Monthly Archives: August 2011

Hiring a car in Spain

to hire a car:  alquilar un coche
to collect:  recoger
to drop off:  dejar
satellite navigation:  el sistema de navegación
air conditioning:  el aire acondicionado
a car:  un coche
an estate car:  un coche familiar
a van:  una furgoneta
a child’s car seat:  un asiento de bebé
boot:  el maletero
keys:  las llaves
driving licence:  el carné de conducir Continue reading

How to improve your Spanish listening skills

Listening skills are perhaps the most difficult to improve when learning a foreign language. You may not realise that your listening is improving as you still cannot understand everything, but IT IS gradually improving. The more Spanish you listen to and the more often, the faster your listening WILL improve. Here are the best ways to help your listening skills in Spanish:

 

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How to type Spanish characters on an English keyboard

I am often asked by clients how they can type Spanish accents easily on an English computer. Although it is easy to get away with typing without any accents, it is a good idea to include them if possible as this will help you to remember which syllable to stress in a word and also because it can cause confusion; si = if, whereas = yes. el = the (for a masculine noun) but él = him/he.
Here are the easiest ways to add accented letters when typing in Spanish:

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Watch out for “False Friends” in Spanish!

In Spanish there are many false cognates – words that look the same as an English word but they have a completely different meaning. This can be confusing and may lead to misunderstanding. Here are the most commonly used “false friends” to watch out for.

1. actual in Spanish means current/present. (To say “actual” in Spanish, use real / verdadero)

2. asistir = to attend NOT to assist (ayudar)

3. atender = to take care of/attend to NOT to attend (asistir)

4. bizarro = brave NOT bizarre/strange (raro / extraño) Continue reading

Learn with native French, German, Italian & Portuguese tutors

One-to-one Skype lessons with native French, German, Italian & Portuguese tutors

We are delighted to offer one-to-one language tuition via Skype with qualified native Spanish, French, Italian, Portuguese and German tutors. We have carefully selected the most talented and enthusiastic native tutors to continue providing a high quality tuition service. Continue reading

Tips for developing good business practice in Spain

Build successful relationships

Spanish people like doing business with people they know and trust, therefore it is a good idea to spend enough time getting to know and building rapport with your colleagues. This is crucial for good business practice in Spain.
Once you have built up a good relationship with someone, this will continue regardless of whether you stay with their company as they have got to know you as a person rather than the company you work for. Continue reading

How to use “Vaya” in Spanish

The most popular “Vaya” expressions are:

¡Vaya! Oh dear! / Oh my God! / Fancy that!
Vaya, vaya, vaya. Well, well, well.
¡Que te vaya bien! Hope it goes well (used when parting)
¡Vaya con Díos! Good-bye (an old-fashioned way of saying good-bye. Literally “Go with God.”) Continue reading