Authored by Rodney Southern in Travel Preparation
Published on 08-03-2009
When you visit a country that speaks a foreign language, one of the things that you may think about is learning that language. Many people believe that learning a new language is only proper etiquette. Should you really learn a new language when visiting another country, however? Here are some of the things that you should be sure to take into consideration when visiting a country where a different language is spoken.
Are You Visiting a Tourist Area?
If you are planning to stay in a city that is designed to accommodate tourists, it is likely that you are not going to need to learn a new language. Most of the people who own or work at the resorts are likely to be American or will at least know how to speak English. Certain cities in other countries, such as Cancun, are designed with the tourist in mind. Learning another language is often not necessary. If you are not visiting an area that is designed for tourists, learning a new language can ensure that things will go much smoother for you. In lesser known areas, there is a good chance that most of the people do not speak English.
Why Do You Need to Learn a New Language?
If you want to just make sure that things go smoother for you, then you may want to try to learn certain phrases. Find out what the names of the traditional foods of the country are. Learn key phrases that are used to talk about the monetary system in the country that you are visiting. Also be sure to learn about the words that are used to describe the various means of transportation. All the things that you are sure to run into are worth trying to learn some basic phrases.
Is it Proper Etiquette to Learn a New Language?
Many people feel that it is proper etiquette to learn a new language when you are visiting a country that does not speak English. If you are worried mostly about etiquette, it is important to keep in mind that there are certain phrases that you should learn. Hello, goodbye, please, and thank you are just a few of the different phrases that you should learn if you want to show that you have manners when traveling to a different country. It is also important to keep in mind that there are some countries which think more highly of tourists who attempt to learn their language. Other countries may be offended if you do not speak it properly. Do a lot of research about the country and how they feel about you learning a new language.
There are some people who simply enjoy learning another language. If this is the reason that you feel that you should learn one when traveling abroad, then it is a good idea to go right ahead and do so. Unless you are visiting an area where few people will know how to speak English, things are generally designed with the English speaking tourist in mind.