Taking a language bath is a learning method many of those who want to learn a new language are keen on. You stay in a city, you go to some language course during the day, maybe you take on a job at the local supermarket and you go out at night to get in touch with locals who can help you to fine-tune your new skill set. A lovely way to learn a new language, sure, but not all cities are created equally to this regard. And funnily enough, those wanting to learn French shouldn’t set up camp in France.
A new study carried out by Holidu – who used data collected by Duolingo for their enquiries – takes a look at the best destinations worldwide for those wanting to learn French, Spanish, German or Portuguese. A long list of international cities were analysed and weighed against a number of factors. For example, the number of language schools in the city, where you can either enrol as a student to learn or as a teacher and improve your own language skills by interacting with locals. The average cost of living for one month and the digital nomad community rating so that you can meet and make friends with other like-minded individuals. And of course, not to be forgotten, the friendliness towards foreigners and the safety of each city.
France is nowhere to be seen
All in all, the top ten is offers a wide variety of destinations where you can get acquainted with numerous languages: Taipei, Warsaw and Zagreb are all in the top three. However, there’s not a single French-speaking city in sight. It’s only on the 49th place in the list that you’ll be able to spot Montréal, Québec, located in the French-speaking part of Canada. And those who really only want to learn French in France will have to scroll down all the way to the 111th place for Bordeaux, with Paris being only in the 128th spot of the ranking.
The reason for the bad score of French cities in general isn’t that difficult to figure out. First of all, the friendliness vis-a-vis foreigners isn’t great, secondly, the cost of living – especially in Paris – is very high and when it comes to safety, most French cities don’t even reach 50%. A language holiday in Montréal on the other hand could make most of us pretty satisfied, judging by Holidu’s ranking.