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Chinese Lesson – At the Airport Posted by on Apr 17, 2017 in sightseeing, travel

So far, we’ve learned some useful Chinese air travel vocabulary, as well as how to buy a plane ticket in Chinese. Now that you’ve got your ticket and some important words/phrases down, it’s time to head to the airport. Today we’ll learn how to get a cab, check in for your flight, find your gate, and more in this Chinese lesson – at the airport.

Getting to the Airport

First up, you’ll need to get yourself to the airport. In most Chinese cities, it’s possible to get to the airport on the subway or by public bus. It doesn’t require a whole lot of Chinese to buy a bus/subway ticket, though, so here’s a sample conversation of catching a cab to the airport:

nǐ hǎo

nǐ hǎo, qù nǎ’er
Hello, where are you going?

wǒ yào qù fēi jī chǎng. kě yǐ ma
I want to to go to the airport. Is that OK?

kě yǐ. nǎ ge háng zhàn
Sure. What terminal?

wǒ kàn, shì 2 hào
Let me see, it’s #2.

hǎo de, zǒu ba
Alright, let’s go

dào le, zhè shì 2 hào háng zhàn
We’re there, this is terminal #2.

hǎo, duō shǎo qián
Alright, how much?

qī shí kuài
70 kuai.

wǒ yǒu yī bǎi
I have 100.

zhǎo nǐ sān shí kuài
I’ll give you back 30 kuai.

hǎo, xiè xiè
Great, thanks!

bù yòng, màn zǒu
You’re welcome, take care.

Checking In

Chinese Lesson - At the Airport

The incredibly modern Shenzhen airport.

Now that you’ve made it to the airport, it’s time to check in for your flight. Here’s a short sample conversation between a customer and an airline employee:

xià wèi gù kè
Next customer.

nǐ hǎo

nǐ hǎo, qù nǎ lǐ jīn tiān
Hello, where are you going today?

wǒ qù xī’ān
I’m going to Xi’an.

qǐng gěi wǒ nǐ de hù zhào
Please give me your passport

gěi nǐ le
Here you are.

nǐ yǒu tuō yùn xíng lǐ ma
Do you have checked baggage?

yǒu yī gè
I have one.

qǐng bǎ nǐ de xíng lǐ fàng zài zhè lǐ
Please put your luggage here.

bù hǎo yì si, nǐ de xíng lǐ tài zhòng le
Sorry, your luggage is too heavy.

zěn me bàn
What can we do?

nǐ xū yào jiāo fèi
You need to pay the fee.

duō shǎo qián
How much is it?

wǒ kàn, shì yī bǎi wǔ shí kuài
Let me see, it’s 150 kuai.

gěi nǐ liǎng bǎi kuài
Here’s 200 kuai.

shāo děng yī xià. zhǎo nǐ wǔ shí kuài
Please wait a minute. I’ll give you back 50 kuai.

hǎo, zhè shì nǐ de dēng jī pái
Alright, this is your boarding pass.

xiè xiè. qǐng wèn, shì nǎ ge dēng jī kǒu?
Thanks. Excuse me, what gate is it?

dēng jī kǒu shì A17.
It’s gate A17.

hǎo, xiè xiè nǐ
Great, thank you.

méi guān xì. zhù nǐ lǚ yóu yú kuài
You’re welcome. I hope you have a pleasant trip.

Boarding Your Flight

Once you’ve made it through security and found your gate, hopefully you’ve got a few minutes to sit down and relax. That is, if you can find a seat. Chinese airports tend to be busy and crowded. You’ll want to listen for an announcement for when your flight is boarding. It might be something like:

háng bān hào CA1231 zhèng zài dēng jī
Flight Number CA1231 is now boarding.

Flying is hard work, isn’t it? Especially in another language. The next post in the series will be all about the flight – finding your seat, ordering food/drinks, asking for things like an extra pillow and more.

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About the Author: sasha

Sasha is an English teacher, writer, photographer, and videographer from the great state of Michigan. Upon graduating from Michigan State University, he moved to China and spent 5+ years living, working, studying, and traveling there. He also studied Indonesian Language & Culture in Bali for a year. He and his wife run the travel blog Grateful Gypsies, and they're currently trying the digital nomad lifestyle across Latin America.

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