Useful Chinese Phrases for Travelers

China has a long history and is rich in natural beauty, ancient culture and exciting cities to visit. You can see magnificent mountains and rivers, interesting animals and plants, numerous historical sites, traditional Chinese opera, music and dance, and architecture ranging from classical Chinese to late 19th and early 20th century Russian to post-modern skyscrapers. And then there are China’s many different cuisines! So, to make traveling in China easier, here are some helpful phrases.

EnglishPinyin/ Characters
Travel- Going Somewhere
HelloNǐ hǎo 
你好。
Could you please tell me where Happy Valley is?Qǐngwèn huānlè gǔ zài nǎlǐ
请问欢乐谷在哪里?
How much is the ticket?Ménpiào duōshǎo qián 
门票多少钱?
Hotel
I need a single room/double room.Wǒ yào yīgè dān rén fáng/shuāngrén fáng 
我要一个单人房/双人房。
I am going to check out nowWǒ xiànzài yào tuì fángle 
我现在要退房了。
Transportation
Where is the metro/taxi station?Dìtiě zhàn/dí shì zhàn zài nǎ’er? 
地铁站/的士站在哪儿?
I need go to the airport.Wǒ yào qù jīchǎng 
我要去机场。
Shopping 
How much is it?Zhège duōshǎo qián? 
这个多少钱?
It’s too expensive!Tài guìle! 
太贵了!
Can you make it cheaper?Néng piányí diǎn ma? 
能便宜点吗?
Other useful phrases
Thank you!Xièxiè
谢谢!
You are welcome!Bú yònɡ xiè
不用谢!
Sorry, I don’t understand.Bù hǎoyìsi, wǒ tīng bù dǒng 
不好意思,我听不懂。
I am AmericanWǒ shì měiguó rén
我是美国人。
Goodbye!Zàijiàn 
再见!

Travel- Going Somewhere

When we are in a new place, especially in a foreign country, it is easy to become confused. If you can ask for help from others in Chinese, people will admire you.

1. 你好 Nǐ hǎo Hello/Hi
(Nǐ hǎo)is commonly used in greetings. It can be taken as “hello/hi.” Although most Chinese people understand the English “hello/hi” and can reply in the same way to you, they appreciate hearing it Chinese.

2. 请问欢乐谷在哪里?(Qǐngwèn huānlè gǔ zài nǎlǐ)
Could you please tell me where Happy Valley is?

We have taken the Shenzhen amusement park Happy Valley as an example. However, when you need directions you can ask someone for help by using this structure: Qǐngwèn [name of the place] zài nǎlǐ? The literal translation is as follows – and note the different sentence structure from English: Excuse me, Happy Valley, where is it?

3. 门票多少钱?( Ménpiào duōshǎo qián)
How much is the ticket?
In most historic places and cultural sites you will need a ticket to enter.

Hotel

Being able to arrange a hotel room brings a sense of comfort!

4. 我要一个单人房/双人房 (Wǒ yào yīgè dān rén fáng/shuāngrén fang)
I need a single room/double room.
In fact, “standard room” is often used to describe single room
Standard room – 标准间 (Biāozhǔn jiān)

5. 我现在要退房了 (Wǒ xiànzài yào tuì fángle)
I am going to check out now

Transportation

6. 地铁站/的士站在哪儿? (Dìtiě zhàn/dí shì zhàn zài nǎ’er?)
Where is the metro/taxi station?
Metro and taxi are the most common forms of transportation in cities.

7. 我要去机场(Wǒ yào qù jīchǎng)
I need go to the airport.
It is important to know how to say this to a taxi driver!

Shopping

You may buy a gift or souvenir, so learn to ask the price. But Chinese expect to bargain, so be prepared.

8. 这个多少钱?(Zhège duōshǎo qián?)
How much is it?

9. 太贵了!(Tài guìle!)
It’s too expensive!

10. 能便宜点吗?(Néng piányí diǎn ma?)
Can you make it cheaper?

Other useful Chinese travel phrases

11.谢谢!(Xièxiè) Thank you

12. 不用谢! (Bùyòng xiè ) You are welcome.
Wǒ shì měiguó rén

13. Wǒ shì měiguó rén; wǒ shì yīng guó rén;wǒ shì dé guó rén 
我是美国人; 我是英国人; 我是德国人。
I am American; I am Bristish Man; I am German.

14. 不好意思,我听不懂。( Bù hǎoyìsi, wǒ tīng bù dǒng)
Sorry, I don’t understand.

15. 再见!(Zàijiàn)
Goodbye!
Most Chinese, however, know “bye bye” and use it frequently.