Over half of Britons who vacation overseas say they’ve pointed at a restaurant menu to keep away from having to pronounce non-English phrases, a survey suggests.
And virtually half mentioned they had been embarrassed at not with the ability to converse the native language whereas away.
However 80% of greater than 1,700 individuals questioned for the British Council felt it was vital to be taught some phrases.
“Attempting out a couple of phrases is the right solution to get began,” mentioned Vicky Gough, British Council faculties advisor.
The Populus survey discovered 37% of British holidaymakers at all times tried to talk a couple of phrases within the native language however 29% mentioned they had been too scared to strive.
It additionally discovered that 36% felt responsible at asking locals to talk English, whereas:
- 56% resorted to pointing at menus
- 45% relied on the belief that every one locals would converse English
- 42% spoke English extra slowly and loudly
- 15% even tried talking English in a international accent
A minority (15%) admitted to being so unwilling to strive announcing phrases from different languages that they might solely eat in British or quick meals eating places whereas abroad, somewhat than sampling native delicacies.
The same quantity mentioned they most popular staying in self-contained resorts to keep away from native tradition.
“It is nice that many people are keen to have a go at talking the native language whereas abroad,” mentioned Ms Gough.
“It is a significant gesture that can allow you to get probably the most out of your vacation.
“However too many people are nonetheless relying too closely on English alone. And, if this implies we’re lacking out on vacation, think about the impact that our lack of language expertise is having on the UK extra extensively.
“The truth is that having extra of us with the ability to converse no less than a bit of a international language is nice for the UK’s long-term competitiveness, significantly because the nation involves reposition itself on the world stage.
“Talking different languages not solely provides you an understanding of different cultures however is nice for enterprise and for all times too.
“Attempting out a couple of phrases or phrases on vacation this summer time and inspiring our younger individuals to do the identical is the right solution to get began.”
Round one in six of these polled mentioned they may converse a international language to a excessive normal and simply over a 3rd might maintain a primary dialog.
Previous research by the British Council, the UK’s worldwide tradition and training organisation, has discovered that the UK has a scarcity of individuals in a position to converse the 10 most vital world languages, which is prone to hamper the nation’s future prosperity and world standing.