Here are some examples

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When you

When you’re in a country you don’t know, you can easily get lost at some point during the trip, even if you have a map. So it’s really useful to know how to ask for and understand directions in English so you can reach your destination. It’s also great to be able to give directions yourself to tourists or foreign colleagues.So what words and phrases can help you give and ask for directions? Read on to find out!
First of all, you need to know some basic vocabulary. The most important words and phrases are: It’s also helpful to know some common places people visit in a city, such as the following:
Here are some examples:
Go along the street until you reach the traffic lights.
You’ll see a bank on the left.
It’s about two blocks from here.
I prefer going to the airport on the highway because it’s faster.
Some prepositions and adverbs can also help when you’re giving directions:
For example,
My office building is in front of the mall.
Go straight on for about one kilometre.
The cinema is next to the bank.
Asking for directions
When you ask for directions, remember above all to be polite. So start by saying one of the following phrases:
Hello. Can you help me, please?
Good morning. May I ask for some help?
Excuse me, could you help?
Once you have someone’s attention, you can ask for help to reach your destination. You can do that by using one of these phrases:
Could you tell me how to get to the bank?
Do you know where the museum is?
We can’t find the subway station. Is it near here?
Where can we find a park near here?
If you’re not sure you’re going in the right direction, you can make sure by asking:
Are we on the right road to the city center?
Is this the right way to the mall?
What’s the best way to get to the airport?
Giving directions
In the same way that you need to ask directions when you travel abroad, foreigners visiting your city might ask you directions, and what better way to practice English than to help them? 🙂
Here are some common phrases you can use:
Go past the cinema. (Pass the cinema.)
Go along this road.
Go straight on/ahead. (Stay on this road – don’t turn.)
Go through the tunnel.
At the roundabout, take the first exit.
Turn left at the crossroads.
Take the second right.
It’s on your left.
You’ll see it in front of you.
It’s on the other side of the road.
You’re going the wrong way.
If you travel abroad for work or pleasure, knowing how to ask and understand directions is really important.
The best way to learn directions is to do a proper English course that gives you the chance to practice in a controlled environment with guidance and feedback. At Wall Street English you can learn how to give and understand directions through fun interactive activities and by practicing in small classes led by native teachers.
Do this short quiz to find out what level you are and start learning now!

You know how to ASK for directions, but what happens when an English speaker asks YOU for directions. This is not a time for small talk. Give only basic directions with short phrases. Do the best you can.

Questions you may hear
How do I get to Main Street?
Where is the closest gas station?
Can you tell me where the community centre is?
I’m looking for Jane Street.
Are you from around here?

If you know the way…

Use basic English to offer directions. Short phrases are best. Speak slowly and use very careful pronunciation. Spell out a word if necessary.

The easiest way is to…

The quickest way is to…
The best way is to…

go + direction (right, left, down, up, through)

take + road name
turn + right/left
stay on + road name for + distance or time


The easiest way is to go right on Commercial Avenue.
The quickest way is to take Road Number 1.
The best way is to turn right on Main Street.
Stay on Route 1 for about ten minutes.

Use transitions

Separate each leg of the route with a transition.

after that then next when you get to…go… finally

Offer “Ballpark Figures” (rough estimates of time or length of travel)

Some people feel better knowing how long it will take to get from A to B.

It’s just around the corner (not far).

It’s not far.
It’s a bit of a way. (it takes a while)
It’s about a five minute walk.
It’s about a twenty minute bus ride.

Use landmarks

Tell the person what to watch for.

You will see a large clock on the right.

You will pass a gas station.
It’s across from the blue church.

More useful language

It’s on + street name
It’s across from
It’s opposite
It’s near
It’s around the corner from

Offer warnings

Stay in the right lane.
It’s a very busy road.
It’s a big hill. (if they are walking or on a bike)
There might be construction.
If you pass the … you went too far.
There’s no parking.

Repeat yourself

If YOU repeat the directions again, the other person will feel more confident. Repeat important details including street names and turns. You can also ask the other person to repeat the directions back to you.

If you are in the car with the driver…

Give a lot of warning.

Turn right at the next street

Get in the left lane.
Go one more block. Then turn right.
At the next traffic lights turn…
It’s going to be on your right.

Make sure that the other person understood your directions. Say: “Did you get all that?”

If you don’t know the way…

Don’t guess! Don’t just shake your head and walk away. Use one of these phrases:

I’m sorry, I’m not from here.

I’m afraid I can’t help you.
Sorry I don’t know my way around here.

Offer another solution

You could ask the bus driver.
Ask the front desk clerk.
Follow me. I’ll show you the way.
Do you want me to draw you a map?

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