There are many ways to enjoy travel, but one of the best is learning a language! Doing this will enable you to connect with locals and gain a greater understanding of their culture.
Spanish, French and German are three of the most useful languages to know as travelers; here are some reasons why learning these should be your focus!
1. You’ll be able to communicate with locals
At first it may seem obvious, but it’s essential to keep in mind that locals will appreciate your effort despite language barriers. Doing this will put them at ease and may result in teaching you some words they know. Language apps such as Duolingo, Babbel and Busuu can help you learn basic phrases before travelling; having these installed on your phone also serves as a convenient instant translator should you need one!
At any point in time, learning the most common international numbers will enhance your communication abilities while traveling. These numbers are universally understood and can help you order food at restaurants, get tickets to attractions or make purchases in stores. Remember also that body language can be an effective form of communication: smile often to put people at ease while standing up straight instead of slouching shows confidence and openness.
One of the worst mistakes travelers can make is acting superior because of their command of English, but you can avoid this trap by remaining open to communication and willing to make an effort. Being flexible and making connections are key components to enjoying a trip more. Saying yes to an invitation from friendly locals may open up amazing experiences – you never know where it may lead you!
2. You’ll be able to make friends
Travel can be made even more memorable through meeting interesting and unique people from all corners of the world. Becoming friends with locals who speak their native tongue will allow for much easier interactions when making connections abroad.
Not that it means learning their language fluently, but gaining some basic words and phrases will go a long way to making your trip smoother. Understanding how to ask for directions, show respect, order drinks or meals will all make the experience that much simpler.
Or you could try learning through an immersive experience like attending classes or tours led by local guides, reading books or podcasts written in your destination’s native tongue if that suits you, or turning to children’s books as they will help explain context and pronunciation of unfamiliar words.
Download apps such as Tandem to connect with native English speakers who want to practice the language together, enabling texting, voicemails and video chatting between participants. Read local newspapers or menus in order to familiarize yourself with signs and menus to enhance language acquisition more efficiently than relying on translation apps alone.
3. You’ll have a deeper understanding of the culture
Language knowledge makes understanding the culture of any place you visit easier, providing opportunities to get to know its inhabitants while making your visit even more fulfilling and pleasurable.
Learning a foreign language can also help strengthen your memory by stimulating specific parts of the brain that become more efficient with learning. Furthermore, studying another language helps your recall things more clearly which can come in handy when traveling abroad.
Respect and tolerance should be at the heart of every travel experience, which means it’s essential to travel in an open manner while learning a foreign language – for instance learning German will make understanding its culture much simpler!
Travel is one of the greatest ways to meet new people, which can open doors for friendship or even potential love connections. Speaking another language makes meeting new people much simpler and initiating meaningful discussions with them.
If you’re planning to travel in the future, learn a new language before leaving home – it will make your trip much more enjoyable while giving you greater insight into local cultures. Plus, learning a language will provide greater opportunity for interaction!
4. You’ll be able to enjoy your trip more
There are many things that make traveling enjoyable, but many travelers overlook just how much more exciting their vacation will be if they know the language of the country they’re visiting. Knowing the local dialect will allow for deeper connections with locals as well as experiencing culture unlike any tourist could do.
If you’re traveling through East Africa, learn Swahili. This language is spoken by over 140 million people worldwide and features a pleasant melodic quality which makes listening to it pleasant; furthermore, its pronunciation is straightforward with plenty of words that flow off the tongue easily.
Discovering more of a country requires learning its language; being able to read signs, ask directions and engage with locals is easier when speaking their native tongue.
Easy transportation will also be one of the biggest benefits to any budget traveler, while being able to impress locals will create even greater memories when discussing your trip back home! Sharing stories in their native tongue will make them even more relatable!