How to survive a destination where no-one speaks your language

The thought of having to navigate a country or city where no-one understands might be scary but the first tip is to not panic.

How to survive a destination where no-one speaks your language

Lost and in a country where most people don't understand you? Well, try any of these tips.

1. Translator applications

Since this is the 21st century, travel apps should be the first option on your list. Everything can now be solved by just the tap of a button. You could type out what you want to say on Google Translate, for example, and it says it for you. It also works when you need to translate what someone else says. You could also get dictionary apps for simple words.

2. Use hand gestures

Perchance your phone battery is flat and you are stranded, you might want to try gesturing. Hand gestures may come off as rude or silly, but it could come a long way in breaking the language barrier. Body languages and gestures are universally understood.

3. Make sure you have a notepad and pen

A notepad and a pen can come in very handy in situations where you have to describe what you need. It can also come in handy when you need directions to an address which you could just easily write down on your pad.

4. Hire a translator or guide

Using a human translator as a tour guide, saves you all the stress of panicking. Get a trusted translator that won't sell you off while you're not looking.

5. Know the basics

Do not assume everyone speaks English. Some staff at strategic places might, such as your hotel and the airport, but a vast majority might not. A common traveller mistake is not researching a destination properly, especially for little things like the language that is spoken. If you know beforehand that most people speak a different language, you have enough time to learn the basics of the language, such as greeting, how to ask for directions, etc. In fact, locals are more relaxed around tourists who make an effort to speak at least one word of their language.

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