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16

If you know Russian, use it. Despite the political situation, Georgians are smart and open minded. They may not like the Russian government but they love Russian people and they love the Russian language. I'm pretty convinced after seven months in Georgia that people learn Russian there for just the same reason foreigners everywhere learn English: it's cool ...


15

I've been to Ukraine, although only Kiev and Chernobyl (and the train from and to Rzezow, Poland). My Russian at the time was very limited. But for me the most important step was learning to read Cyrillic. Just being able to sound out letters suddenly makes train stations, street signs and the like manageable. I still don't speak Russian - aside from a ...


9

I would say China other than Beijing and Shanghai. But even in big cities there are parts where people don't even understand "yes" or "no" Also, recently I had some troubles in Spain as well. So, I guess if you can also learn Chinese and Spanish then you could be anywhere in the world.


9

For example South America. In my experience, English knowledge was generally poor. You would need to know at least basic Spanish. It would be easier to say, where English and Russian would be enough. I expect, that Russian would be useful only in former USSR and maybe some Eastern European countries. In Western Europe should be relatively easy to find ...


8

That is true that relationships are a little cold, but I didn't notice any open hostility while traveling to Baltic countries. Since people there have different attitude to Russian language (some may consider it as language of their oppressors), I try by default to start conversation in English (it is spoken at sufficient level by many people), if the person ...


7

In the central and western Africa. People beside of their own African languages know French and Arabic in most African countries but they do not know English or Russian. Small cities or rural areas of most countries around the world that they do not speak English or Russian and only know their own mother tongue. You can find them from India, Turkey, Iran ...


7

In short, no. Remember, you're dealing with a bunch of government bureaucrats here, you'll still need to satisfy every item on their checklist. That said, having evidence of previous travel and (the important part!) having returned home will be helpful in proving that you're not planning to migrate to the EU permanently. However, I don't think you'll be ...


7

So then, let's look to official statistics. Lithuania - According to the Lithuanian population census of 2001, about 84% of the country's population speak Lithuanian as their native language, 8.2% are native speakers of Russian and 5.8% of Polish. More than 60% are fluent in Russian, while only about 16% say they can speak English. Latvia - In the 2000 ...


7

I made it across Russia on the Trans Siberian Railway with a handful of phrases, knowledge of the Cyrillic alphabet, a phrase book, a Point It book and a dictionary. Some hotel receptionists spoke English but other than that, people only spoke Russian.


6

In fact, in Russia English is very well understood. However, to speak and express our thoughts from Russian to English is not so great to do and be understood properly. This applies to almost any city with a population of more than 100,000 people - as the level of education in these cities is very good. The question is - do you want to visit the real outback ...


6

Definitely not Ukrainian If you know Russian AND English you will be able to communicate with the vast majority of people. Now choosing the language to try first is a little bit tricky. I would say that with people who are definitely under 30 try English first. With people over 40 try Russian first. In Riga (not sure about the rest of Latvia) almost ...


5

Don't focus on either language because you are unlikely to achieve reasonable proficiency in either considering a few hours per week for a few weeks. What you should focus on is reading, especially place names. Both the Russian and Ukrainian alphabets are similar to each other and not very different from the Latin script that you are familiar with. Learn ...


5

It'd be easier to just say where you can get by. List of English speaking countries in order of % of English speakers. A similar list for Russian. Serbian and Polish and Ukrainian are very close to Russian so replace the Russian in the previous link with Polish and Serbian and Ukrainian.


5

The former satellite states of USSR. While old people still speak Russian there due to enforced "friendship" with the USSR, many people are now much more hostile because of the tainted past of oppression. While driving in the rural parts of Poland, I needed extensively my word list of polish phrases. Forget English and Russian there, I was even more ...


5

Russian, no contest. Not quite where you mention (presumably thankfully!) but not far off: The Russian language in Ukraine is the most common first language in the Donbass and Crimea regions, and the predominant language in large cities in the East and South of the country. In Ukraine the ratio may be nearer 50/50 but there are approximately five ...


5

Yes, in general, Georgians have some issues with Russians. But, at the same time, Russians are still (or perhaps, again) regularly visiting the country as tourists, so it ain't that bad. And if it's obvious you're not Russian (for example due to your limited Russian), you won't easily be taken for one. Russian is most certainly more widely spoken than ...


4

Georgian is very hard to learn. It would be a great challenge for you. This is the separate language, having very little common with any other language (with exception of Svan and one other language, both spoken in Georgia). Also the alphabet is not similar to anything else, and I've learned only 2 letters of it. When it comes to Russian, Russian is widely ...


2

Well, Georgians speak Georgian, English (which is becoming 2nd most-common spoken language) and Russian. Older people speak Russian and Georigan only, while the younger generation mostly speaks English and Georgian, but nowadays you can communicate with people there in the English language.


1

Russian and Ukranian are not so very close languages. But the locals used to practice funny type of conversations when one interlocutor speaks Russian (Ukranian) and receives and understands an answer in Ukranian (Russian). May be this not the case now... If I were you, I would concentrate on Cyrillic alphabet, so that I would be able to understand simple ...


1

Five to ten hours a week for a for weeks is enough to understand a little bit of the basics of either Ukrainian or Russian. The languages are very similar, so in that sense it doesn't matter too much which language you pick. That said, if you're going to western Ukraine, it'd be more sensible to try your luck with Ukrainian as Russian is more common in the ...


1

It actually varies by region. Most people you will encounter will understand Russian but not necessarily respond to you in the same language for various reasons. So depending on where you will be visiting you may need to be able to do both and a few weeks crash course in either one will be insufficient unless you are familiar with other languages in the ...


1

In Russia, there are still a lot of people who don't understand English for good. Ukrainian language is better here, but also not perfect. In Baltic, Russian may be problematic inside youth. ">30" people mostly can to use this language. I think best choice is Russian language. English as a second.



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