30 Important English Words for When You Are at the Airport

One of the most important places to be comfortable with English vocabulary is in the airport. While in your country, the signs and announcements may be in both your mother tongue and in English, in almost all other countries you will need to rely on your English vocabulary only.

So, what are the most important words for you to understand before taking a flight? Here is a comprehensive list of the most useful airport vocabulary. Note, that you can use Linguix free grammar checker to prepare a short memo with these words to use at the airport. Also, use our AI paraphraser to make your phrases better.

1.     Airline

Definition: The company that you are travelling with. For example, British Airways, Singapore Airlines, Ryanair, United Airlines

Example sentence: ‘What airline are you flying with today?’

 ‘I’m flying with American Airlines.’

2.     Arrivals

Definition: The part of the airport where people exit from the plane

Example sentence: “Can you tell me where arrivals is, please?”

“Certainly. This is departures, so you need to go downstairs for arrivals.”

3.     Baggage reclaim

Definition: the place where you collect your suitcases after you arrive

Example sentence: “We just need to collect our bags at baggage reclaim, and then we will   leave the airport.”

4.     To board

Definition: to enter the plane

Example sentence: “We are starting to board, so we have no more time for shopping.”

5.     Boarding pass

Definition: the ticket which gives you permission to enter the plane

Example sentence: “Can you show me your boarding pass please.”

“I checked in online, so my boarding pass is on my phone.”

6.     Boarding time

Definition: the time that you enter the plane (take-off time is the time when the plane leaves)

Example sentence: “Our boarding time is at 2p.m., and take-off time is at 2.45p.m.”

7.     To book

Definition: to confirm your ticket to travel

Example sentence: “If you want to get a good price on your ticket, it is important to book many months before you travel.”

8.     Carry-on bag

Definition: a bag that you take with you on the airplane (opposite of check-in bag)

Example sentence: “I only have a carry-on bag so I don’t need to wait for a suitcase when I arrive.”

9.     To check in / check-in

Definition: to present yourself and your identification (I.D.) before you take your flight. Most people use online check-in now.

Example sentence: “You only need to check in at the airport if you are checking-in luggage. If you are only taking carry-on bags, then you can use online check-in.”

10.  Customs

Definition: the place where you show your passport after you arrive at your destination

Example sentence: “We just need to collect our bags at baggage reclaim, and then we will leave the airport.”

11.  Delayed

Definition: when the airplane will not leave at the correct time

Example sentence: “Because of the terrible weather, our flight was delayed for three hours.”

12.  Departures

Definition: the place where you get on the plane

Example sentence: “The taxi took me to arrivals instead of departures, so I was late.”

13.  Departure lounge

Definition: the final place where you wait to get on the plane, after the security check

Example sentence: “Only passengers can go into the departure lounge.”

14.  Domestic

Definition: journeys that stay inside the same country

Example sentence: “We must go to domestic departures because we are flying from New York to los Angeles. The departures here are all international.”

15.  Flight

Definition: the journey by airplane

Example sentence: “Our flight leaves at 10 a.m. and arrives at 6 p.m.”

16.  Fragile

Definition: an item that can break easily

Example sentence: “If you have any fragile items in your suitcase, write ‘fragile’ on the bag and take it to the special check-in.”

17.  Gate

Definition: the place where you get on the plane

Example sentence: “Our flight is leaving from Gate 47, so we need to walk for ten minutes to get there.”

18.  Identification / I.D.

Definition: documentation with your photograph and personal details

Example sentence: “Please can you present a valid I.D. before you are allowed to check-in.”

19.  Last call

Definition: the final opportunity to board the plane

Example sentence: “This is the last call for Ryanair Flight 123 to Barcelona. Will passengers please got to Gate 54 immediately.”

20.  Luggage

Definition: your bags (the word ‘luggage’ is uncountable, so you cannot say ‘two luggages’ – two bags is correct)

Example sentence: “We had a lot of luggage when we went to New York as we have three children and we were going for three weeks.”

21.  Long-haul flight (opposite is short-haul flight)

Definition: a journey to a place that is a long way away

Example sentence: “On long-haul flights, it is recommended to walk around the airplane regularly.”

22.  On time

Definition: the plane will depart at the correct time

Example sentence: “Even though the weather was very bad, the plane left on time.”

23.  One-way

Definition: a ticket that takes you in one direction only

Example sentence: “I have a one-way ticket because I am not coming back.”

24.  Oversized / Overweight Bag

Definition: a bag that is heavier (more kilograms) than the allowed limit

Example sentence: “If you bag is more than 25kgs you have to take it to the oversized baggage area and pay extra.”

25.  Priority boarding

Definition: to have a ticket that allows you to get on the plane first

Example sentence: “When you have small children, it’s normal to have priority boarding so you can get on the plane before everybody else.

26.  Stopover

Definition: when you stay in a place in between your flights

Example sentence: “When we flew from London to Sydney, we had a one-night stopover in Singapore.”

27.  Terminal

Definition: the airport building

Example sentence: “Most big airports have more than one terminal. London Heathrow has four terminals.”

28.  Trolley

Definition: the machine you use to transport your bags inside the airport

Example sentence: “I have three big suitcases so I needed a trolley to move them.”

29.  To upgrade

Definition: to improve the quality of your seat on the airplane

Example sentence: “When we arrived at the airport, we got a free upgrade to business class.”

30.  Visa

Definition: official permission to enter a country

Example sentence: “To enter Russia, you need a visa.”

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