Last updated: 07:00 PM ET, Thu September 24 2015

Opinion Home | River Cruising From a Unique Point of View

  • Melanie Gravdal | September 24, 2015 7:00 PM ET

    Language Basics For Visiting European Countries

    Language Basics For Visiting European Countries

    PHOTO: Avalon Panorama. Courtesy Avalon Waterways.

    River cruising is one of travel’s hottest trends. And it’s no wonder … seeing the countryside from your stateroom, getting to know the land in an intimate journey, unpacking once, and tasting the local food and wine during included meals. Before you embark on your European river cruise, learn a few words from the regional language so you can mingle with the locals!

    Language: Bulgarian
    Where is this spoken: Bulgaria

    Good morning: Dubro utro
    Good evening: Duber vecher
    Hello: Zdraveyte
    Goodbye: Dovizhdane
    Please: Molya
    Thank you: Blagodarya or Mersi (informal)
    Yes: Da
    No: Ne


    Language: Czech
    Where is this spoken: Czech Republic

    Hello!: Nazdar!
    Good morning/afternoon: Dobry den
    Goodbye: Na schledanou
    Please: Prosim
    Thank you: Dekuji
    Yes: Ano
    No: Ne
    Have a nice day!: Hezky den!


    Language: Dutch
    Where is this spoken: Belgium, Holland

    Good morning: Goede morgen
    Good afternoon: Goede middag
    Good evening: Goede avond
    Goodbye: Tot Ziens
    Yes: Ja
    No: Nee
    Please: Alstublieft
    Thank you very much: Dank u wel


    Language: French
    Where is this spoken: Belgium, France

    Good morning/day (until 5 pm): Bonjour
    Good evening: Bonsoir
    Goodbye: Au revoir
    Please: S’il vous plaît
    Thank you: Merci
    Yes: Oui
    No: Non
    Have a nice day!: Bonne journée!


    Language: German
    Where is this spoken: Austria, Belgium, Germany

    Good morning: Guten Morgen
    Good day: Guten Tag
    Good evening: Guten Abend
    Please/You’re welcome: Bitte
    Thank you: Danke
    Yes: Ja
    No: Nein

    Language: Hungarian
    Where is this spoken: Hungary

    Good morning (until 9 am): Jóreggelt
    Good day: Jónapot
    Good evening: Jóestét
    Goodbye: Viszlát
    Please: Kérem
    Thank you: Karsarnarm
    Yes: Igan
    No: Nam

    Now that you know a few words of the local language, you’re ready to go! I also suggest downloading Google Translate before heading to Europe in case there are words you need to translate. But don’t worry, river cruise lines always have an English-speaking guide around!


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Melanie Gravdal River Cruising From a Unique Point of View

Melanie Gravdal Obsessed with all-things culture - from entertainment and the arts to customs and cuisine - Melanie Gravdal loves to travel, to see and experience new things, new people and new places that broaden her horizon and view on life. And, for the last two decades, Melanie has made traveling the world a central theme in her career as a communications professional. Working with travel and lifestyle professionals from around the globe, she provides public relations counsel and support ranging from strategic storytelling and branding messaging to pavement-pounding street marketing and special events. Originally from Iowa, Melanie now calls Southern California her home.
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