Why Travellers Need to Stop Expecting the World to Speak English

Originally published on Lonely Planet.

It’s concerning seeing travellers trying to communicate with people who don’t speak any English, by using more English.

I first realised how much of a problem this is while staying at a quaint guesthouse in Yunnan, southwest China. I watched the petite, old guesthouse owner, affectionately referred to as Mama Naxi, become embarrassingly flustered as a guest talked to her in English – which she knew a minimal amount. For some reason, the guest thought turning up the volume would help Mama Naxi all of suddenly understand her.  

See the entire piece here.

Featured image credit.

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