No one is expecting you to be fluent in French or perfect in Portuguese, but barking English at people when you’re in a non-English speaking country is just plain rude.
And contrary to popular belief, increasing the volume of your monologue won’t help our foreign friends to understand.
Instead of playing the ignorant English-only speaker, take the time to learn a few basic phrases that will at least equip you with a rudimentary level of good manners.
‘Hello/goodbye’, ‘please/thank you’ and ‘three beers please’ is the minimum you should have in your foreign vocabulary bag, but if you memorise a few extra lines from your phrase book, you’ll also impress your mates, earn a little respect from the locals and help to rectify the reputation of English speakers as being the most lazy language learners in the world.
See our mini language guides for a few quick phrases and check out this week’s Website of the week : Omniglot.com – a site packed full of essential information for those interested in learning a new language or just wanting a few useful phrases before heading abroad.
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