Portuguese is a huge global language, spoken across Europe, Latin America and Africa. There are over 280 million Portuguese speakers worldwide, and 75% of them live in Brazil. In December 2016, I spent almost a month in Brazil after having taught myself some Portuguese over the two years prior.  I’m…

Spain is the country that gave me the solid foundations to get to a very good level in Spanish. I was there for just six months, and I got to a near-fluent level in that time. If you want to know how you can improve your español in España, this article has all you need to know.

I have been asked the same questions about being multilingual or learning a language time and time again, so I think it is time I set the record straight about a few things (and point out how annoying your questions are). These are the questions that we have all heard a million times, and should be avoided when talking to a polyglot.

English. It’s a love-hate relationship for most learners. It is the only language that absolutely everyone feels the need to study. Why? This answer is simple, of course. It is the lingua franca of the world, the language almost everyone uses cross-culturally to communicate with each other. English will open so many doors for the average person, allowing them access to better jobs, more people, and possibly migration. This is obvious. But that is not what this article is about. This article’s question is: why English?

On the other hand, if you go to a place and attempt to understand people, attempt to connect deeply with others – feel your tongue moving in a different way as it tackles a new language, feel your face flush as you realise your starting to understand what people are saying, get what you want by negotiating with people, and make memories in a different language… your experience is going to be that much more rewarding.

In my opinion, people often treat the topic of speaking a language with far too much casualty. For me, while I may have been able to understand and communicate with everyday topics, if I couldn’t discuss a zombie apocalypse or explain how I was feeling and why in Spanish, I couldn’t speak Spanish.