German Phrases For Dummies
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Traveling in German-speaking countries can be confusing if you can't read the signs or understand the instructions you're given. Learning a few useful travel-related words and phrases in German before you begin traveling can save you time and reduce your frustration level.

Here are a few general travel-related terms that everyone should know before making the big trip.

Reisepass (passport)
der Koffer [m] (suitcase)
der Rucksack (backpack)
das Gepäck (baggage)
flugschein [m] (airplane ticket
Zoll [m] (customs)
die Fahrkarte (ticket)
die Reservierung (reservation)

Making or changing travel arrangements

While traveling in a German-speaking country, you often need to make or change your travel arrangements. Whether you are scheduling a flight or a train trip, the following words can help you with the reservation and ticket-buying process.

Rückfahrkarte (round trip ticket)
einfache Fahrkarte (one-way ticket)
Platz(Sitz) (seat)
Bahnhof (train station)
der Zug (train)
S-Bahn [f] (local train)
der Flug [m] (flight)
Flughafen (airport)

The following phrases are some of the most common questions that you might need to ask when making travel arrangements in German-speaking countries.

  • Ich möchte eine Fahrkarte reservieren. (I would like to reserve a ticket.)

  • Wir möchten zwei Flugtickets nach New York kaufen. (We want to buy two plane tickets to New York.)

  • Wie viel kostet die Fahrkarte? (How much does the ticket cost?)

  • Gibt es eine Studenten-ermäßigung? (Is there a discount for students?)

  • Wir möchten bar bezahlen. (We want to pay cash.)

  • Dieses ist mein Handgepäck. (This is my carry-on bag.)

  • Wann kommen wir in Berlin an? (When do we arrive in Berlin?)

Dealing with the hotel

Although many of the larger hotels in German-speaking countries have English-speaking staff, you rarely find that in the smaller hotels and in the smaller towns. The following words can help you when booking a hotel.

Dusche [f] (shower)
Einzelzimmer [n] (single room)
Klimaanlage [f] (air conditioning)
Rezeption [f] (reception desk)
Schlüssel [m] (key)
das Bett (bed)
die Betttücher (sheets)
das Kissen (pillow)

The following phrases can help you make or change your hotel reservations.

  • Welches Hotel ist am billigsten? (Which hotel is the cheapest?)

  • Wie weit ist das Hotel vom Bahnhof entfernt? (How far is the hotel from the train station?)

  • Haben Sie noch ein Zimmer frei? (Are there rooms available?)

  • Bis wann muss man sich abmelden? (What time is checkout?)

  • Ich möchte ein Zimmer mit Dusche. (I'd like a room with a shower.)

  • Ich möchte ein Einzelbett. (I'd like a single bed.)

  • Kann ich bitte noch eine Decke haben? (Can I have another blanket, please?)

  • Herein! (Come in!)

Other travel words

When talking about traveling in German-speaking countries, it helps to know the right verbs to express what you want to do. The following are common German travel-related verbs.

reservieren (to reserve)
absagen (to cancel)
ankommen (to arrive)
mieten (to rent)
abfahren (to leave)
bezahlen (to pay)
abholen (to pick up someone [from the airport])

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