Tips to avoid language barrier while traveling

The sight of someone trying to explain themselves using gestures is not quite awesome, you probably want to visit a country whose language is not your own, here are some tips on how to avoid the struggles.

Learn a few basic words and phrases, a few basic words from the language that is mostly spoken by the locals will be an advantage to you. Words like please, thank you, where is something, asking for directions. These you can memorize or write on a piece of paper or phone notepad. This can save you a little bit of time spent explaining what you want. This is especially important when ordering food. For example, my French friend made a fool of himself when trying to order food from a Little Rock catering company for his wedding here in the States. It was awful.

Download an offline dictionary, an offline dictionary comes at hand, although it cannot perform major tasks like translating phrases. You can carry along a book with translated phrases if the area does not have network coverage or Wi-Fi.

Bring a pen and a notepad, a pen and notepad come at hand, this is because you can draw images of whatever you need, it might be of use if the locals can discern your funny drawings. 

Learn numbers, learning counting numbers is good because you will, be doing transactions, converting money, buying gifts which involve bargaining or even paying your taxi.

Do not be afraid to use gestures, try to use gestures to explain something to a local, they will most probably understand if you are not a little too dramatic. This does not mean joining a gesture class because, some signals mean the same all the places for instance; asking for the time, nodding yes or no.

Carry a business card for the hotel, this will help if you need to take a taxi back to the hotel, or when left by your friends and don know the way back, you can even call the hotel they will send someone to pick you up.  A little fun does is not that bad, get out of the hotel room and get lost, that’s how you get to know places.

Be patient and willing to pardon your request, many locals have never seen anyone from outside, approach them and kindly ask your question, making sure not to shout, it is not that they are deaf or something. Repeat what you said several times, they might finally get a hint of what you are trying to ask. Remember, you might be saying the words right, but your ascent is inaudible.

Offline map, carry along an offline map either a paper map or download one into your gadget. They can help you because you can just point on places and your taxi driver will take you there simple. That is as long as you get the latest map for the place. Google has an option for downloading a map for offline use.

I hope that you enjoy your journey around the word, and that you get to learn a few words from the people you meet along the way.

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