Asking and Giving Directions (Int)


Students will practice how to ask for street directions when traveling abroad.
Student Level: 
Unit Group: 
General Business - Trips

Warm Up (5 mins)

Who would you ask for help if you were lost in an unfamiliar place or city?

Can you think of any other situations where you might need to ask a stranger for help?

Listening (5 mins)

Watch the following video.

1. Does the man tell the tourists to "turn left" or "turn right" at the Joey's Pizza Shop?

2. Does he tell them to "turn left" or "turn right" at the hot dog cart?

3. Is the museum "before" or "after" the jazz club?


Reading Comprehension (10 mins)

Read the following article.

1. What are the two different ways that people can explain directions?

2. What does "drop dead point" mean?

Grammar (5 mins)

Indirect Questions from Wh-questions

When asking questions it is more polite to use the indirect form.

e.g. "Could you tell me where the bank is?" NOT "Where is the bank?"

Direct Form


Who is the leader of your team?

Could you tell me who the leader of your team is?

Would you mind telling me who the leader of your team is?

Where is the nearest post office?

Can you tell me where the nearest post office is?

Do you know where the nearest post office is?

When will the bank open?

Are you able to tell me when the bank will open?

Would it be possible to tell me when the bank will open?

where what when why how who which

Use the the words above to complete the sentences.

1) Could you let me know ___________ we get to the right bus stop?

2) Can you tell me ___________ the man standing over there is?

3) Do you think you could tell me ___________ taxi company I should call?

4) Would mind telling her __________ time I will arrive?

5) Would you be able to explain _____________ to use this machine?

6) Is it possible for you to tell me _____________ the train was delayed?

7) Could I ask you ___________ the nearest subway station is located?


What kind of questions would you ask a stranger if you were lost in an unfamiliar city?

Practice making original indirect questions of your own.

Vocabulary (5 mins)

Are these similar or opposite meanings?
go straight ahead on Park Avenue -vs- go straight along Park Avenue
make a left at the lights -vs- go left at the lights
behind the coffee shop -vs- across from the coffee shop
turn before the intersection -vs- turn after the intersection
turn up Main Street -vs- turn down Main Street
go out of the building -vs- exit the building
the post office is after the bank -vs the post office is past the bank


Use the map to complete the directions with the appropriate word from the list below.

across on your just before go past

Go straight ahead 1) __________ the bridge. Take the third left, 2) __________ the river.

Follow the road straight ahead for about 1 kilometer.

Just after you 3) ____________ a car parking lot there is a major intersection.

Our building is just across the intersection 4) ____________ right.

Role Play (15 mins)

Keiko:Excuse me. I'm sorry to bother you but I'm a little confused. Can you help me?
Stranger:Sure. No trouble at all. What's the problem.
Keiko:I wonder if you could tell me where the Marriott Hotel is? I'm a little lost.
Stranger:Oh I see. Well it's not too far away.
Keiko:Oh good.
Stranger:OK. First of all, go north, straight along this street for about 100 meters. Then you'll see a street on your right. There is a convenience store on the corner.
Keiko:Ok. Go straight ahead to the convenience store and turn right?
Stranger:Yeah that's it. Next go straight until you come to a busy pedestrian street, that's called Market Street.
Stranger:Then turn left and walk down a slight hill. The Marriott is at the bottom of the hill, across from an Italian restaurant.
Keiko:Across from the restaurant. OK. Could you tell me how long it should take to walk down Market Street?
Stranger:Probably no more than 5 minutes. If you reach the river then you've gone too far.
Keiko:Great, thank you. So it's right at the corner, then left onto Market Street. I go down the hill for about 5 minutes and the hotel is opposite an Italian restaurant.
Stranger:That's it! You got it. The hotel is on your left side.
Keiko:Wonderful. Thank you so much.
Stranger:Not at all. Have a nice day.
Keiko:You too. Bye.

Ask your instructor what kind of shops are near his/her nearest train station.
Choose a shop and then ask for directions how to get there from the station.
Repeat the instructions back to your instructor.

Try reversing the roles.

Extension Activity

Do you think some people are better at reading maps and navigating directions than others?

How has modern technology helped people find unfamiliar places?

Would you be interested in owning a pair of "Google Glass" frames that show directions in front of your eyes as you walk?


Review and Quiz (5 mins)

Do you have any questions about this lesson?

What did you learn today?

Did you learn any new vocabulary or expressions?

Ask your instructor for tips on how you can improve your English.

Finally, don't forget to take the quiz after all your lessons are finished today.

Thank you !