Chinese people are so kind and friendly, they love it when you make an effort to speak their language
Some basic ones I learnt and proven to be helpful when I was there are:
Ni hao - Means: Hello - Pronounce: Knee How
Wo shi ____ Ren - Means: I am (Canadian, American, Italian etc) - Pronounce: Wuo Xi GiaNaDa Ren (Canadian)/ Mei Guo Ren(Amercian) / Yidali Ren... <- They looooove guessing and asking where you are from, so learn your country before going ;) You simply add a "Ren" at the end of your country's name in Chinese, "Ren" means people.
Duo Shao Qian? - Means: How much? - Pronounce: Duo Xiao Chi-an <- Handy for shopping
Pian Yi Dian - Means: cheaper - Pronouce: Pian Yee Dian <- Always bargain!
Zen Me Zou? - Means: how to get there? - Pronounce: Zen ma zou <- Whip out a map so they can show you visually, you won't understand their answers lol
Xiexie - Means: thank you! - Pronounce: Shi-e Shi-e <- never forget your manners ;)