If you are traveling to a foreign country on vacation this spring or summer, it isn’t too late to learn a few basics before you go. Though it’s true that most people in the tourism industry speak a little English, the locals you may meet will appreciate your efforts to try to speak their language! Learning a few basic words and phrases will enhance your trip and may even eliminate some frustration along the way.
The latest research shows that language-learner strategies, that is, knowing how to learn a language, are critical to success. With that in mind, here are a few helpful tips:
1. Lower the bar for success. Unlike an assignee who needs to learn the language for business and social relationships, your focus as a tourist is politeness, getting from point A to point B and at the very least, having some fun. Think of yourself as more of a language “enthusiast” or “advocate,” not a traditional language “learner”; that will take the pressure off. (more…)