Giving street directions is really very easy when you remember to follow these points. When giving directions you are actually giving two sets of instructions. In the first set- “Go To” – you are telling the listener what street to go to or how far to go. In the second set- “Then”, you are telling the listener what to do when they get there. (turn right/left, go straight, on the left, etc.) Giving even very complicated directions is just a repetition of these two basic steps
Here is some useful vocabulary for asking directions in English.
Asking for directions
- How do you get to (the) . . . (from here)?•
- What’s the best way to …?
- How do I get to …?
- What’s the quickest way of getting to your office?
- Where are you exactly
- Can you tell me the best way of getting to your office?
- Can you tell me how to get to (the) . . . ?
- Can you give me directions to (the) . . . ?
- What’s the best way to get to (the) . . . ?
- Where is (the) . . . ? (This is also used in asking about location.)
Some Phrases to Show Direction
- Go straight on (until you come to …).
- Turn back./Go back.
- Turn left/right (into …-street).
- On your right
- On your left
- Go along ….
- Cross …
- Next to …
- at the end (of)
- on/at the corner (of)
- across from
- traffic lights
- in front of, in back of, in the middle of
- Take the first/second road on the left/right
- It’s on the left/right.. / (to) (on) the right/left of
- To be (is) located/situated
- (just) around the corner
Here are some sample phrases and expressions to use in giving directions in English.
(First,) go down this street (for ____ blocks). (Then,) turn left/right at the traffic light.(After that,) go straight on _____ Street until you get to the ______.(When you get to the _____,) turn left/right again.(Then,) stay on_______Avenue for about _______ meters.It’s on your left, next to the __________. You can’t miss it!
“Will you be coming by car or by train?”
“It’s much easier if you take the train.”
“Which hotel are you staying at?”
“We’re not far from…” or “We’re quite close to…”
“It’s about a mile / kilometre / two blocks from…”
“We’re opposite / next to / in front of / across the road from / round the corner from the supermarket.”
“Come off the motorway / highway at Junction / Exit 12.”
“It’s signposted ‘Manchester’.”
“Follow the signs to …”
“There’s a one-way system in the centre of town.”
“Take the ‘A12’ to ‘Chelmsford’.”
“Go straight on / left / right at the lights / at the roundabout /at the junction of … and …”
“Go past the supermarket.”
“You’ll come to / see …”
“It’s the first turning on the right after the bank.”
Use landmarks to help
“You’ll see a large sign / roundabout.”
“On your left you’ll see an industrial centre / a hospital / the police station.”
“Just after the level crossing / shopping centre (or mall).”
“Go past the petrol station / the garage.”
Examples Giving Direction:
How do you get to the sporting goods store?
(on foot) First, go down State Street until you get to 4th South.Then, turn left.Then, go down 4th South for three blocks.It’s on the right side of the street next to Wendy’s.(by car)Take State Street to 4th South.At 4th South, turn left.Stay on 4th South for about three blocks.The sporting goods store will be on the right, next to Wendy’s.
How do you get to (your house in) Lehi?
Take I-15 south about 20 miles. After you cross the mountain, watch for the signs to Lehi.Take the first Lehi exit.When you get off the freeway, make a right turn at the stop sign.Follow the road (15th East) for five blocks.Make a left turn on Royal Drive.Continue on Royal Drive until you see the big oak tree.My house is on the left hand side.It’s a two-story, red brick house with a large front yard.You can’t miss it!