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Old 22 Aug 2007
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Language skills

Hi all,

This might sound like a dumb question but I'm hoping to do a run to Morocco next spring and I'm wondering if it would be worth learning a second language.

I've checked various guide books and HUBB entries but very little is said about language or communicating in Morocco and I hate the idea of coming across as the stereotyped "shouty Brit" tourist. (We used to have an empire don't you know!)

Would it be worth taking some basic lessons in Arabic or perhaps brushing up on my exceedingly poor high school French?

Any advice would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 22 Aug 2007
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I,ve been there for 4 times in the last 5 years and my poor school french
was ok
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Old 22 Aug 2007
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Smile how much time do you have?!

I'm learning Arabic at the moment - and it's a proper investment in time!

They'll really appreciate your (bad) French, the important thing is to make the effort (smile a lot as well!).

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Old 23 Aug 2007
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Thanks guys. I'll stick with my botched together French. I'm sure it'll amuse people, if nothing else!
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Old 24 Aug 2007
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Originally Posted by Fet600 View Post
Would it be worth taking some basic lessons in Arabic?
A few basic Arabic expressions are always useful for traveling as it's such a widely spoken language - a bit like knowing a few basic Spanish phrases. Added to that, the basic Arabic greetings and courtesies are known and used by Muslims around the world regardless of race or native language. I don't think you need to take lessons though.

This page gives you a good 'starter pack' although it sticks to Classical Arabic and you'll undoubtedly come across alternative forms in Morocco, Egypt, Sudan, Dubai or wherever. The basic phrases are used throughout the Arabic-speaking world and if you make an effort to communicate in Arabic you'll quickly work out which ones they are.

Have fun in Morocco.
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Old 24 Aug 2007
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berber in the south

In some of the more remote areas in the south, in villages etc they don't speak arabic or french - just berber, and there are different dialects...

Smile, use your hands, etc. My french is good but it meant nothing the further south we went in Morocco with nomads etc.

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