Living in another country can be somewhat intimidating, especially if you do not speak the language of that country.
Below mentioned are four survival hacks that can be adopted to survive in a country when you do not speak the language. Cheers to traveling like a champ to a country, where you do not speak the language.
Survival Hack #1: Normalizing Your Fright
It is a staggering experience when you are hit with the realization that you can’t ask for a glass of water or directions in your native tongue. However, you should not let your finite language skills restrict you. Know that you are not the first one and you will most likely not be the last one on Earth who is going to be living in a country where they do not understand the language. Everyday thousands of people travel through marketplaces, see the Wonders of the World, and check off the activities on their itineraries in countries where they have no idea what is being spoken. If these people can survive, then you can do it too.
Survival Hack #2: There is Strength in Numbers
Unless you will be traveling to some isolated island, you are most likely to run into other people that can also speak and understand English. Yes, you can also serendipitous run into a fellow native speaker at some bus stop while you are waiting to go visit a tourist attraction, but you will have a better luck in hostels. Because hostels are an amazing place to meet other travelers that speak the same language as you do. In many hostels there are “common rooms” where guests can get a space to congregate. In these common rooms, one can make travel buddies that are willing to explore the new country with you. Also, at many hostels, tours are also at times being offered which provide hostel residents with the opportunity to visit the sights as well as to get around the town with the help of a guide
Survival Hack # 3: Write it all Down
Are you worried about telling your taxi driver how to get to your hostel? Or you do not remember how to find the marketplace?
Well write it down. As you are attempting to book your lodging or using google to see all the sites that you would like to visit, try to write them all down in English along with its translation. For example, if you want to visit the Great Wall of China, type “The Great Wall of China in Chinese Characters” in your search engine and then print it out. Also, when you reach the airport and you are checking into your accommodation, then more than likely, there are going to be people who will be willing to translate for you your destination of choice. Do not hesitate to ask anyone.
If you are taking the public bus, before you leave your place of residence, take a picture near to your hotel or hostel just in case you forget. Therefore, in such a case when you are boarding the bus, remember to show the driver the stop you need to get off at and they will more than likely let you know when the bus has reached your destination.
Survival Hack #4: Install an App for Translation
There are multiple applications that you can download which will help you translate what you want to say. Simply record your message, select your target language, and hit submit; your message will then be translated for the other person to hear.
Living in a country with a different language will help you make memories to last a lifetime.