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Canucking Abroad | A Guide for Canadians Living Abroad

Seeing the World hillaryraindeer

Published on October 23rd, 2012


The Benefits of Learning Languages for Travel

Traveling to different countries will mean seeing beautiful sites, experiencing new cultures and meeting a variety of different people. Unfortunately, if you don’t speak the native language, it’s going to be hard to do much of anything. There are many benefits to, say, learn English in the USA in an intensive program (editors’s note: RECOMMENDED), but for those of you who cannot wait, taking the time to learn languages before you travel is, of course, of great benefit: you can have an amazing trip unlike any you have ever taken in the past!

You will be able to do a lot more things, even if you just learn the basics. Here are some of the benefits that will make learning a new language well worth it:

The Benefits of Learning Languages for Travel - Getting Around

Once you get to your destination, how are you going to read the signs? While you could use your phone to translate for you, roaming charges are incredibly expensive. You will be able to ask the locals where are the affordable hotels, stores and restaurants around the city. It’s a lot easier to get around on buses, trains and by walking if you know what road signs say. This can even help you out when you’re using a map so you don’t get lost!

The Benefits of Learning Languages for Travel - Talking to Locals

If you’ve ever seen movies where travelers meet locals and end up having amazing experiences; it’s because they could speak to them! When you know the native language of where you are, you will be able to meet locals and talk to them comfortably. You can do everything from talk about good places to eat to ask for directions. When locals hear that you speak their language they will be able to communicate with you a lot easier than they would otherwise.
inspire language learningLearn English with Kaplan

The Benefits of Learning Languages for Travel - Shopping and Eating

Not understanding how to read or write a language means you probably won’t know what is on the menu or how much it costs. This could prove to be difficult if you have certain dietary restrictions or just want to make sure you order something you enjoy. While out shopping you will also need to know how much money you’re spending. For example, if you wanted to buy a nice scarf for $5, you might be surprised when it’s really $50. Speaking the language will also mean being able to haggle for lower prices, who doesn’t like to save money?

Most locals and shop owners will appreciate the fact that you know the language and might not even suspect you are tourists. This can result in saving money with markets that tend to mark up prices for travelers.

The Benefits of Learning Languages for Travel - Overall Experience

The overall experience you have when you’re able to speak the local language is going to be amazing! You will be able to talk to more people, find where you need to go quickly and have fun with daily activities. If you weren’t able to communicate while doing all of these things, you would have to waste a lot of time.

The Benefits of Learning Languages for Travel - Safety

Unfortunately there are a lot of people who target tourists because they don’t know where they are going, what they are saying or how to ask for help. If you look like a tourist you are likely to pay more for goods or be targeted for muggings. By knowing at least some of the language you will be able to acknowledge people, find your way easily and have a great time.

CC Hillary the Mammal

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