Holland, or The Netherlands, is a beautiful country, not as widely visited by Americans as other European countries. We're missing out on a lovely place with charming people. Did you know that Dutch is the modern European language closest to English? That means it will be easier to learn a few polite phrases to help you when you travel. Our world is becoming smaller every day. It has always been good to know another language, but Americans typically speak only English. You can carry dictionaries and phrase books when you travel, but it helps to have some phrases in your head to start with, such as the everyday polite greetings and thank-yous. The people around you will appreciate your efforts at communicating in their language and you'll make friends quickly.
- Skill level:
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Things you need
- Dutch/English dictionary or phrase book
- Friendly smile
Start with hello. Amazingly, the word is the same in Dutch and English. A friendly hello and a smile is the best first step to making friends in Holland.
Say "goedemorgen" for good morning. It sounds pretty much like it looks. If you make a mistake and you're smiling, you will probably get a smiling correction and help with whatever you need.
Say "goede middag" for "good afternoon." Smile nicely and nod your head politely.
Say "goede dag for good day, "goede avond" for good evening, and "goede nacht" for good night. "Vaarwel" is goodbye. You'll receive smiling responses for your efforts.
Say "tevreden" for please and "dank u zeer" for thank you very much. These are probably the most important things to learn in any language.
Tips and warnings
- "Meneer" is sir
- "Juffrouw" is ma'am
- "Hoe bent u" means how are you?
- "U bent welkom" is you are welcome.
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