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Getting started with Spanish 3
Getting started with Spanish 3

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4 Speaking on the phone

Speaking on the phone in a language you are learning can be a challenging experience. Besides not being able to see the person you are talking to, you might find it difficult to understand them or even to express what you want to say. Here is some useful advice:

  • Make some notes about what you want to say, look up any key words that you will need and practise your sentences aloud first.

  • Learn common expressions such as ¿Puedo hablar con…? or ¿De parte de quién? so that you can say them confidently and understand them when others say them.

  • Be patient and polite, and ask the other person to repeat (¿Me lo puede repetir?) or to speak more slowly (¿Puede hablar más despacio?) if needed.

Here are some phrases used for situations when it is not possible to speak to someone on the phone.

No está, lo siento.   He/she is not here, I’m sorry.
Está comunicando.    He/she is engaged.
Se ha equivocado de número. You have the wrong number.
¿Quiere dejar un mensaje? Do you want to leave a message?
¿Puedo dejar un recado?   Can I leave a message?
¿Quiere llamar más tarde?   Would you like to phone later?