You are heading to a country where they speak a different language than yours. They also don’t speak English well. You only have a few weeks left before the trip and you don’t want to get lost or be ignored by people just because you don’t speak their language.
Learning a new language at this point might seem impossible. For most people, it takes months or even years before they learn the basics of a new language. The truth is that there are ways for you to easily learn the language and time is not really a big issue.
Use the right resources
There are dictionaries and books available for you to learn. Just buy whatever it is that you need and start learning on your own. It also helps if you download apps that can help you with language learning. Read reviews so you will know what resources other people have used to quickly learn a language. If you choose books, it is suggested to take the hard covers so you can easily bring them with you on your trip.
Learn the basic phrases
You are not expected to be fluent in a new language in just a few weeks. You need to spend more time practicing basic phrases that you will most likely use if you have arrived. For instance, you should include “Where is the bathroom?”, “How much is it?”, and “Where is this place?” The phrases that you will use more often should be prioritized. Don’t just learn the words, but how they are pronounced to avoid confusion.
Connect with the locals if you’ve arrived
You can prepare well for the trip and practice speaking wherever you may be. However, if you have already arrived, you have more opportunities to learn the language. Connect with the locals. Try asking them questions. Don’t worry if they laugh at you. The point is that you learn during the process. You also learn more about the cultures and traditions.
Watch movies using the said language
You can do this prior to the trip or during the actual trip. You can start by watching the films with subtitles. Eventually, you can stop using the subtitles and see if you can still understand the words. After arrival at your destination, try going to the theaters. You will start learning new words or even understand those words based on actions and context.
Be more observant
During the trip, look around you. Try reading signage and posters. It helps a lot if you can understand these words based on how they were used. If there were images accompanying the text, it would be better. In the event that you encounter the same signage or warning in the future, you already know what it means. You don’t have to ask someone else.
Learning a new language is never easy. You will surely have a hard time dealing with it. Just lower your expectations and start with the areas you are most comfortable of. You will soon realize you have already learned a lot of words.
Featured and 1st image by Scott Meltzer (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
2nd image by PanShiBo (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons