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23 Ways To Immerse Yourself In A Language Without Going Anywhere

You can surround yourself with your target language without having to pay for a plane ticket.

People always say that the best way to learn a language is by immersing yourself. Unfortunately, not all of us can afford to spend months on vacation in a country where a different language is spoken. Don’t get discouraged, though. Thanks to the miracle of technology, and some human ingenuity, you can surround yourself with a new language anytime, anywhere. Here are just a few ways to do that, and if you have any of your own, share them with us in the comments.

  1. Change your phone’s language. This one’s easy.
  2. Listen to a podcast or the news in a new language. Yes, I know you don’t need more podcasts to listen to, but do it anyway.
  3. Watch a TV show you like with subtitles in a different language. Netflix has a helpful section that allows you to search by subtitle languages.
  4. Label everything you own with post-its. This will also show your guests how cultured you are.
  5. Cook a meal using recipes in a different language. Any mistakes you make will become very apparent at dinner time, though.
  6. Explore parts of the internet in other languages. Yes, the lingua franca of the internet is English, but there are lots of websites in other languages. There are lots of subreddits where you can avoid English.
  7. Read the news in a different language. Face it, you’re sick of reading the news in English anyway. The BBC offers lots of languages, but you can also read the local news to learn about the culture of the language you’re learning.
  8. Train your dog or cat in a different language. Just kidding, cats only speak Purrsian.
  9. Get a pen pal who lives another country. There are lots of places online you can meet people who are just as ready to learn English.
  10. Watch movies from other countries. You can’t really appreciate Ratatouille until you’ve seen it in French.
  11. Write out your to-do list in another language. As long as you don’t get stuck trying to remember what you wrote.
  12. Order food from other countries. And maybe try to get the pronunciation right.
  13. Play video games in another language. There’s no reason the only language you need to learn in World of Warcraft is Elven.
  14. Speak to your coworkers in a different language. This surely won’t annoy them at all.
  15. Create a finsta for your language alter ego. @mary is a regular gal, but @marita can be whoever you want her to be.
  16. Start to tweet in another language. If the Pope can tweet in Latin, so can you.
  17. Read books in translation. You’ll probably want to keep a dictionary nearby.
  18. Read BuzzFeed in another language. Don’t pretend you’ve never clicked on their articles.
  19. Join Facebook groups established in other countries. Memes are the only universal language.
  20. Listen to music in other languages. No, not just “Despacito.”
  21. Learn to curse in a new language. You’ll probably get in less trouble if you do.
  22. Journal in another language. This is also a good way to record your language journey, and you can see yourself getting better over time.
  23. Oh, and also, you could get a language-learning app. We have a few suggestions. Fine, one suggestion.