Traveling is one of the most rewarding experiences for us, human beings. Being able to travel to different countries, continents, getting to know people with different cultural backgrounds, speaking foreign languages with the natives are some of the best feelings ever. You grow as an individual in this big world. A lot of people are sometimes afraid to travel abroad, fearing the language barrier. Considering the fact, that out of 7 billion people in the world English is spoken by around 1.5 billion people (which is a rough estimate based on different research), that leaves a lot of people not speaking the language. So, many travelers are sometimes scared they will not be understood and vice versa. But, truth be told, that is one of the reasons that should bother you least of all. You know why? Because there are many tips to help you get over the fear of language issues while traveling. Read on to find out more about them.
Have a dictionary on-the-go
When you’re traveling abroad where people speak a language you do not speak fluently, make sure to always have a mini-dictionary with you. It can be an application or an actual mini-book with some of the most widely-used expressions in that language. Simply having something to refer to for a little help is good enough. Sometimes you will only need a single word to let the person you’re communicating with know what you mean. In such cases, having a dictionary is a great solution to your problem. Plus, it can never hurt to learn a few phrases and words while you’re on the road, right?
Use body language like a pro
I’m honestly not sure if there is such a thing as someone who is a pro in body language, but anyways. The point is to use your body language, gestures and mimics to try and explain a certain situation to the locals. Honestly, you can explain so much with your body and mimics, you just need to give in to your imagination and things will work out. The cool part about such moments is the presence of humor in almost all situations. I mean, it’s pretty funny when someone tries to make another one understand that he wants to find the monkeys in a zoo. Just make sure to read about etiquette rules around the world not to insult the locals by accident.
Try to do your research and find people who do speak that language beforehand
The Internet is awesome. No big news here. But there’s definitely more to that than just Google and Facebook. Those said Google and Facebook can actually help you find people who would be willing to accompany you while traveling in their country. See, you find a travel buddy and a personal interpreter in a matter of minutes. There are tons of forums that can help you find a local travel buddy.
Have all your documents translated upfront… just in case
A language barrier is not only when you struggle for words in your travel destination. Said language barrier can actually start right from the airport where you might not have a certain piece of paper translated into that language. That is why it’s a good idea to take care of it ahead of time and have professionals do the job. Luckily, there a lot of great online translating services that can help you avoid inconvenient situations on a more formal level.
Traveling is fun, rewarding and full of new experiences. You don’t have to speak the language of the country you are visiting. All you need to do is simply be quick-witted and never panic, I’m sure someone will appreciate your acting talents.