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Is it necessary to learn native language of the country, where travelling?

Is it necessary to learn native language of the country, where travelling?

Sep 22nd, 2016, 04:23 AM
  #1  
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Join Date: Aug 2016
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Is it necessary to learn native language of the country, where travelling?

Hello,
I am planning a trip to Amalfi Coast, Italy. I read a blog about the problems face by a Chinese tourist and how he finally ended up in German Refugee Camp.(dammann.com.au/blog/how-a-chinese-tourist-ended-up-in-a-german-refugee-camp/)
I want to ask if anyone have face the same situation and should I learn the native language of Italy before visiting there.
VeshaliNarang is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2016, 10:01 AM
  #2  
 
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No and no.
thursdaysd is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2016, 12:57 PM
  #3  
 
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In 35 plus years of world travel I've been to every continent except Antartica and only speak English. I never had any difficulties communicating much less ended up anywhere near a refugee camp. And that includes multiple trips to Italy.

You are worrying needlessly.
RoamsAround is offline  
Sep 22nd, 2016, 02:21 PM
  #4  
 
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Learning a new language for each new trip would take time and a lot of effort. Too much for a couple of weeks vacation.

Learning a few simple words and phrases, on the other hand, is a good idea. Like "good morning" and "thank you".

I will say that there is sometimes a difference in how people get treated depending on race and gender. Not always, but I've seen it happen.

Of course, that's not always bad.

My father, a white man, complains that everyone in France refused to speak English to him. I, biologically an asian woman, had no problems at all. I got the impression that the French people I met were relieved that I spoke English.
anyegr is online now  
Sep 22nd, 2016, 08:10 PM
  #5  
kja
 
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I've never had a similar situation, and I never really learn to speak the local language -- but I ALWAYS learn at least a few pleasantries (thank you, hello, please) and maybe a few other helpful words, like where (but that only helps if you can get people to answer by pointing) and bathroom.

Enjoy!
kja is offline  
Sep 23rd, 2016, 02:20 AM
  #6  
 
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In my experience as an English speaker traveling Europe, you can get around pretty easily with English. However, it is always polite and helpful to try to learn the basic phrases of a country. Maybe try Google translate if you have a smartphone. Or, just print out a page of local phrases and bring it with you.
Travelmom83 is offline  
Sep 24th, 2016, 02:15 AM
  #7  
 
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Learning a new language for each new trip would take time and a lot of effort. Too much for a couple of weeks vacation.

Learning a few simple words and phrases, on the other hand, is a good idea. Like "good morning" and "thank you".
snehasingh9012 is offline  
Sep 24th, 2016, 02:00 PM
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Anyegr, how does your father behave ?
It is abnormal that nobody would answer him in English. However, not being French myself but being equally 'rude' when somebody comes like a ton of bricks and asks, er, sorry, demands somehting in English... I suddenly forget my English and revert to French.

Faut pas pousser quand même...
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Sep 24th, 2016, 08:58 PM
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WoinParis: good question. It was years ago, but my father is usually a nice person. A bit loud sometimes. Now he has memory problems and it's useless to try asking him.
anyegr is online now  
Sep 24th, 2016, 10:29 PM
  #10  
 
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So sorry to read that anyegr.

He may have had bad luck too ;-) As a rule French like to speak English with tourists. But indeed the magical word is 'bonjour'.

We were discussing it yesterday - we have a Scott living next door who never spoke a word of french to any of us the neighbours. Nobody will listen to him anymore...
WoinParis is offline  
Sep 25th, 2016, 01:20 AM
  #11  
 
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Is it necessary to learn a language? No, but it will improve your travelling experience immensely if you do learn a few words of the language of the country you are visiting. After all you are a guest in that country and it is good manners to make even a little effort.

Basic phrases such as good morning/night/ evening. Hello , goodbye, please thank you will show that you are making an effort. Phrases like, where are the bathrooms, can I have a couple of beers/wines etc. are essential
crellston is offline  
Sep 26th, 2016, 02:10 AM
  #12  
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Thanks Everyone for you valuable suggestions.
VeshaliNarang is offline  
Sep 26th, 2016, 02:15 AM
  #13  
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Thanks Everyone for your valuable suggestions.
VeshaliNarang is offline  
Sep 26th, 2016, 03:59 PM
  #14  
kja
 
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It turns out that if you know how to order wine or beer or coffee, and you do NOT know how to ask where the bathroom is, you might REALLY need to learn how to say "I'm sorry." Just a tip to the wise....
kja is offline  
Sep 26th, 2016, 04:16 PM
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Happily, I think I have yet to encounter a country where "toilet" was not understood. Sometimes you need to stress the second syllable rather than the first.
thursdaysd is offline  
Sep 26th, 2016, 04:53 PM
  #16  
kja
 
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@ thursdaysd: "Toilet" was not clearly understood in some of the parts of China I visited, or at least, that's the impression I had. But then, I went a bit off the path taken by most Westerners who visit that country.
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Sep 26th, 2016, 07:36 PM
  #17  
kja
 
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I should add: I suspect that there are non-verbals, including (but not limited to) facial expressions, that would -- in context -- be easily deciphered by most locals. For example, I don't think I've ever had a problem in a restaurant. As I recall, problems were more likely for me in train or bus stations.
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Sep 27th, 2016, 12:12 AM
  #18  
 
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@kja - well, I went off the beaten path in China too, but by that time I had learned the relevant Chinese characters, so maybe I wasn't asking very often. Or maybe there it was WC.
thursdaysd is offline  
Sep 27th, 2016, 03:52 AM
  #19  
 
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hi,
Going abroad for travel or work purposes? You might have asked yourself in the past whether it’s worth it to spend your time and effort learning some of the local language before setting foot there.
snehasingh9012 is offline  
Sep 27th, 2016, 07:09 AM
  #20  
 
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Well, not really but learning a language of the country you are travelling is an advantage. However, nowadays you can download an app where you can learn some basic greetings of the country you want to set foot because it is also very hard if you didn't know anything. Take for example when I went to China way back 2007, it was so hard because people doesn't know how to speak English back then, but now my friend says everyone can speak English in China.
wandererer is offline  

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