Esperanto Language Blog

I need your help with Byki Deluxe for Esperanto! Posted by on Mar 16, 2011 in Uncategorized

In case you didn’t know, Transparent Language offers software to learn many languages including Esperanto. In case you haven’t seen it before, you can see our page to learn Esperanto. Anyway, we have recently decided to expand our software offerings by creating a version of Byki Deluxe for Esperanto too. I just translated a ton of useful words and phrases for it. However, I could use your help translating a few particularly challenging ones. Esperanto speakers love a language discussion, so here’s your chance!

Make a U-Turn. – renversiĝi (Thanks Julie!)

check-in time
check-out time

rare (for steak) – sanga (thanks Tom!)
medium (for steak)
– mezrostita (thanks Tom!)
well-done (for steak)
– trarostita (thanks Tom!)

conditioner (for hair) – harbalzamo (thanks Tom!)

business class – komerca klaso (thanks CJ!)
coach (as in the cheapest seating area on a plane)
round trip
– tien kaj reen
Do I have to change planes?

high-heeled shoes – ŝuoj kun altaj kalkanumoj (thanks Ian!)

these days (as in “We always speak Esperanto these days.”) – nuntempe (thanks Bart!)

I am in trouble. (as in an emergency)
I have a health problem.
– Mi havas sanproblemon. (thanks Tom!)
I can’t walk on it.
– Mi ne povas paŝi per ĝi. (thanks Tom!)

audio recorder – sonregistrilo (thanks Ian!)
pastry shop – kukbakejo (thanks Tom!)
– volejbalo (thanks Tom!)
– ŝlosebla ŝranko (thanks Tom!)
dressing room
– vestoŝanĝejo (thanks Tom!)

Where do I change trains? – Kie mi ŝanĝu trajnojn? (thanks Ian!)

to sightsee

Sometimes you can speak a foreign language for years without realizing that you don’t know translations for very basic words in your native language. In any case, any and all help you can give will be greatly appreciated!

Update: I’ll update this post with definitions as they come in. 🙂

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About the Author: Chuck Smith

I was born in the US, but Esperanto has led me all over the world. I started teaching myself Esperanto on a whim in 2001, not knowing how it would change my life. The timing couldn’t have been better; around that same time I discovered Wikipedia in it’s very early stages and launched the Esperanto version. When I decided to backpack through Europe, I found Esperanto speakers to host me. These connections led me to the Esperanto Youth Organization in Rotterdam, where I worked for a year, using Esperanto as my primary language. Though in recent years I’ve moved on to other endeavors like iOS development, I remain deeply engrained in the Esperanto community, and love keeping you informed of the latest news. The best thing that came from learning Esperanto has been the opportunity to connect with fellow speakers around the globe, so feel free to join in the conversation with a comment! I am now the founder and CTO of the social app Amikumu.


  1. HOEN Bart:

    I had trouble translating “check-in time” and “Check-out time” for a hotel into French. We decided “the rooms must be freed up at 1200” and “the rooms are available at 1400”, if that gives some help.

    “These days” is like “nowadays”. “nuntempe”

  2. CJ:

    rare (for steak) – malpli kuirata
    medium (for steak) – pli kuirata
    well-done (for steak) – plej kuirata

    That would be my best guess. I have no idea though.

    business class – komerco klaso
    coach – team-estro
    round trip – ĉirkaŭ vojaĝo
    Do I have to change planes? – Ĉu mi devas ŝanĝi aviadilon?

    these days (as in “We always speak Esperanto these days.”) – tiuj tagoj

    I have a health problem. – Mia havas sanajn problemojn.
    I can’t walk on it. – Mi ne povas marŝi sur ĝi.

    pastry shop – kukaĵa butiko
    jogging – kurado

    Where do I change trains? – Kie mi ŝanĝos tranojn?

    Those are the ones I think I know. I’m still learning myself, but those are my best guess.

  3. Chuck Smith:

    Thanks for the help so far! I’d like to get some more opinions before I put in definitive translations in the post though… also, I added the fact that coach here means the cheapest area in which to fly in a plane.

  4. Ian Carter (Jano):

    With respect, some of the above suggestions are word-for-word translations, and not idiomatic renderings. It’s an easy trap to fall into.

    Here, on the other hand, are some translations from John Wells’ new dictionary, together with some of my own suggestions (marked *):

    U-turn > plena ĝiro; drasta ŝanĝo
    check-in > registriĝi; anonci sin
    check-out > eliri; elskribiĝi

    conditioner (for hair) > moligilo; balzamo

    coach (as in the cheapest seating area on a plane) > baza klaso
    round trip > iro kaj reveno
    stopover/layover > vojaĝromp|o |i; tranoktad|o |i

    high-heeled shoes > ŝuoj kun altaj kalkanumoj*

    I am in trouble. (as in an emergency) > mi maltrankviliĝas*; mi ĝeniĝas*; mi ĉagreniĝas*
    I have a health problem. > mi havas problemon je mia sano*

    audio recorder > sonregistrilo
    pastry shop > kukaĵejo; kukaĵvendejo
    jogging > kur(et)ado; trotado
    volleyball > retpilko
    locker > (ŝlos)ŝranko
    dressing room > pretiĝĉambro*

    Where do I change trains? > Kie mi ŝanĝu trajnojn?*

    to sightsee > viziti la vidindaĵojn

    I hope these help.

  5. Joe Blum:

    Mia vochdono estas kun John Wells. Do, oni povus diri “Ne kurs-reversu!” au “Kus-reverso ne permesita.” Ankau, kial ne “Duvoje” (for roundtrip)? Kaj “Butiko de kuk-delikatoj” au “kuk-delikatejo”?

  6. Julie Spickler:

    The Wells dictionary gives “renversigxo” for “turnaround,” which could be U-turn.

  7. Peter (

    Coach is also called Economy class in the travel industry. Would something like “ekonomia klaso” work for coach?

  8. Tom S. Fox:

    “Volleyball” is “volejbalo”, “flugpilkado”, or “retpilkado” when you talk about the game and “flugpilko” or “retpilko” when you talk about the ball (though the latter to terms are also often used to refer to the game).

    “Pastry shop” is “kukbakejo.”

    “Dressing room” is “vestoŝanĝejo.”

    And by the way, “coach” in the sports sense would be “trejnisto.”

  9. Tom S. Fox:

  10. Chuck Smith:

    Hmm, I believe ekonomio in Esperanto can only mean ecomonics, so I don’t think ekonomia klaso would work here.

  11. Tom S. Fox:

    For “stopover”/“layover” I was able to find “intera surteriĝo” and “dumvoja alteriĝo.”

  12. Tom S. Fox:

    For “coach” I found “turista klaso.”

  13. Tom S. Fox:

    I found “ŝlosebla ŝranko” for “locker” here:

  14. Tom S. Fox:

    I found the meat temperatures on this website which cites the Plena Ilustrita Vortaro de Esperanto as its source:

    rare — sanga

    medium — mezrostita

    well done — trarostita

  15. Tom S. Fox:

    It also has several translations for “hair conditioner”:

  16. Tom S. Fox:

    The common term for “jogging” seems to be “sanfortiga trotado.”

  17. Ian Carter (Jano):

    “Magnetofono” means “tape recorder”, whereas “sonregistrilo” can refer to any kind of audio recorder, including software.

    “Intera surteriĝo” and “dumvoja alteriĝo” are both good, but simply refer to the plane touching down. They don’t necessarily include the idea of spending the night anywhere.

  18. Ian Carter (Jano):

    It occurs to me that a lot of people still try to translate the words rather than the ideas, which is missing the point of Esperanto’s marvellous flexibility as an agglutinative language.

    William Auld had an interesting approach, which bypassed translation as much as possible and focussed on using the built-in features of Esperanto’s affix system.

  19. William:

    Is there a translating software that translates Esperanto to English and English to Esperanto?

  20. Ian Carter (Jano):

    @William – I wouldn’t trust translation software, if I were you! I’ve used Google Translate and it’s rubbish.

    I suppose you know the story (probably apocryphal) about the translation machine, where they input the proverb “Out of sight, out of mind”, translated it into the target language, then re-translated the output back into the original language? The resulting sentence … “Invisible idiot”.

  21. Tom S. Fox:

    Can you give some context for “I can’t walk on it”?

  22. Tom S. Fox:

    Willian, try this one:

  23. Chuck Smith:

    “I can’t walk on it.” is just in a list of phrases about health. I imagine it means “I can’t walk on my foot.”

  24. Tom S. Fox:

    In that case, “Mi ne povas paŝi per ĝi.”

  25. Tom S. Fox:

    Are you making progress?

    • Chuck Smith:

      @Tom S. Fox Yes, this program is now with the content team in their queue of tasks and we’re waiting for them to get to it. I hope we can have it ready by June!

  26. Tom S. Fox:

    What did you do with the phrases that were still pending? And will we be credited or at least receive a free copy?

  27. Tom S. Fox:

    I’ve sent you a response mail but haven’t gotten an answer, yet.

    • Chuck Smith:

      @Tom S. Fox Please be patient. I have passed on your request to my editor and she should be getting back to you shortly. Considering that I’m in Germany and she’s in the USA, sometimes things get slowed down by the time zone difference.

  28. Tom S. Fox:

    Were you able to find translations for the remaining phrases?

    • Chuck Smith:

      @Tom S. Fox Yep, I just translated the rest to the best of my ability. 🙂