It is always good to learn some basic phrases like hello, thank you, etc. in the local language.

In Cuba, Spanish is spoken throughout the country.

Some basic phrases that will come handy:

  • Hello - Hola
  • Goodbye - Adiós
  • Yes - Si
  • No - No
  • Excuse me - Perdon
  • Sorry - Discúlpame
  • Do you speak English? - Hablas inglés?
  • I don't speak Spanish - No hablo español
  • please  - por favor
  • allergy - una alergia
  • bleeding - sangrante
  • visit a doctor - ir a una consulta
  • Queuing (waiting in line) is endemic in Cuba. When you join what you believe is the end of the queue it is good form to ask 'ultimo?' to confirm that you are in fact joining the end.

    Sometimes the "cola" (Line) won't be apparent but it's there just the same. You may see people sitting on benches looking like they are relaxing but they are actually waiting for an office or business to open. They're actually in line and have been waiting, sometimes for hours, or have paid someone to hold their place.  So ask as above, "el ultimo?"

    If someone is pestering you on the street for money you can say, "No me moleste, por favor!" (Please don't bother me!)