Recommend a course with basic Spanish Phrases and Audio

So my parents are going to Spain for 2 months and my mom is learning Spanish to get ready. She’s working through the official memrise course and I bought pro for her, but that is an awful lot of vocab and she’d like to learn some phrases.

This course is absolutely fantastic but it doesn’t have any audio Can someone recommend something with audio?

I know about Exito de Venta, but that is all idioms, not much use for a beginner.

Thank you!

South American Spanish is also acceptable :slight_smile:

This is a sweet little beginner course:

Try Cooljingle’s AudioProvider user script (for the web):
I tested it (shortly) on (100 days course, including native recorded MP3, also available for many languages on Memrise) for my Portuguese, where not all sentences had audio.

It polls audio from online resources if the word does not provide it by itself.

Audio-provider also works for the above phrases course.
“Previewing” the course did not work (probably because of missing levels design), but the normal learning mode worked fine for 4-5 words (and audio).

I am not going to try and talk my mom, who lives thousands of miles way, through user scripts. Thanks anyway!

I’ve signed her up for Hacking Spanish, looks good! Still, pity the phrasebook one doesn’t have audio. Thanks all!

well, how about remote desktop control software like Teamviewer where you just enter a PIN and have full desktop control yourself.
She just has to start that program once installed and hand you over the PIN on phone.

You could install the Tamperdonkey/Greasemonkey browser plugins yourself or send an email with the download link to the teamviewer install/setup exe?!

You know…installation of a user script actually is IMHO quite simple and just one e-mail away by clicking on that included raw JS direct link.
It auto installs on the browser once those plugins are activated.

I am probably not telling you any news…

if you have the feeling this is all too complicated for a pre/first setup including teamviewer or the Windows built in remote desktop (might need to be enabled too previously), well yes, then you would have to take another course/audio route of course.

Well, quite often this computer stuff drives me crazy too, especially when I am asked to do things on another computer or even have to do troubleshooting by phone :slight_smile:

A Smart TV like LG WebOS 2.0 is IMHO more difficult to control and setup than to install a browser plugin and the JS user script with a good direct link :slight_smile:

Do you know the books 200 most frequenct words, 2000 sentences on Smashwords by Neri Rook?

I stumbled across them for my Portuguese (

200 Most Frequently Used Spanish Words + 2000 Example Sentences: A Dictionary of Frequency + Phrasebook to Learn Spanish:

Looks like there was a AnkiSRS shared deck available once where you can make use of the Anki plugin “text to speech” (deck got deleted because of >250MB size limit according to a comment).

Ner’s blog:
Neri Rook on Memrise:

Neri does not seem to have created the ESP and PT Smashwords courses on Memrise, sorry :frowning:
You would probably run into the Audio-Provider user script thing again…

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“Hacking Spanish” is not Castilian Spanish, it is Mexican, so be aware of the implications. Also it’s not really an appropriate recommendation in a “Castilian Spanish” forum.

@ChrisGooden38 - I disagree. When the course was created, Memrise was not separating the Spanish courses. I’m not sure what process Memrise used when re-categorizing older courses - may have been random - but this course is fine for travel to Spain. Indeed, I believe that was its purpose, hence Level 24, “Sound like a local (in Spain)”.

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Following your link, I started the course, but I did not see it added to my profile. When I looked under “My courses” I found it listed under “Spanish (Mexican)” and separated from my other courses “Spanish (Spain)”.

As you say, it’s probably adequate for Spain. I don’t know that there is any Spanish variant that would fail to be understood when used in another locale. I lived in Andalucia for a few years and had no real problems there. Currently I live in Catalonia and have very few issues here, even though there is a campaign to stop Spanish being taught in Catalonian schools.

However it is important, for someone starting out, to be aware that local misunderstandings might arise. Same for American English vs UK English. Knowledge is preferable to ignorance. The fact that the course requires a dedicated level (level 24), to specifically address Spain, says something about the other 23.

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No, it means that all the other levels are teaching Spanish, a language that is spoken by 550,000,000 people around the world; a language that is the official language of 20 countries, and is widely spoken and understood in many other countries. Level 24 includes slangy stuff unique to one country. The other levels are not slang.

The original question at the top of this thread said “South American Spanish is also acceptable”. This makes it quite clear that the original poster understands that the language has variations. And, since Memrise does not have a separate category for South American Spanish, note that studying “South American Spanish” on Memrise would inherently require taking courses that have been given an inaccurate northern hemisphere descriptor.

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Yes, categorisation on older courses is completely 100% random. It is in no way accurate, unless the person asked for their course to be moved.

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if Olivia made the course, is definitely Mexican (One hears very clear the pronunciation, definitely not European Spanish)

Your mother can try some of the official courses, and use “ignore” to skip nonsense such as my grandparents are still going to ski or something

Most Spanish courses will work for more than one country.

I just went back and took another look at the Hacking Spanish course, and I believe that if there was a country in mind, it was Spain. “patatas bravas” “camarero” “girar” are word choices that would be understood wherever Spanish is spoken, but if someone was writing a course primarily for travel to Mexico, the course would probably say “papas picantes”, “mesero” and “doblar”.

Another clue is that when that course was written - 2012 - Memrise’s focus was really Londoners traveling to Spain.

I forgot to mention these courses, mostly “mainland” Spanish, full audio, creator active in here and friendly

(the “basic to intermediate” does have very simple sentences, the duolingo sentences 1-2 are very easy)


The official courses aren’t great. They are mostly vocabulary. It is a pity they didn’t get someone with a background in language teaching methodology to design them.

they are not great, ok, but that they are only vocabulary is simply wrong. Plenty of phrases in there…

I think Memrise did a great job with their courses, to demonstrate

  • what Memrise capable of
  • how Spanish language looks like

I just wanted to try out Memrise with a language, I picked Spanish, and I finished all official 1-7 courses even though I didn’t really want to learn Spanish, just wanted to try out Memrise. It wasn’t an advanced course in any aspect, but it was fun enough to keep me motivated. I think that’s important for a good course.

The whole 1-7 course is about 2600 items. Took me 5 months, that’s about 120 hours learning time.

Let’s say there were 3-4 examples for every important grammatical feature. Enough to recognize them, not enough to use them confidently. Official course is like a swiss knife: useful for many tasks, but if you need things done, you’ll get real tools anyway. Memrise choose not to get lost in the details, but I can find custom courses if I need to focus on something. Official course is just the gateway drug to a language :slight_smile:

In 120 hours it is not possible to get a magnitudes better result. Somewhat better with different phrases, sure, we can adjust the fine details. But learning a language properly requires much more time.

well, i find them neither very good nor very entertaining/addictive, to be honest… without users contribution they would have been also full of mistakes (they still are) However, they do contain easy phrases/sentences (some of them really stupid)

I agree, that is why I never said they were only vocabulary but rather that they were mostly vocabulary :wink: