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Feature photo by kool_skatkat. Photo above by .craig.

Learning a new language is difficult. Make it easier by sharing the experience with someone else.

WHEN LIVING ABROAD, communication is the biggest obstacle. Loneliness in a strange land can be truly depressing, and a lack of communication skills may compound your sadness.

So why not kill two birds by learning a new language with a new love?

First and foremost, you will learn much more quickly when you and your partner’s happiness depends on it. There is an added incentive to decipher facial expressions, strange sounds, and frantic hand-waving, if a correct interpretation might lead to a fine meal, good kisses, or a wonderful night under a full moon.

Photo by FranUlloa.

Second, who wants to spend time in a classroom reciting the ABCs, learning how to say “Where is the shoe store?” and other such vital information when an pillow talk and strolls through the park could be the alternative?

The tedium of going back to school for a language is completely washed away when mistakes become opportunities for laughter and inside jokes told years later to friends and family.

Third, the breadth and depth of you language ability will surprise you. If you are dating a native, you will learn words and expressions that no other foreigner in the Greek as a Second Language class is learning. The language becomes not only a mode of communication, but also a living connection to the world around you.

In this way, the country becomes less foreign and its people more accessible when you are able to spit out a few colloquialisms gleaned from your lover-teacher.

Photo by heartarcade.

Fourth, you will have a cuddle companion for trips that you might not have taken if you were alone with your phrasebook. You will see more of the country and be able to find the best places to stay, the cheapest modes of local transportation and eat local cuisine at the right mom and pop shop, because your lover knows these things.

Last and most important, finding a person to share your experience is the whole point of traveling. The connections you make with people is exactly why people pack up and leave home for a few years. In fact, finding a native lover should be the first goal of any person going to live in another country.

All of the above reasons for using love to learn how to communicate revolve around the central theme for traveling: connecting. Have fun.

Community Connection:

So where are the best places to find your new lover and teacher? Check out Sascha’s companion piece: The Love Tour: World’s Best Cities for Singles.

For more on the ups and downs of love on the road, check out Why Sex is the First Real Connection in Foreign Relationships, or How to Travel with your Fiance and Come Back Together.

Language Learning


About The Author

Sascha Matuszak

Sascha Matuszak is a freelance writer living in and out of Asia for the past 8 years. He has written about peasants, Tibetans, artists, revolutionaries, big bosses and various other personalities throughout the years. Check out his candid blog.

  • sascha

    wow. this article is extremely informative and obviously the work of a master. Sascha: you are the illmatic dude.

  • sascha

    thanks homie. I kinda like your style too.

  • Alex

    thanks very much, great information. Keep up the great work.

  • Pingback: Five Reasons Dating Abroad is the Best Way to Learn a Language | The SWAP Blog

  • Hannah In Motion

    Love this! Everyone says the best place to learn a language is in the bedroom, and it’s so true. For me especially, I find big groups intimidating when I’m working on a new language, but one on one communication is less scary and much more rewarding.

  • SX

    This is all true, but don’t use people for this and just bounce after you time is up in the country or at least make it clear from the outset that you may very well leave when your contract or time is up there.

    • Sascha Matuszak

      absolutely, it sounds kinda mercenary when you read through it, but that wasn’t what I was talking about. if yer the mercenary type, re-think your ways before someone gets hurt for good.

  • Staimoor41

               my friend this good page…..!!!

  • Elizabeth Angel Lopez-Hayward

    hehe. I have been told by sooo many people “language learning begins with the tongue”. *wink* annnnnnd I whole-heartedly agree!

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