They say the best way to learn a language is to get thrown in at the deep end; visit the country which speaks the desired language and immerse yourself into the culture and interaction with others without relying on your mother-tongue. However, this does not simply mean book a two-week holiday to Spain and get ordering a drink or two, they are talking about relocating to a country for a prolonged amount of time, aiming to live as a local and speaking your first language as little as possible.
This is particularly challenging for Brits as we usually find that wherever we go in Europe, English is spoken at some level by staff in at least the retail and hospitality industry, and locals also tend to know some English too. Because of this privilege-problem Brits and other English speakers face, it is important to do it right to make sure you learn the language quickly and efficiently.
But how do you go about organising this?
Look no further than Lingoo, “world’s online language homestay club”
Lingoo is a beautifully simple and safe way to set up:
Two families take turns to offer hospitably to each other; either as an entire family just the adult members or the children.
Homestays (both hosting and staying with a host)
Stay with a host family to authentically speak the host language amongst yourselves. Alternatively welcome a keen lingo-learning person your home to learn your language and about your culture.
A stay as a language au pair
A language au pair staying with you
All of which can be organised for an adult, a child/teenager or a family group!
Easy to use
Simply search according to:
Lingoo offers an extremely wide range of languages from French, to Mandarin, to Afrikaans and Zulu! More significantly, Lingoo has plenty of hosts, au pairs and willing exchanges spanning across all ages, from almost every language imaginable – covering all the major European languages. You’ll be absolutely spoilt for choice!
What you are looking for
Are you looking to host a family, individual or au pair? Are you looking to join a host and immerse yourself into their language, culture and way of living? Or are you looking to learn/teach a language as an au pair in a host family?
Paid trip vs Exchange trip
This is concerning whether you are wanting to make money from au pairing, whether that be learning along the way or teaching your language to others, or whether you are simply wanting to embark on an exchange trip.
Preference for whether you want to be inside or outside the EU
Here you don’t have to specify, but it is best to consider the pros and cons of staying inside or outside of the EU depending of your citizenship and how long you aim to go for (a visa may be required). As a side note, keep in mind that if you are wanting to learn French outside of France itself, the lingo may vary slightly!
Once chosen the above, you can further filter your preferences to suit your lifestyle choices according to:
- Exclude house with pets
- Only one guest at a time
- Work experience offered
From there, results according to your preferences will appear and you will be able to view profiles and the option to begin conversation with hosts/exchanges, once you have registered and set up your own profile.
If you find something which suits you, Lingoo conveniently allows you to book and finalise your exchange, stay or hosting through their website via their secure online reservation tool. You will receive a contract including all the important details you will need for your homestay.
Why go down this route?
Lingoo offers something that a classroom never could! It promotes full immersion into a different culture, forcing you to ditch your mother-tongue and learn the language in the most authentic of ways – in a country that speaks it! All with the comfort of a trusted host to help with the transition, and the potential for international friendships to flourish.