'. In Buenos Aires and elsewhere, 'll' is pronounced as a 'ch'. You'll need to bear this in mind in order to understand. For example, if you want to ask someone their name ("commo te llamas") you need to say "como te chamas". Argentinians who hear foreigners speak like a cowboy from the 'pampas' will be in 7th Heaven.

Basic expressions / Common Words

Good morning / Good eveningBuenos días / Buenas tardes
How are you?Cómo esta ?
Fine, thank you, and you?Muy bien, gracias, y usted ?
I understand / I don't understandEntiendo / No entiendo
Thank you (very much)Muchas gracias
Excuse meDiscúlpame
My name is...Me llamo...
No thank youNo gracias
Yes / NoSí / No
You're welcomeDe nada


How much is it?¿Cuánto es?
It is very cheapEs muy barato
It is too expensive!Es demasiado caro
Can you lower the price?¿Puede bajar el precio?
I would like to buy ... this one!Quisiera comprar… eso, éste
I like it / I don't like itMe encanta / Aborrezco
I'm just looking around.Sólo estoy mirando


I would like to go to ...Quisiera ir...
I would like to rent ...Quisiera alquilar


Where is ...? / How can I get to ...?¿Dónde está? ¿ Cómo ir a...?
Train stationEstación
CentreCentro de la ciudad
Is it close / far?Es cerca / lejos ?
Straight aheadTodo recto
Left / RightIzquierda / Derecha
North / South / East / WestNorte / Sur / Este/ Oueste

Numberssieben, acht, neun, zehn

one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine, tenUn, dos, tres, cuatro, cinco, seis, siete, ocho, nueve, diez
twenty, thirty, forty, fifty, sixtyVeinte, treinta, cuaranta, cincuenta, sesenta
seventy, eighty, ninetySetenta, ochenta, noventa
One hundredCiento

Hours/Dates and daysDienstag, Mittwoch, Donnerstag, Freitag, Samstag, Sonntag

What time is it?¿Qué hora es?
Today (morning/midday/evening)Hoy (mañana/mediodía/tarde)
Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday, SundayLunes, martes, miércoles, jueves, viernes, sábado, domingo
I am here on vacationEstoy de vacaciones / de viaje
I am here for businessEstoy aquí por trabajo

Time to eat!

I am hungry / I am thirstyTengo hambre / Tengo sed
Enjoy¡Buen provecho!
It was delicious¡Estaba delicioso!
What can you recommend?¿Qué recomienda?
I am vegeterianSoy vegetariano
Not spicy please (I don't like spices)¡Sin picante! (No me gusta el picante)
It's too hot¡Es demasiado caliente!
I am allergicSoy alérgico
Sea foodMarisco
I would like...Quisiera…
Tee / CoffeeTé / café
Beer / WineCerveza / vino
The bill, pleaseLa cuenta por favor

Health / Emergency / Security

I need to see a doctor.Necesito de ver un medico
Call an ambulance / Call 911Llame un médico / ambulancia
Where is the hospital?¿Dónde está el hospital?
I do not feel very goodNo me siento muy bien
It hurts hereMe duele aquí
Where can I find the restrooms?¿Dónde están los aseos?
I'm lostMe he perdido


Have a nice day !Buen día
David Debrincat
459 contributions
Updated 26 October 2018
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