En el aeropuerto

En el aeropuerto

En el aeropuerto |

And finally… we take a trip to el aeropuerto (airport).

You are very likely to travel by avión (plane) either to get to Spain and start your Camino or to go back home after you have finished your pilgrimage.

So, what do you need to know about airports and air travel in Spanish? If you have been following my weekly posts, I’m sure you already know a few words, those we can also use when travelling by tren or autobús (in case you missed them, here are the links: En la estación de tren, En autobús).

In those two posts you can find words like billete -de ida, de vuelta or de ida y vuelta; asiento, pasillo and ventanilla, which are common to all three means of transport. There are some other common words, but there are also words that are specific to air travel.


En el aeropuerto

  • When you land on a Spanish aeropuerto, you will be in the llegadas (arrivals) area. You should easily find your way out. The good thing about aeropuertos is that all the signage is in English too.


  • If you are starting your journey from a Spanish aeropuerto, you should go to the salidas (departures) area first. You can find both words, salidas and llegadas, in train and bus stations also, on the screens listing all the departures and arrivals.


  • Once in the salidas area, you might need to go to the facturación (check-in) counters, but only if you have luggage to check-in or if you need a tarjeta de embarque (boarding pass).


  • You have your tarjeta de embarque and your luggage has been checked-in (or you have equipaje de mano (hand luggage) only). Then you can go through security and look for your puerta de embarque (boarding gate).


Are you ready to fly?


Today’s Spanish words

Make sure you don’t miss any posts by subscribing for free here. That way, when a new post is out, you will get it in your inbox. And you’ll get access to exclusive content too.


¡Buen Camino!

En autobús

En autobús

En el autobús |

Last week we travelled by tren. This week we’re going en autobús or bus. You can use both words: the full name is autobús, but we call it bus for short.

The good news is that a lot of the vocabulary is the same, but not all. So let’s have a look at the differences and similarities:

  • The estación de tren becomes estación de autobuses. However, buses don’t stop at estaciones only. In fact, there are no estaciones in most villages and smaller towns. In those cases, buses stop at paradas (de autobús), also known as bus stops in English.


  • You won’t need andén, vía and vagón when talking about buses. These words refer to trains specifically. If you are in a estación de autobuses and you are trying to find your bus, you need to look for the right dársena (dock).


  • If you go to an estación, you can get your billete from the taquilla, just like when we visited the estación de tren. Your billete can be de ida (one way), de vuelta (return only) or de ida y vuelta (return). Same words apply to billetes de tren, by the way.


  • If there is no estación, or the taquilla is closed, you can buy your billete directly from the conductor (false friend alert! conductor is the driver, not the English conductor).


  • If you need to check the bus or tren schedule, you will ask for the horario.


  • And once you get on the bus, the seats are also called asientos, just like the ones in trains. Asientos can be by the ventanilla (window) or the pasillo (aisle). Which one do you prefer?

Today’s Spanish words 

En la estación de tren

En la estación de tren

En la estación de tren |

You’re probably wondering… what are we doing en la estación de tren? When we think about the Camino de Santiago we think walking, maybe cycling or even horse-riding. Trains, buses and planes do not come to mind. But we will need them…


Why are we discussing transport?

  • First, you have to get in and out of Spain and that will most likely happen by plane.


  • Once you are in Spain, you need to get to your starting point, the town where you will start your pilgrimage. And you have to get out of Santiago, once your Camino is done.


  • Even after you have started your Camino, you might sometimes skip a stage or two, for a number of reasons such as time constraints or health issues.


In the latter cases, you will probably use tren (train) or bus (or the occasional taxi, which is also conveniently called taxi in Spanish!).


En la estación de tren

Some of you suggested that I should cover this topic in my mini lessons, so that is the plan for the next couple of weeks. This week we’ll navigate our way around the estación de tren (you might find it also referred to as estación de ferrocarril, but estación de tren is more common).

  • Whether you are travelling by tren, bus or plane, your ticket is called billete (by the way, we use the same word for banknotes, so you get two Spanish words for the price of one!).


  • Where do you buy your billetes de tren (train tickets)? En la taquilla (in the ticket office). Well, you can also buy them online, but if you are already at the station and you don’t have your billetes yet, then you should look for the taquilla.


  • On the information screens you will see in which vía (platform), your train can be found.


  • Vía can be translated as platform, but it literally means track. La vía is for the tren, but people stand on the andén (platform). So, let’s say that your tren is leaving from vía 3: you wait for it on the andén (waiting on the vía would be illegal, not to mention too dangerous!). Does that make sense? Please, let me know if it’s not clear enough.


  • Before you get on the tren, you need to look for some information on your billete: first of all, the number of your vagón (your billete will say coche, but we don’t call it like that when we are talking).


  • And finally, you’ve made it to your vagón. Your billete will also tell you what number your asiento (seat) is. You can now get comfortable and enjoy!


  • Oh! I almost forgot! The person who walks up and down the tren checking that we all have billetes is the revisor.

Are you over 60?

If you are travelling by train and you are over 60, you can get a Tarjeta Dorada (golden card). You can buy it (€6) at the taquilla and it will entitle you to discounts of up to 40% on the price of your billetes. You will need to show your passport in order to purchase it. Here’s the link to RENFE’s website with all the information about it (it’s in Spanish): http://www.renfe.com/viajeros/tarifas/tarjeta_dorada.html



Today’s Spanish words