dont speak ANY spanish

Old Aug 31st, 2002, 07:55 PM
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dont speak ANY spanish

im leaving soon for ecador, peru , chile and brazil and do not speak a work of spanish other than that picked up from watching speedy gonzalis cartoons. is it easy enough to get by pointing and making stupid faces, do many ppl speak english? or am i going to starve and sleep on the streets.
my travel partner speaks very poor chinese, great help....
Old Sep 1st, 2002, 05:11 AM
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If you have money you should be ok. In most of the big cities most of the hotel staff will speak some english.
Old Sep 1st, 2002, 05:34 AM
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It really depends where you go. In cities I have found many people excited to try out their English. Likewise many people at hotels and restuarants know some English. If you start to get off the beaten path it will be problematic. When you start to travel where there are indigenous populations, lots of those folks don't speak Spanish or English. Buena suerte- Good luck
Old Sep 1st, 2002, 08:33 AM
Parrot Mom
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Let's get real!!! I would highly recommend you visit a travel store immediaely and get a little translater english (credit card size) to spanish or buy a spanish book to pick up a few words You'd be amazed at how much people will appreciate your TRYING ..Just saying "Gracias" or moy dispacio (a little slower) will be much appreciated by the people you are dealing with. Your in their country which is spanish speaking and you just can't expect everybody or close to it to speak english. We Americans don't all speak another language do we!!
Old Sep 1st, 2002, 04:47 PM
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Keep in mind they don't speak Spanish in Brazil, they speak Portuguese. I haven't been to Ecuador, Peru, or Chile, but found that people who speak English in Brazil are few and far between unless you are in REALLY touristy establishments. It's not like Scandinavia or the Netherlands where everybody speaks better English than most Americans.

I would invest in Spanish and Portuguese phrase books. Most people will at least appreciate your TRYING to speak their language. You can also point to the phrase you want to say and let them read it. Keep in mind, though, that it is useless to ask "Where is a doctor's office?" in a language you don't speak because you won't understand the answer, anyway, unless you luck out and happen to be within sight of the doctor's office so they can point at it for you.

If nothing else you should learn "Please" and "Thank you" and "Do you speak English?" (or, even better, "Is there anyone here who speaks English?") in the local languages.
Old Sep 2nd, 2002, 01:37 AM
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A phrasebook would be prudent. But, Spanish and Portuguese are very simple languages and you should be able to get by using sign language and common sense for basic necessities.
Old Sep 3rd, 2002, 01:41 AM
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Why don't you just learn a few phrases? It's not too time consuming. A phrase book is a must!

Try your library they should have language tapes too.

Like all the others say, at least learn how to say Please and Thanks.
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