I’ve spent time reading language books before travelling so I could get a handle on my destination country’s native tongue. When audiobooks came along that would help me out, I started using those since I could hear pronunciation of the words. Language-teaching podcasts made languages even more accessible, and once iPhone apps hit the scene I knew there’d be one that would trump all of the above methods. It looks as if I’ve found it in TripLingo, which was released today — which just so happens to be Cinco De Mayo…coincidentally.
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TripLingo goes one step beyond the usual when it comes to learning a language, as it customizes the experience for the user. The app asks you a series of questions that reveals what phrases you’re most likely to use while travelling. You enter your name and gender, and then the real questions begin that determine what words and phrases you’re going to need to have at your disposal. You wind up with four versions of phrases based on the Slang Slider: formal, casual, slang, and crazy.
Today’s launch brings TripLingo apps with Spanish (Mexico), French (France) and German (Germany). Other language versions such as Italian (Italy) and Portuguese (Brazil) are on the horizon.
The other cool feature about TripLingo is the cultural references that get thrown in with certain phrases, such as customs like during introductions that the French kiss each other on the cheeks. The app includes a Word Bank with grouped words (e.g. numbers), a 2000 word dictionary, and written articles on the local culture and language.
For those of you interested on giving TripLingo a try, The Next Web has 20 promo codes that TripLingo has provided to our readers. The codes will expire once they’re all gone, so head on over to this link and grab one while you can.
I really wish I’d had TripLingo with me when I went on my Mexican vacation on March; it would have been the most-used app on my iPhone during the trip. The interface is a pleasure to use and it certainly is scalable. If you’re planning on travelling to any country that makes a TripLingo app useful, make sure it gets packed along with the rest of your necessities…because it is one.