Write down your hotel info on a slip of paper
In places where you don't speak the language, jot down the name, address, and phone number of your hotel on several pieces of paper, along with the same information for any restaurants, attractions, or other sites you're planning to visit, and present these to cab or bus drivers as you travel.
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I always try to grab a couple business cards from my hotel for this purpose; some hotels even have little maps on the cards.
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