HALF-BOARD: N, when you have breakfast and another meal – usually dinner – at the hotel
The price includes half-board and all the extra programs.
FULL-BOARD: N, when all the three meals are included in the price
We had full-board on our holiday so we didn’t have to cook at all.
DEPOSIT: N, the amount of money you pay before you occupy your room so that nobody else can have that opportunity
We had to pay a deposit of 200 euros before we arrived at the hotel in Bulgaria.
FACILITIES/AMENITIES: N, all the services and possibilities that you can use at a hotel eg.: hairdresser, a large conference room, a swimming-pool, a bar, cable TV, etc.
You need to pay extra for any facility you wish to use.
ADJOINING: ADJ, neighboring (room)
In the adjoining room there is a family of 5 with two very small children who always cry.
DOUBLE BED: N, a bed that is suitable for two people
We had a huge double bed in our room.
DAMAGE CHARGE: N, the money that you have to pay in case you ruin something in the hotel
We added a damage charge to the bill as you lost the remote control for the Tv in your room.
BELLBOY: N, a person who works at the hotel and helps guests with their luggage
The bellboy quickly ran to the door and collected our luggage in no time.
LOBBY: N, a large area in the hotel where guests arrive after entering the hotel
We were picked up by the tour guide in the morning.
EN SUITE: adv, a bedroom that is connected to a bathroom and vice versa
The room was not en suite so there was a common bathroom at the end of the corridor.
LINEN: N, pillowcases, blankets, sheets, and tablecloths
Somehow there was not enough linen in the room so we had to ask for more.
SUITE: N, a type of accommodation that involves a number of rooms and usually a kitchen or a kitchenette
The suite that we reserved had a huge living-room combined with a dining-room.
COMPLIMENTARY: ADJ, free of charge like complimentary breakfast, complimentary wifi
In the brochure the hotel claimed that they would be offering guests complimentary breakfast in case guests reserved a room before the 15th of April.
VALET PARKING: N, when a member of staff parks guests’ cars for them at a restaurant or hotel.
The hotel we went to was very posh and used valet parking.
ROOM SERVICE: N, a service from which guests can order food to be delivered to their rooms.
I ordered some fruit and white wine for our room from the room service.
RECEPTIONIST: N, a person at reception who helps you check-in and check-out and also provides guests with their keys
The receptionist was kind enough to call a taxi for us.
LATE CHECK-OUT FEE: N, this is the amount of money you have to pay if you can’t check out of the room by the time the hotel originally asked you to
We had to pay a late check-out fee since we overslept as a result of the party the night before.
DO NOT DISTURB SIGN: N, a sign that you can put outside your door if you don’t want to be disturbed.
The housekeeper didn’t dare come into our room as we put out the do not disturb sign.
REGISTRATION FORM: N, a form guests are requested to fill in with their data before they can occupy their room in the hotel
Can I ask you to fill in the registration form, Sir?
Now check your knowledge.
Direct questions are the questions that we usually ask:
Where are you from?
What did he say?
Is the store open?
Did you like the movie?
However, sometimes we introduce these questions with a comment, something like:
I’d like to know…
I’m curious about…
I don’t understand…
Or you can introduce questions with questions, for example:
Can you tell me… ?
Do you want to know…?
When you insert any of these before your real question, your real question will have a NON-QUESTION form, in other words, it will have a statement word order. Look:
I’d like to know where you are from. (not: I’d like to know
where are you from.)
I’m curious about what he said. (not: I’m curious about
what did he say.)
This is the only thing that you must pay attention to when your real question is a WH-question (=question with a question word, like when/why/who…).
However, when your real question is a yes-no question (=where the answer can be a ‘yes’ or a ‘no’), you must
1 – pay attention to the word order
2 – insert IF between the two sentences
I wonder if you liked the movie.
Can you tell me if the store is open?
However, if the introductory phrase is a question that ends with „that”, we don’t need IF. But we still use a statement word order!
Is it true that you liked the movie?
Are you sure that the store is open?
The punctuation at the end of the sentence depends on the introductory phrase. If it’s a question (Can you tell me…?) then you put a question mark at the end of the sentence. If it’s a statement (I wonder…) you put a period at the end of the sentence.
Now check your knowledge.
Vacation in Skiathos
This is how you should do this task:
1. Listen to the recording to get an idea of what it is all about.
2. Read the questions about the text.
3. Listen to the text and answer the questions. Listen as many times as you need but not more than 5 times.
4. If you can’t answer all the questions, look at the script and listen to the text at the same time. Check which part you didn’t understand and answer these questions:
- Do I understand all the words?
- Do I understand the grammar?
- If I know the words and the grammar, too, what’s „strange” about pronunciation? What would I say differently?
5. Check your answers.
6. Now you can check out the ‘vocabulary to learn’ section.
Answer the questions
Now check your knowledge.
Vocabulary to learn
These are the words and phrases from the text. I explain them here but learn them from the text where you can see them in context and in combination with other words. Learn the combinations if possible.
tiny – very small
from the very beginning – starting with the first moment
forget about the heat – forget that it is hot
catch sight of – turn your eyes toward something and suddenly realize it is there
the breathtaking view of – the view is what you see, and if it is breathtaking, it is so beautiful that you almost forget to breathe
Interestingly enough – it’s a spoken phrase, we say it when we want to express that something is a little surprising
take place – happen
explore – visit an area, usually when it is new for you, and try to learn everything about it
winding – not straight
cobblestone – earlier the roads were covered with cobblestone and not asphalt
a whole lot of – many, maybe too many
enjoy the atmosphere of – feel good because of the place/people around
something other than X – not X, something else
found this a little tiring – believe/feel that something is tiring
complain – say that you have a problem
spent time doing sth – do a certain activity for some time
lie in the sun – sunbathe
snorkeling – use a pipe and goggles to go underwater and watch the fish and the plants
turn out fine – has a good ending finally
all in all – everything altogether
have a wonderful time – feel really good, enjoy something
return in a couple of years – go/come back some years later
Last year I spent a week on a tiny Greek island called Skiathos with my husband and two children. The flight there didn’t take long, and the air attendants were extremely nice, so the vacation was great from the very beginning.
When we arrived, it was hot but we didn’t mind. We even forgot about the heat when we caught sight of the breathtaking view of the deep blue sea.
Interestingly enough, there is only one town on the island, so most activities take place there. The first evening we had dinner in a lovely, romantic restaurant close to our hotel. After dinner, we explored the winding cobblestone streets of the island. They were so pretty that we took a whole lot of pictures. Probably more than necessary.
On the second day, we visited the historic churches and enjoyed the atmosphere of the typical white Greek houses.
If you want something other than a town experience, you can visit the forests, hills and valleys with olive and walnut trees. This is what we did the following day. Our children found this a little tiring but luckily, they didn’t complain.
We spent the rest of our vacation time on the beach, lying in the sun. The children also tried snorkeling, and, once the whole family went to ride a banana together. For me, it was scary at first but everything turned out fine and it was fun.
All in all, we had a wonderful time and we want to return in a couple of years.