This is my ultimate childhood dream: “I want to travel and see the world”. Nothing really beats packing your bags, bringing a map, and hitting the road to an unfamiliar destination that’s so far away from home. I’m sure that most of you want the same thing, too. I can’t really describe myself as a traveler or a backpacker, but I really want to become one if given the chance. I don’t have the luxury these days to travel as much as I want to. I have my own business, which means that I have more responsibilities now than before. But sometimes, when I have the chance (And not to mention, time and money), I still find a way to travel. Last November, I visited Boracay. It’s a small island located here in the Philippines. It’s famous for its powdery-white sands, azure seas, and warm weather. It’s like paradise here on earth!
I was there for three, beautiful days. I could say that my Boracay experience was a memorable one, not only because of its breathtaking scenery, but also because I met a lot of ESL students there! During that nice and friendly conversation with some Russian girls, they asked me on how they can improve their English speaking skills. They didn’t know that I’m an ESL teacher yet, but I still gave them some useful tips that they might need. But this is the most interesting question that I’ve encountered that day:
“Can you give me a list of idiomatic expressions with meanings and examples? I have an American boyfriend, and he uses a lot of idioms that sometimes, it’s really hard to keep up with him. Plus, I want to speak English more fluently and confidently. Can you help me?”
I replied: “Sure, should I start by giving you a list of English idioms and phrases related to traveling?”
“That would be lovely!” She said with such excitement.
It was such a fun and interesting night over sodas and French fries. Our conversation lasted for an hour, but I didn’t notice the time. In the end, I came up with the Top 8 lists of English idioms and phrases related to traveling. And this, my dear ESL students, is what I want to share to all of you. You could also add these idioms in your vocabulary bank if you want to speak English more fluently and confidently!
- Hit the road
When you say ‘hit the road’, it means that you’re going to begin a journey / tour.
Example Sentence: You better sleep early tonight. We’re going to hit the road at 5 in the morning.
- Travel light
Ah, yes! This one is my favorite idiom. I often say ‘travel light’ to my travel buddy if I don’t want him / her to bring a lot of items. I mean, seriously, we don’t want to be bothered with so much stuff that we don’t need, right?
Example Sentence: Marie brought a lot of clothes with her on her trip. She didn’t travel light.
3. Watch your back
If you want to have a hassle-free travel, you always have to ‘watch your back’. When I tell you to watch your back, I want to remind you to be careful of and to pay attention to the people around you.
Example Sentence: When you travel alone, you have to watch your back if you don’t want to be in danger.
- Call it a day
You say ‘call it a day’ if you have already finished your activity for the day and you want to go back to your hotel and get some rest.
Example Sentence: After the tour, Daniel decided to call it a day and get some rest.
- One for the road
Before I begin with the explanation, let me tell you that this idiom is not suitable for minors! Because if I say ‘one for the road’, it means that I will drink an alcoholic beverage before going out. I rarely use this idiom because I don’t drink. Plus, I don’t want to be dizzy during the tour!
Example Sentence: Let’s have one for the road before we go out!
- Drive someone up the wall
When someone is ‘driving you up the wall’, it means that someone is making you really, really angry. Who wants to be angry during a trip, right? But unfortunately, we can’t avoid it! There are times when your flight is late or the hotel failed to reserve a room for you. Oh well, these things can really drive you up the wall.
Example Sentence: My delayed flight is driving me up the wall. I can’t afford more delays because I have an upcoming business trip tomorrow!
- Off track / Off the beaten path
This idiom means that a place is either the wrong way or far away from the main road / route. And I have to remind you that you should never, ever go off track because you’ll never know what you’ll encounter!
Example Sentence: We ate dinner at 10 P.M because the restaurant was off track. It was so difficult to find!
So there you go, my dear ESL students – The top 8 lists of English idioms and phrases related to traveling. Now, you can add these new idioms in your vocabulary bank to help you speak English more confidently and fluently.
May I confess something? I have to admit that while writing this post, I can feel another urge to go somewhere. It doesn’t matter if that place is off the beaten path, as long as the place looks exciting and inviting, then I’m definitely going to hit the road.
What about you? Do you like traveling? Where would you like to go in the future? Hit me in the comments below and let’s talk all about it!
- Backpacker (n.) – When you’re a backpacker, you like to travel light and you tend to travel for a longer than time than most typical tourists. You like to stay in cheap accommodations such as inns and hostels. And yes, backpackers really do bring their backpacks!
- Powdery-white (adj.) – When you describe something as powdery-white, it means that something is so fine and white that it looks like powder.
- Azure (adj. / n.) – Something that’s bright blue in color. If you want to see something that’s azure, I suggest you look up the sky when it’s cloudless.
- Breathtaking scenery (adj.) – When you say that something is so breathtaking, it means that the scenery is so beautiful that you couldn’t explain its beauty with words.
- Keep up (phrasal verb) – When you want to keep up with something, it means that you want to progress in the same level as someone else. Or, it could be something else.
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