8 tips to defend yourself with a foreign language

When we travel to a country with a different language, we are worried that we will not know how we are going to communicate.The usual thing is to limit yourself to the vocabulary that our travel guide has and think that the best thing that can happen to us is to understand perfectly Spanish.

Defending ourselves with the language in a foreign country depends on local customs, on how careful we are and, above all, on our linguistic level. If the latter is not too high, there are tools like apps or guides can help us, the rest will depend on our common sense. Here are some tips.

1. Research some of the country's language as you go


If you chose a destination that you don't know anything about the language, the best thing you can do is research before starting your trip. First, get a pocket dictionary, It will help you a lot.

As well you can research in books, internet and YouTube videos what are the basic expressions and local vocabulary. Research the places you will visit to know how they are known in the country of destination so that there is no confusion.

2. Use the Google translator

Here your Smartphone can help you a lot. When you hear an expression you don't understandyou can quickly search the words in the Google translator, for example if you are preparing to make a reservation or order a dish. If you write down all these typical phrases before arriving, much better.

Antonio Guillem

3. Use your manners

There are countries where its inhabitants look at the education of tourists, that's why It is important that learn the expressions that allow you to ask for things with education. You can not miss the "please" or say "thank you."

Try to show you polite and attentive when you ask local people something, especially if you notice that you are in a hurry or perceive that you are not in a good mood.

4. Do not speak the language too slowly or too fast

Remember that you are speaking in another language and, if you do it too fast,maybe the locals They can't understand you. But, if you speak slowly, it will cause some disinterest on the part of the receiver and will make you feel nervous to see that you cannot communicate.

Try to speak spontaneouslyWell, some languages ​​just allow you a break to ask yourself what exactly you are trying to say.

"Learning another language is not only learning different words for the same things, it is also learning other ways of thinking about those things."

-Flora Lewis-

5. Defend yourself with gestures

If you feel that the language is very difficult for you, even with the help of portable translators, try adding gestures to the conversation without these being exaggerated.

This will help create a greater visual impact on the person you ask and it will be easier for me to understand you. Yes, Don't make gestures that make you look strident or intimidating.

6. Practice the language out loud

Say a phrase or word out loud It will make you lose your fear when you speak it abroad. Try to practice generic and useful phrases to travel, so that when you go out on the street you can express yourself correctly even without being an open book.

7. Know the customs

There are countries where you will find it very useful to have practiced some of their customs before. In the India, when addressing someone, you should bow gently with the palms of your hands together and at the chin. In Germany, for example, they don't like closeness, so they'll appreciate you keeping a certain distance when you get ready to talk to a passerby.

8. Find out about the routes

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If you do not understand the language, you must accept the fact that you will not always know what is happening. Although it may seem worrisome, there is a reason why the bus driver leaves you in the middle of the desert: it is a transfer point and another bus will arrive in a few minutes.

It is important that investigate everything about the routes you will take at your destination. This way you won't get any surprises when you have to look for the way from the airport or for your accommodation at the train or bus station.

Making yourself understood and understood what is heard in a foreign country is sometimes not easy. With these tips you will have something easier to communicate when traveling to other countries.

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