English Vocabulary: Planning a Day Out

Here are some words and phrases to talk about a day out that you plan with friends or family.


a day trip = a journey somewhere just for the day: “They’re going on a day trip to London.”

a day at the seaside = a day at the beach

a day at the races = a day when you go to see horse racing (very popular in the UK!)

a day in a theme park = a day in a place like Disneyland

a shopping trip = a day in a big city or a shopping centre

a day at the sales = when you go shopping when prices are cheap

Travelling arrangements

go by coach = go in a big, comfortable bus (a coach is for long journeys; a bus is for short journeys)

go by train / take the train

take a bus

drive = go by car

hire a minibus = pay for a small bus (for about 10 – 15 people) for the day

set off / leave at — (sharp) = the time you leave
“We are going to set off at 8am.”
sharp = punctual: “We are leaving at 7.30am sharp!”

get back at = the time you return: “We get back at 8pm.”

pick-up point = the place where you get on the coach: “There are two pick-up points. One at the Reading roundabout, and one outside the Red Lion pub.”

time for shopping / sightseeing: “We’ll have time for shopping in the afternoon.”
“We’re going sightseeing in the afternoon.”

a guided tour: “There will be a guided tour of the museum.”

a pitstop = a stop in the journey (for a toilet break): “The coach will make a pitstop at the motorway services.”

on the way = during the journey: “On the way there, we’ll stop at Stonehenge.”
“On the way back, we’ll take a detour into Oxford.”

take a detour = not go straight to your destination, but go to another place.

the scenic route = a journey with beautiful views: “We’ll take the scenic route on the way back.”


These are the things you’ll need to bring:

an umbrella = because in the UK it can rain a lot!

your camera = so you can take photos

a raincoat = to protect you from the rain

comfortable walking shoes = so you can walk a lot

a packed lunch = sandwiches, a bag of crisps, a piece of fruit etc

a bottle of water = lots of walking makes you thirsty!

a guidebook = so you can find out information about the place you are visiting

a small backpack = so you can carry everything easily

Evening activities

Here are some typical activities you plan with your friends.

a night out with friends = when you go out in the evening with your friends to a pub, club, restaurant, etc: “I’m having a night out with friends next Saturday.”

an evening at home = when you stay in: “I’d like a quiet evening at home tonight.”

come over for drinks / a barbecue / dinner = an invitation to come to your house: “Why don’t you come over for drinks on Friday evening?”

Other useful phrases

Why don’t you…? = a suggestion: “Why don’t you come over at about 8pm?”
Why don’t we …? = a suggestion for us all: “Why don’t we go on a day trip to London?”

Remember “Why don’t you / he…” etc is followed by the verb without ‘to’.

Let’s … = a suggestion: “Let’s go to London for the day!”

Remember: “Let’s…” is followed by the verb without ‘to’.

A Day Out Exercise

Choose the correct answer.

1. Lets have a day __ . I need a new coat and it will be cheaper then.
2. The children want a day __ . It's hot and they'd like to go swimming.
3. We can __ there.
4. We're __ at 7 am.
5. What time do we __ ?
6. On the way back, we'll __ .
7. You'll need a __ lunch.
8. Take a __ book.
9. Why don't we __ sightseeing?
10. Lets __ a day at the races!

Now go to the next page to get essential phrases for offering, accepting and refusing food. Plus how to use “too”, “enough” and other food-related vocabulary: English Speaking: Offering Food

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English Vocabulary: Planning a Day OutHi! I’m Clare, an English teacher and the founder of this site.

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