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Best Way to learn Italian, Rozeta Stone?

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Hello, the wife and I got back from Italy a month from today and loved every second of it. She had been there several times before visiting her family and this is the first time that I was able to come. We had an awesome experience mainly because we stayed with her grandparents and aunt and uncles houses in a small mountain town outside of Cassino.

The only issue we had was that farther away we got from Rome the more people didn't understand English. Even in Napoli not as many people spoke English. Everyone was very nice and mostly found it amusing that I was American and butchered everything that I tried to say. When we were at her cousin's wedding I really wish I was able to at minimum be able to pick up more of what people said instead of having to rely on her father and grandparents to translate everything.

We are looking more for conversational Italian then just practical vocabulary. I've been told Rozeta Stone is amazing but I've been reading some reviews that have put me on the fence. If you have purchased Rozeta stone do you recommend spending the money right up front and buying all 5 phases (nearly $500 investment). We are hoping to go back in a year or two and would really like to be able to communicate better. I only wish her dad would have taught my wife to speak his native language. Any thoughts on the topic would be helpful.

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