What South East Asian language should I learn if I plan on traveling throughout SE Asia?
I plan on traveling for an extended amount of time throughout most of South East Asia and before I go I would like to learn at least one of its main languages (besides english) but idk which one I should learn, Thai, Malay, Indonesian? I apprecitate your suggestions/opinions :)
Thank You :)
- 8 years agoFavorite Answer
probably 'malay' or 'indonesia' bcoz they are the largest & most widely spoken language in the SE asia. Indonesian language is actually a form of malay language. the difference between indonesian & malay language is just as the difference btwn American English & Britain English. It is widely spoken in Indonesia, Malaysia, Brunei, Timor Leste and Southern (malay)province of Thailand. Thai language are very difference from malay/indonesian language as the difference btwn German & French.Source(s): I'm currently living in SE asia.
- 8 years ago
Depends on where you're traveling Southeast Asia is very linguistically diverse. Main languages I'd suggest are Thai, Indonesian ( it's the same as Malay ). And if you plan on going up further the Indochinese peninsula, Vietnamese. Cambodian also if you plan to visit there, you won't need to learn Laos, since it is the same as the Thai language, just named differently for political reasons. But learning all of these will be difficult as all the languages I've mentioned are all parts of different language families.
And many languages on the Indochina peninsula are very tonal, meaning they make the same sound, but can use pitch to differentiate words.
Singapore speaks english but with a chinese grammar twist to it when spoken casually. Singapore is a good place to stop to brush up on language skills.
However take heed traveling to remote areas, there are hundreds of languages that I have not mentioned. Most of these languages are isolated to minorities living in remote villages. Stick to big cities and you'll be good.
and some further information, the main language families of SouthEast Asia are
Hmong-Mien ( actually Hmong Mien is pretty isolated )Source(s): Extensive Geographical Study
- Anonymous6 years ago
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- Samphors WellsLv 48 years ago
They speak different languages from each others. Maybe you'll have to learn all languages. If you know Thai, you can use it in Laos because many people in Laos can speak Thai. If you know Malay, you can use it in Indonesia because these 2 languages are very similar.
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- 8 years ago
We do communicate in English in Thailand, Malaysia, and Indonesia. However, if you learn Malay, you will be able to communicate with both Malaysians and Indonesians.
- Anonymous7 years ago
But if you wanna travel to Malay, don't speak Indonesian unless you wanna make others laugh at you.
- Anonymous5 years ago
depends on the person. im japanese and love to learn another cultures. i know language is part of culture coz i majored in japanese literature and studied chinese literature too. we know how difficult to learn another language. this is why they said why you're just learning language. i think not only asian. i know lots of people in the us. some dont learn even spanish. you know those people too right? spanish signs are everywhere and there are lots of spanish native people in the us. i know lots of spanish already and love to learn !! what you want to do is very good thing. keep goin'!!
- KittyLv 48 years ago
i would suggest thai because thailand is better than the rest