Let’s be real, not everyone has English as their first language yet it seems to be the universal one used among all travelers.

Unless you’re lucky enough to be rooming, volunteering, or exploring with someone who speaks your native language, most often, people will revert to type – and that’s usually English. 

Now, other people should attempt to learn your language, too. But since you need to communicate effectively and get the most from your trip, then it’s worth brushing up your English skills so that your experience of the rest of the world isn’t hindered.

Consider learning a few phrases before you go and then more will come with time.

So what’s the best way to pick it up? There are a few!


1. Watching Media

Even if you’ve religiously studied a particular language for years, it’s difficult to claim fluency until you’ve studied the nuances and colloquialisms.

For example, folks in the UK have very different lingo to those in the USA and Canada, and then there are the Australians and so on, too. It’s not just terminology; it’s the accents, too.

Watching YouTube videos, movies, or other media can help you to understand English in a way that wouldn’t be possible based solely on what you learned at school. Various types of mass media can really help you to understand the native speakers.


2. Playing Games

When you play games, you pick up on languages quickly – so it’s no wonder your teachers in school probably used word association games or even bingo to have fun with it. As an adult, games are still played but the stakes are usually a little different.

If you’re traveling, it’s likely that people are using games as icebreakers, too. Whether it’s cards, drinking games, or something else, everyone can bond together. Usually, the rules are universal.


3. Sharing A Few Drinks

When you travel, having fun is a common ground, no matter where you’re from; if you’re hanging out and socializing, you’re all in the same place.

Don’t be shy, lots of other people are likely to be in the same position as you! You might enjoy a coffee with a French girl in the morning, dinner with a Chinese guy, and then by midnight, you might be partying it up in a club with people from literally everywhere. Travel is awesome like that… it really helps you form bonds.

Making friends is the best way to put your language knowledge into practice. And, as everyone knows, practice makes perfect. No matter which method you choose, remember – you don’t learn until you try!


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