10 Non-English Speaking Countries Where Pretty Much Everyone Speaks English

  • Luke Armstrong
Mar 30, 2017

If you are reading this, then it is safe to assume you speak English. But maybe you still struggle with your Japanese, Icelandic, French, an Kachequel...

Over the years I've noticed that when I recommend to people that they visit a particular country, sometimes they get an uncomfortable look in their eyes. “But..,” they say with trepidation, “I don't speak Croatian." But don't worry, most Croatians will speak English to you.

If you are fluent in English, you are in luck when it comes to world travel. English is arguably the most useful language to speak on the planet and the lingua franca amongst internationals abroad.

In this article, I offer you some tips to keep in mind so that you can have your epic adventure in a foreign land and communicate with the people too.

1. Germany - Das Fine if you Don't Speak German!

Come join us in Germany where we have da best beer in the world! We can tell you about how delicious our beer is in German, the language of Albert Einstein, Beethoven, and Diane Kruger. But if you don't speak German, that's no problem—Kein problem!

More than two-thirds of Germany's population speaks English. To really dive into Germany's English speaking culture, you can listen to the country's most revered English language singer, David Hasselhoff.

2. The Netherlands — English and Education Mecca

More than 90% of the locals in across the Netherlands have command of the English language, making it a seamless country for English speakers to negotiate.

The ease of communication and higher education options make this a prime place for undergraduate and postgraduate studies taught in English. Why study in Idaho if you could study for the same price in The Netherlands at an internationally recognized university?

There are more than 2,100 English courses available, many at postgraduate level. Costs are as competitive as education gets. EU citizens annual education costs in Holland start at $2,200/ year. If you're not from the EU,costs commence at $6,800/year.

3. Greece - It's All English to Me

On the economic side of English speaking European travel, Greece is a highly rated option.

Forget all of the news stories you've absorbed where Greece is portrayed as economically doomed. The people of Greece are still among the happiest you meet. Greeks are warm and friendly to visitors. They can't wait to meet you and pour you a drink (for some reason many a Greek’s ambition is to buy tequila for foreigners).

4. Basically All the Nordic Countries Speak English

Norway, Finland, Sweden, Iceland, and Denmark may disagree on who the best Bandy player is, but still three-fourths could disagree about this in English.

5. Philippines - English at its most Chill

92% of Filipinos speak English. Due to the jovial nature of the Philippines, these conversations are relaxed and playful, filled with local flavor and a joyful energy.

6. Singapore - English Lingua Franca of Asia

Singapore is a uniquely bustling city that is the crossroads of Asian culture communicating in English as the common tongue. Part of Singapore's uniqueness is that it is one of only three surviving city states still in existence in the world.

There is no distinct Singaporean culture per se. Rather, the common thread that unites Singapore is its diversity. Nearly every day is a fiesta in Singapore since scores of heritages and their holidays are observed in this ever-celebrating city.

7. Communicate in English in Croatia

Between 2015-2016, Western Europe received like no increase in tourist growth. So Western Europe still is not a hotspot for the more than half billion tourists that come to Europe each year, Western Europe remains a favorite place to travel for in-the-know-travelers who appreciate the cuisine, culture, and affordable cost. With half of the population speaking English, Croatia is Western Europe's most easily navigated linguistic destination for English speaker.

8. Puerto Rico - Latin America's English Hub

While Spanish is the one language that many Americans tend to speak at least un poco of, not everyone has been quick to board this emerging language boat.

For those wanting to experience Latin American culture without trying to remember all those words from a language class, Half of the everyone you meet in Puerto Rico is an English speaker happy to help you practice your Spanish and help you out when the words won't come.

9. Micronesia - Chill Island Nations Who Hope You Brought Cigarettes

Micronesia is a uniquely offbeat area that I hope everyone has the chance to see you someday. For me it is uniquely special as my parents met while in the Peace Corps in the Marshall Islands—a place where 97% of the locals speak some English.

Across the island chain Federated States of Micronesia that includes the countries of Kiribati, Palau, Nauru, Vanuatu, more than half the local speak English.  Based on the tales my dad used to tell many Micronesians will consider you a waste of Westerner if they can't bum a smoke off you. . .

10. Morocco - English Speakers are Welcome (So Long as you Buy a Rug)

While only 15% of the population of Morocco are English speakers, this is a high percentage in terms of experiencing a country with a Middle Eastern culture. Well technically in Africa, Morocco is a traveler and tourist haven showcasing art, culture, language, and heritage from Europe, Africa, and Arabia.

English will be the language that most shopkeepers will use when trying to sell you a rug – and experience you will come to know well on any visit to Morocco.

While we are happy to provide you with this guide of these English travel, we also hope you're open to the adventure that exploring a new culture and language has to offer. Everyone starts learning a language by not speaking it, and there is no better way to learn a language than trying to communicate through a language barrier. Tally-ho traveler! 

About the Author

luke armstrong

Luke Maguire Armstrong is the author of "The Nomad's Nomad." He has spent the last decade traveling, writing and designing, and funding philanthropic programs around the world.

Read more of Luke’s blogs Visit Luke's website travelwritesing.com

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