Overcoming the Language Barrier When Traveling to a Foreign Country

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Spending some time in a foreign country is a great way to expose you and your family to some culture and customs the likes of which you might never have seen before. Learning to broaden your horizons and teaching your children to do the same is something that’s a great experience for the rest of one’s life, and there are a lot of ways that you can enrich your trip by making sure to provide for as complete an adventure as possible. One of the best ways to do this is to make sure that you’ve got some kind of interpreter or translator to help you along with your travels. Even if you don’t make this the case, there are still a lot of ways to overcome a language barrier and make sure that you’re not lost when you’re spending time in another country where you don’t necessarily speak the native tongue. We’ll talk about a few of the best ways to overcome the hurdle that a language barrier can wind up being so that you and your family can have a great trip that goes off without a single hitch. Lucky for you, it’s never been easier to use resources like the Internet to find exactly what you need and guarantee that your trip is every bit as efficient and exciting as you deserve it to be.

You should definitely start doing your research well before you leave if you know you’re going to be spending some time in a place where you don’t speak the language. There are a ton of message boards and forums dedicated specifically to those of us who will be traveling and might need someone who speaks the language to help us get around. You can also use classified sites like CraigsList or any number of other options to get connected with an individual or group who can help you get around and communicate in the ways that you’re going to need to while you’re on a trip. You want to make sure you find someone who is centrally located to where you’ll be doing the majority of your traveling, and you want to make sure the person knows the area very well and can help you find activities that are best suited to the members of your group.

It’s also a smart idea to do your due diligence and study up on whatever language is spoken where you’re going to be spending your vacation. It’s not hard to get yourself a little language primer so you can pick up some of the most important words or key phrases you might find yourself using while you’re on your trip. Whether you go with a professional translation company or find someone on the internet, it’s important to make sure you have a great connection with your interpreter. It’s not too hard to find someone who can help you make the most out of your trip, and when you do you’ll be glad you did, for sure.


  1. In a lot of ways, the language barrier is part of the fun, it’s different from your own. At least that’s what I think. You can buy some amazing electronic translators, though 🙂

  2. Do you ever watch the amazing race?! Its so hard for them to get a simple sentence across. I don’t know how they do it, but I love the show!

  3. I love the show, the amazing race, and often wonder how difficult it must be to travel to so many countries and not be able to get a simple sentence out. EEK!

  4. I haven’t travelled to any country yet where I didn’t know the language, but I imagine I will. When I watch one of my favorite shows, the amazing race, I can’t imagine how difficult it must be to try and say something so simple.

  5. I traveled to Japan ten years ago on my own, and it was really hard getting around with the language barrier. I actually found someone who spoke French and Japanese, and used my very limited French to find out what I needed to do to get train tickets there!

  6. I would definitely take the time to study up on some terms I would need. Plus, I think it’s slightly obnoxious of Americans to expect everyone in the world to know how to speak English.

  7. If I were to travel to another country whose primary language was different than my own, my biggest concern would definitely be communicating. It must be nerve racking to be surrounded by people who can’t understand you.

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