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Foreign Tongues

Look, not every language sounds as musical as French. But nothing grates like an American tourist compensating for a lack of the most basic grasp of the local language by repeating their requests even louder in English.

No one expects travelers to be fluent in the primary language of every country they visit, but as Post Senning points out, “We live in an information age. If you’re capable of making reservations, getting on a plane and getting to another country, you’re capable of learning the bare minimum of what’s acceptable behavior over there, such as the language that’s spoken.”

“Making a minimum effort to learn the ‘magic words’ can go a long way to show your effort: ‘please,' 'thank you,’ ‘hello,’ ‘goodbye,’ bathroom,’ I’m sorry.’”

Giuglio Gil | hemis.fr | Getty Images