Lost in translation – your holiday language nightmares unveiled

As the tans fade, the kids go back to school and parents return to work – most of us are left with fond memories of the summer holidays. For those people who were lucky enough to jet off to far away shores, there might also be an anecdote or two where language barriers have resulted in innocent embarrassment or an unexpected outcome.

So even if your stories are from years gone by, we want to hear about them, in 100 words or less. Entries will be judged based on cringe-worthy-ness and humour. However let’s keep the stories clean and within the legal boundaries please folks! The winner will find themselves compensated with £100 in holiday vouchers. Happy days!

All you need to do is send your entries to marketing@capita-ti.com

If you’re struggling to recall some of you holiday funnies here are some examples from our Capita TI staff for you to chuckle along to:

Emma Bertouche, Head of Digital Marketing

“We went to Mallorca when I was 15 and the hotel staff didn’t speak much English. When we arrived, my parents went to the bar to order a cup of tea. When the bar staff looked puzzled by the request, my parents started to moo and do handle gestures like milking a cow. I’d not been studying Spanish very long, but I was delighted to be able to end the embarrassment by shouting out ‘té con leche!’. I think the bar staff were as relieved as I was that it was soon over!”

 Joanne Taylor, Campaign and Events Manager

“Whilst on holiday in France I asked a waiter for a Malibu and Coke. He had no idea what I was asking for, so I just kept repeating it. Finally, he responded with ‘ahhh Malibu…I thought you were asking for a mal hibou’…which in French translates as a sick owl!”

Kristine Berry-Trow, Strategic Sales and Marketing Director

“Whilst I was living in Germany, my Mother came to visit me. After a few days she said ‘where is Einbahnstrasse? I keep seeing signs for it everywhere’, to which I replied ‘that means one-way street!’”


Terms and conditions

  1. Submission of entry is automatic agreement to our terms and conditions
  2. Employees of Capita Translation and Interpreting (Capita TI) will be allowed to submit their stories but will not be entered into the prize-draw.
  3. Competition closes at 17:00pm GMT on 31st October 2014
  4. Winner will be announced via the Capita TI website by the 15th November 2014
  5. Capita TI have the right to publish submitted entries on their website
  6. Capita TI will not accept any responsibility for lost entries
  7. You must have permission from any persons mentioned before submitting any entry
  8. Capita TI reserve the right to change the terms and conditions without prior warning and with immediate effect
  9. One entry per person
  10. Automatic, bulk or 3rd party entries will be disqualified
  11. Judges decision is final and no correspondence will be entered into
  12. Capita TI are data compliant and will not pass on details to third parties
  13. Winner will be contacted via email



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