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Start speaking Chinese in minutes and grasp the language, culture and customs in just minutes more with Chinese survival phrases, a completely new way to master the basics of Chinese. To get more Chinese lessons and for free, go to chineseclass101.com and sign up for your free lifetime account. Signing up takes less than a minute and you will find more great lessons just like this one. To get more free Chinese lessons, go to chineseclass101.com
In today’s lesson, we will cover a phrase used to get you to your destination when riding a taxi. We will look at the most basic way to express this first. In Chinese, 到(dào) is a verb that means to arrive but it’s often used to mean just to. So you say 到(dào) and then where you want to go. So if I want to go to Beijing station, 北京站(Běijīng zhàn) you get in the taxi, you open the door, you sit down and you say 到北京站(Dào Běijīng zhàn.) I want to go to Beijing station or really it means just to Beijing station. Now 北京站(Běijīng zhàn) is third tone, first tone, fourth tone. So falling rising tone, flat tone and then the falling tone. 北京站(Běijīng zhàn), 到北京站(Dào Běijīng zhàn.). 北京(Běi jīng) is the capital of China, you all knew that right and 站(zhàn) is the word for station. So usually for the main station in any city, the name of the city is going to come first and then the word for station is going to come next. So like in 苏州(Sū zhōu), you would say 苏州站(Sūzhōu zhàn) or in 西安站(Xī'ān zhàn), 上海站(Shànghǎi zhàn). Basically any city is going to have one main train station because the railways are the main form of transportation in China. Now if you want to get a little more complicated, a little more fancy, you can say 我想去(Wǒ xiǎng qù), it means I want to go to, 我想去(Wǒ xiǎng qù), I want to go to. All right the tones are third tone, third tone, and then fourth tone. So that’s falling, rising tone, falling, rising tone and then the falling tone. Remember when we have two third tones in a row, the first one becomes a rising tone, a second tone. So 我想去(Wó xiǎng qù) and then your destination. All right, one more time, 我想去(Wó xiǎng qù) and guys, pay attention to the 去(qù), it’s different than 出(chū). Remember we have two sounds in Chinese, 出(chū) and 去(qù). You can make your 去(qù) more clear if you pucker up your lips like you are going to kiss somebody. I have had a Chinese teacher once say to me when I was saying 去(qù) wrong. She said, how are you going to kiss somebody with those lips. That’s what you got to do. Just push your lips out and go 去(qù). All right, let’s get outside the textbook for a second and let you in on some things you need to know. I don’t want to scare you or anything but when you are in China, Beijing, any other big city, any small city for that matter, you got to be careful in Taxis. China is a really safe place. You will never get beat up, mugged anything like that but you do have to watch your money. Whenever you take a taxi, make sure they turn on the meter. Never talk about negotiating a price beforehand or get into a taxi where they don’t have a meter. Taxis without a meter will not necessarily take advantage of you but they are unregistered, they don’t have insurance and they are probably going to try and take advantage of you and if they try to take advantage of you, there is really nothing you can do. When you get into a cab, make sure they turn on the meter. Never, ever negotiate a price beforehand. Another scam people try to pull involves the word 15 and 50. 15 in Chinese is 十五(shí wǔ) and 50 is 五十(wǔ shí). Taxi drivers will say yeah wherever you want to go 15 kuai or 15 Yuan. Kuai is the informal word for the Chinese Yuan which is the Chinese monetary unit. Kuai is used when talking with your friends in informal situations. You probably use Yuan when talking to customers or you always use Yuan when you are writing. I’ve never actually really seen anybody write Kuai. A lot of cab drivers will say, yeah 15 kuais, 15 kuais, wherever you want to go but when you get out of the cab, they go yeah, we said 50, 五十(wǔ shí). Don’t ever, ever, ever fall for that.
All right, to close our today’s lesson, we’d like you to practice what we have just learned. I will provide you with the English equivalent of a phrase and you are responsible for shouting it out loud. You will have a few seconds before I give you the answer. So 加油(Jiā yóu!) Okay, here we go. The simplest way to say to Beijing station, 到北京站(Dào Běijīng zhàn.) I want to go to Beijing station, 我想去北京站(Wó xiǎng qù Běijīng zhàn.)
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