When everyone like the blog about phrases for people traveling in Korea, I decided I needed to give you a list of phrases like that for each language that I can speak. I realize everyone has interests in different parts of the world. Many people, even now, go to Romania as short term missionaries and it is becoming a popular destination for tourists. I understand that there is a need for information on the Romanian language. When I went there, there wasn’t even one book or language course anywhere on Romanian because they were just coming out of Communism, and people didn’t even know they existed. Everything I learned in Romanian was learned without the aid of the normal classes and books that people use. Nowadays, there are online Romanian dictionaries and probably some language courses put out be the Romanians because Romanians are language people. Everyone in Romania seems to study some foreign language. Here are the helpful phrases:
Bună Ziuă = Hello, Good Day (“Ziuă” is pronounced “zee-wuh.”)
Bună Dimineață = Good Morning (Remember the “ț” is a “ts” sound.)
Bună Seară = Good Evening (Seară is pronounced “see-ahruh.”)
Ce faci? = How are you? or What are you doing? (pronunciation: chay fach)
Sunt bine, și tu? = I am fine, and you? (pronunciation of și is “she.”)
Servos = Hello or Hi
Bună = Hello, hi, or good
Ce mai faci? = How have you been doing lately? or What have you been doing lately?
Cum te cheamă? = What is your name? or literally, How do you call yourself? Yes, they use “how” instead of “what” here.
Mi e foame. = I am hungry. (Pronunciation: Me eh foh-ahmeh.)
Mi e sete. = I am thirsty. (“sete” is pronounced “sehtay.”)
Unde este baie? = Where is the bathroom. (Pronunciation: unday yestay buy-eh?)
Vreo sa folosesc un toilet. = I want to use the toilet.
Mergi drept înainte. = Go straight. (Pronunciation: merj drept unah-eentay)
Mergi dreaptă = Go right
Mergi stângă = Go left
Unde este hotelul? = Where is the hotel?
Unde este camera mea? = Where is my room?
Această este bagajele mele. = This is my luggage.
Mulțumesc = thank you
E bine = It is fine or you are welcome
Scuzați mă = Excuse me
Scuzi mi = Excuse me
Unde pot sa cumpără un billet? = Where can I buy a ticket?
Unde este trenul meu? = Where is my train?
Unde este gara? = Where is the train station?
Unde este un restaurante bună? = Where is a good restaurant?
Unde e magazinul? = Where is the store?
Ași vreau sa găsesc un pic de mâncarea. = I would like to find a little food.
Ajută mă. = Help me.
Sunt de America. = I am from America.
Sunt de Coreea de Sud. = I am from South Korea.
Sunt de Japonia. = I am from Japan.
De unde ești? = Where are you from?
Poți sa vorbiți limbă engleză? = Can you speak English?
Da, pot sa vorbesc limbă engleză. = Yes, I can speak English.
Nu, nu pot sa vorbesc limbă engleză. = No, I can’t speak English.
Nu pot sa vorbesc limbă romană. = I can’t speak Romanian.
Unde pot sa găsesc un taxi? = Where can I find a taxi?
Unde este metrou? = Where is the subway?
Cât costă? = How much does it cost?
E prea scump. = It is too expensive.
Vreau ceva mai ieftin. = I want something cheaper.
Nu am bani. = I don’t have money.
Îmi pare rau = I am sorry.
Lasă mă în pace. = Leave me alone.
Unde pot sa schimb bani? = Where can I change money?
Ași vreau sa merg la cofetăria. = I would like to go to a coffee shop (or cafe).
Sunt obosit/Sunt obosita. = I am tired. (If you are a man or boy, say it without the “a” at the end. If you are a woman or a girl, use the “a.”)
Vreau sa dorm. = I want to sleep.
Vreau sa merg. = I want to go.
Vreau sa stau jos. = I want to sit down.
te rog= please
poftiți = Please do it
Pofta Buna = Enjoy your food, or some English speakers say it in French, “Bon apetit.”
If you want to travel in Romania, in some ways, you are in luck because Romanians are a language people. Even the people they call “peasants” who live in the village may be trying to learn to speak a foreign language. There are not just native Romanian speakers in Romania. There are also native German and Hungarian speakers who also speak Romanian. For many years, the most popular foreign language in Romania was French. However, English as become increasingly popular since the Romanian revolution. Lots of them speak English. They find English easy. However, speaking Romanian helps you in several ways. First, I have noticed that sometimes Romanian translators put their own spin on the message or really don’t understand as well as they think they do, and your message may not really be getting through. Romanians are proud people, and if they make a mistake, they will never admit it. They are proud of their language abilities, and they should be. However, they can’t take any criticism of their language abilities.
There are some wonderful people in Romania, but there are little traps here and there where people may try to cheat you. Some of them think foreigners are rich, and would like to get some of their money. They will charge one price for a Romanian and another higher price for a foreigner. I have seen official people at the border trying to get bribes out of the travelers. Luckily for me, they didn’t do it to me, but they do it to foreigners. I have seen them. I look like a Romanian, speak like a Romanian, and when I was there, I carried a Romanian work card, so many didn’t realize I was a foreigner and gave me the Romanian price. I went to a retreat at Poiana Brasov where there were lots of foreigners. I was the only one in the group that was charged the Romanian price. Everyone else was overcharged. They will not budge. They think what they are doing is only fair. I was on a train and heard a conversation between the porters at the border. They were speaking in Romanian. They were planning on getting bribes from all the foreigners. One of them had already talked to me and learned that I was a professor at one of their universities and had a newborn baby. He knew I was a foreigner, but he asked the other one not to try to get a bribe out of me, so they left me alone, but were forcing bribes out of other foreigners. Be careful in Romania. They will take as much as they can from you. If you are forewarned and speak Romanian, you are in a better position not to get cheated.
This might make some Romanians mad that I gave you this hint, and I am sorry, but I don’t want to lead anyone into a trap. Romania is a wonderful, beautiful, friendly country. However, there are those who try to cheat, and foreigners need to be warned. They even try to cheat one another if they think they other has money. I had a Romanian friend who went on a cruise ship and made a good salary. When he got back to Romania, everyone was trying to get his money. He wanted to run away from Romania, so the next time he went on a cruise ship, he didn’t go back to Romania even though he loved it. Some of the will try to cheat even their own people. I love Romania too. I just don’t want people getting in trouble there. I want them to have a good experience.