It’s that time of year again- that wonderful summer-time of year when people around the world go on vacation visiting new destinations. Since English tends to be the Lingua Franca internationally, it may very well come to pass that you need to use some travel English if you’re on vacation in another country (although we still recommend learning at least a few sentences in the language of the country you’re visiting).

With vacation in mind, here are some travel English words and phrases that you may need when going on a trip this summer. Bon voyage!

Catch a flight

Are you running late for your flight? Hopefully you catch it in time!

Much like catching a ball, we also catch flights. If you get to the airport two hours ahead of time (although some airports even recommend three hours ahead of time if you are traveling to/from the United States or internationally!), you’re sure to catch your flight on time. You may even have some time to kill (extra time you didn’t expect) at the airport, too!


People who are afraid of flying tend to be afraid of turbulence, too. Turbulence is when the airplane moves quickly up and down, usually due to bad weather, or if you’re flying over mountains.

Rest assured, planes very, very rarely crash due to turbulence. If you are a little afraid, do as I do (do the same I do) and think of turbulence like a rollercoaster. Or if flying really isn’t your thing, you can always order a glass of wine to help settle your nerves.

If you can imagine, some people even like turbulence! If you are one of those people, make sure you have turbulence ready in your travel English vocab!


What destination do you have in mind this year? Hawaii? Rome? Los Angeles? Whatever your destination, we’re sure you’re going to have a lovely time and you will definitely need plenty (lots, a lot) of travel English.

Make sure to send us a postcard when you get there!


Once you’ve reached your destination, we’re sure you don’t just want to sit in your hotel room all day. You’re going to take an excursion somewhere! An excursion is a small day trip or short trip to another town/beach/etc., that you do while you’re on vacation.

For example, if you’re going to London this summer, why not take an excursion to Stonehenge? You will also see this travel English word on advertising for day tours and outings at a tourist office.


An all-inclusive resort is exactly what it sounds like: it’s a resort where you pay for everything up front. Meals, drinks, and even some excursions are included in the one fixed price you pay to stay there.

If you don’t want to worry about a thing this summer, an all-inclusive resort might just be the thing for you.


While you’re on vacation, you’re a tourist. A tourist is someone who doesn’t live there and is touring around.

If you can’t afford (pay for something) a vacation this year, why not “play tourist” in your own town? Go to all the touristy places you’ve always wanted to visit but never have! An added perk of playing tourist in your town is that you get to sleep in your own bed at the end of the day.

(Isn’t it funny how when we travel places, we never think of ourselves as tourists at all, and want to avoid all the touristy places??)


While you’re a tourist, you’ll probably be doing lots of sightseeing. Sightseeing is exactly what it sounds like — seeing the sights!

From the Coliseum to the Roman Forum to Vatican City, Rome offers lots of sightseeing opportunities (for example). Where do you plan on going sightseeing this year?

What are some of your favorite vacation memories? Do you have any favorite travel English phrases you need to use all the time? Share them with us in the comments below!

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Erin Duffin lives in Hamburg, is an English teacher,  yoga instructor, and may have missed a flight once leaving Rome while sitting at the does that even happen??? 🙂 🙂   

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