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10 razones para aprender español
(Adapted with permission from Hotel Borbollón)
Did you know that Spanish is one of the three most taught languages in the world? It’s a fact as a matter of fact. As a language passport to more than 20 countries around the globe, Spanish offers a wealth of work, social and travel opportunities.
If you’re hungry to make connections and explore other cultures, there are many good reasons to learn Spanish! This Romance language, spoken on several continents by more than 500 million people, is guaranteed to inspire you to travel, communicate, eat, drink and be merry.
The Spanish language is strongly influenced by its origins in Latin and, over time, has incorporated vocabulary words from Arabic and pre-Columbian languages.
If you are looking for a reason to learn Spanish, or are unsure where to start, then this article should give you that extra boost! Here is a list (by no means exhaustive) of 10 good-enough reasons to learn Spanish. ¡Vamos!
1. Spanish is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world
Spanish is spoken by more than 500 million native speakers all over the world. The Spanish language, also known as Castilian in Spain, is the official language in 21 countries in Europe and the Americas, and an important one in many other countries across the globe.
In the UK, Spanish has long been one of the most popular languages studied in schools, along with French and German, and continues to gain ground. And in the US, Spanish is by far the most spoken language after English (around 14% of the population) and over 6.5 million students study Spanish at the high school level.
Spanish is the third most studied language in the world after English and French. Furthermore, by 2050, it could become more influential than French, according to researcher Kai L. Chan of the European Institute of Business Administration (INSEAD).
2. Spanish enhances your career prospects
Learning a language not only makes your CV more attractive to recruiters, but it can also help you climb the ladder within your current workplace.
With new markets experiencing unprecedented economic growth, learning Spanish is truly an asset to put forward in the world of business.
Most European countries have well-developed trade relations with Spain. Spanish is now the second most widely spoken language in international business and at major political gatherings.
3. To study or work abroad
Spain is the most popular European destination for students thanks to the Erasmus university exchange program. There is also a large European expat population in Spain, mainly in the cities of Madrid, Barcelona and Alicante … with a rising number of Brits, even after Brexit.
As for Latin America, the continent is increasingly popular with globetrotting students. South America and some Caribbean islands have fabulous landscapes and rich history. This is one of the reasons why relocating to South America is so popular with those looking to improve their language skills while also enjoying a unique travel experience.
4. To explore beautiful countries
Full immersion has always been the best way to quickly absorb the subtleties of a language. Learning Spanish offers students a wide range of Spanish-speaking countries to visit: Spanish is an official language in 21 countries (including Spain and most of Latin America).
Furthermore, Latin American countries are increasingly popular destinations due to the tremendous diversity of cultures, breathtaking landscapes, dynamic cities, and very reasonable cost of living. Meanwhile, in Europe, Spain remains one of the top tourist destinations after France.
5. Learning Spanish is easier if you already speak a Romance language
Perhaps you already speak, or have studied French or Italian at school? Spanish comes from the same Latin root as those two languages, so it’s easier to learn Spanish once you have a grasp of another Romance language. In phonetic languages with very similar grammatical structures, you will quickly recognize certain words and sounds.
That said, even with this advantage, learning Spanish is a challenge, and it goes without saying that a sustained effort is necessary to learn the language. Learning Spanish won’t teach you to sing, but music is an excellent way to improve your knowledge.
Learn Spanish with Hotel Borbollón
6. Spanish-speaking culture is rich and diverse
Music, cinema, gastronomy, and traditions make for an extremely rich and diverse Spanish-speaking culture. Culture also means art and history, and the Spanish-speaking world is certainly not short on them.
Famous for their architecture and history, Spanish cities and regions, whether big or small, are outstanding places to visit. From the Basque Country to Andalusia, from Castilla to Catalonia, via Galicia, each place boasts unique architecture.
Spain is well known for its food, its dances, its intoxicating music, but perhaps most of all for its art. It has produced some of the most influential figures of modern art, renowned internationally for their exciting, innovative work, such as Velázquez, Picasso and Dalí and more. Spanish artists have pioneered genres that attract art lovers year after year.
If you are feeling adventurous, Spain has dozens of islands off its Mediterranean and Atlantic coasts. From the Canaries to the Balearic Islands, these are extraordinary, authentic places to explore. Spain also has two cities, Ceuta and Melilla, that border Morocco.
There are plenty of opportunities for history buffs: follow the path of Che Guevara in Argentina or Cuba, explore ancient Incan sites in Peru, admire Ushuaïa, or experience the magic of Easter Island. In Mexico, lovers of colorful celebrations will not be disappointed with the famous festival of the dead, El Día de Muertos!
Taking an interest in a country’s past and its cultural traditions is an excellent way to immerse yourself in the language and enrich your learning experience.
7. Watch Spanish films and series and listen to podcasts
There are plenty of established and rising stars in the world of Spanish and Latin American cinema, with internationally renowned directors like Claudia Llosa, Alejandro Amenábar, Pedro Almodóvar, and Guillermo del Toro.
Thanks to streaming platforms, and much to the delight of language learners, we can all enjoy classic and more contemporary series in their original language: La Casa de Papel, Las Chicas del Cable, Narcos, and Elite are among the most popular TV series worldwide. Platforms are increasingly making a point of producing and highlighting "foreign" productions in their line-ups. Learners generally have the option of adding original language subtitles (or deciding to do without!) to make the experience easier.
As for Spanish podcasts, try Radio Ambulante, a narrative podcast in the form of an interview, that spotlights life in Latin America. For something more educational, there is the Radialistas podcast which covers a range of topics related to Latin America and the Caribbean.
8. Learning Spanish helps you appreciate other Romance languages
For example, Spanish and French speakers can always find linguistic similarities between their languages and can even manage to make themselves understood with a few simple words. English speakers need not feel left out, as the roots of many words also have similarities (for example, product > producto, delicious > delicioso/a, salary > salario).
9. To meet people from around the world
In the age of globalization, increased travel, and language immersion trips, Spanish will enable you to communicate with a substantial proportion of the world’s population.
There are so many ways of meeting new people these days: through professional networks, language immersion programs, organized trips, Erasmus exchanges, and more. Dating apps, social networking groups, and language tandems also offer a great way to make new friends, but you still need to be able to communicate, right?
10. Travel to the US with an added advantage
Did you know that around 43 million people speak Spanish as a first language in the United States, and a further 12 million as a second language? This makes Spanish the second most spoken language in the country after English. A study by the Cervantes Institute even showed that there are more Spanish speakers in the United States than in Spain!
Now that you know a few of the many excellent reasons to learn Spanish, check out Lawless Spanish for Beginners to start learning on your own.
Or if you need a helping hand, try Hotel Borbollón, which offers short, personalized 10-minute lessons for long-term learning:
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