In this article you will learn the words and phrases en español that you will need to tomar un vuelo (to take a flight).
On your way to el aeropuerto (the airport), the taxi driver will certainly ask you:
- ¿A qué terminal va? (Which terminal are you going to?)
Once you are inside la terminal (the terminal), you will look for las pantallas (the screens) containing información sobre los vuelos (information about the flights).
CHEATERS TIP ALERT: remember that you can ask a question by simply changing your intonation… you could ask where an information screen is by saying: “¿Una pantalla de información sobre los vuelos?”
How to check in
Now, let’s go to los mostradores (check-in counters). Most likely. the lovely person behind el mostrador will ask you:
- ¿A dónde viaja? (Where are you traveling to?)
You might respond: A Cancún.
Then, they will ask:
- ¿Cuál es su clave de reservación? (What is your reservation code?)
In case you are unable to tell reservation code because you don’t know your alphabet in Spanish, no worries, we have a video about it!
Now if you simply don’t know your clave de reservación (reservation code), you may provide them with el nombre del pasajero (the name of the passenger).
Another set of relevant questions you will be asked when checking in includes:
- ¿Me permite su pasaporte? (May I have your passport?)
- ¿Va a documentar equipaje? (Are you going to check luggage?) — In Spain, instead of documentar, people say facturar
Maybe you’re not checking in any maleta (bag)… maybe you are traveling light because you only have equipaje de mano (carry-on luggage) with you.
The lovely person behind the desk will work their magic and give you your pase de abordar (boarding pass), a most precious document that contains información muy importante (very important information), such as:
- destino (destination)
- número de vuelo (flight number)
- número de asiento (seat number)
- sala de abordar (boarding hall)
Going through security
Once you have your pase de abordar (boarding pass) with you, the next step is pasar seguridad (going through security).
You should show your pasaporte and pase de abordar.
Afterwards, security staff will ask you to poner objetos metálicos y electrónicos en la bandeja (to place metallic objects and electronic devices in a tray).
Once you have gone through seguridad (security), you are in!
After security, you will surely go to a duty-free shop and try on all the perfumes and samples of free spirits… because we all do that right?
Then, you head to la sala de abordar (the boarding hall), you wait for el abordaje (boarding) and when it’s your turn abordar (board the place), you will be asked for your pase de abordar and pasaporte once again.
You might hear: “Por favor abra su pasaporte en la pagina de la foto.” (Please open your passport on the page where the picture is.)
Once you are en el avión (on the plane), all the phrases you might hear inside the cabin are pretty much guessable: literally, the sobrecargo (flight attendant) will be mimicking what you have to do, i.e. fasten your seat belt and will show you where the exits are located, etc. Therefore, I won’t go there…
Important note: since las aerolíneas (airlines) don’t give you peanuts anymore, you should always ask ¿es gratis? (Is it free?)
The time has come to aterrizar (land).
If you crossed a border, you’re going to pasar por migración (go through passport control).
The immigration agent might ask you for el motivo de viaje (the motive of your trip); to which you will reply: “Turismo” (tourism) OR you may say, “Negocios” (Business).
Now, if you have equipaje documentado (checked luggage), you will find a pantalla (screen), where you will find the number of the corresponding banda de equipaje.
Al recoger tu equipaje (when picking up your luggage), you might have to pray that you don’t have any equipaje extraviado (missing luggage).
After you have collected your luggage, you proceed to la aduana (customs). Unless you have more than 10 thousand dollars on you, you will have nada que declarar (nothing to declare)!
Find the signs and… tan tan! ¡HAS LLEGADO A TU DESTINO! (You have reached your destination!)
FREE Spanish Training
Now you have the vocabulary and expressions to start your travel experience in a Latin American country. We have more videos about traveling topics and much more on our Spring Spanish channel, so feel free to check them out!
Now, if you're ready to take it a step further and get serious about learning Spanish, we have a free Spanish training on our website where you'll discover the method we use in our Spring Spanish Academy to teach students to speak fluent Spanish. You also get some free sample Spanish lessons there that come straight from our Academy!