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79 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

This is similar to my experience when I first moved to Spain. I was initially a bit miffed as well, until I asked a waiter one day why he replied in English when I spoke to him. It was because ...
Aaron F's user avatar
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68 votes
Accepted

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

They do appreciate, however, in practical situations one resorts to the language that's more convenient for communication purposes. Most people mean it either practical or well intended, by making it ...
Dan's user avatar
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37 votes
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What connotations does "Danke Schön" carry?

Danke schön is a contraction of Ich danke Ihnen schön which, literally translated, means "I thank you nicely". So the schön does not refer to the addressee but to the quality of the thanks. ...
Tilman Schmidt's user avatar
16 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

Wir empfinden es oft als anstrengend, wenn wir raten müssen, wie viel oder wie wenig Deutsch unser Gegenüber versteht. Und wir sind schnell frustriert oder sogar genervt, wenn wir uns wiederholen ...
rackandboneman's user avatar
9 votes

Wie soll ich in einem Zug um Hilfe fragen?

Die Antwort von Janka ist m.E. inhaltlich vollständig. Jedoch würde ich das "bitte" nicht an das Ende stellen, denn es klingt für mich persönlich nach "ups, Freundlichkeit vergessen" oder "nun mach ...
Shegit Brahm's user avatar
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8 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

As a former American exchange student to Germany, the best advice I got back then was to repeat to anyone constantly answering you in English (after you've tried your best to speak German) that the ...
Oozecandy's user avatar
8 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

As a Swiss but non-native German speaker living in Germany, I'd like to add a few things to the good points other answers and comments make so far. The central part of your wondering seems to be the ...
theSameTime's user avatar
7 votes

Wie soll ich in einem Zug um Hilfe fragen?

Entschuldigung! Könnten Sie mir vielleicht mit meinem Gepäck helfen, bitte? Das deckt im Prinzip alles ab, den Rest kannst du dann mit Handzeichen erklären. Und dann nicht vergessen: Ich danke Ihnen!...
Janka's user avatar
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7 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

Danke, dass Sie auf Englisch antworten. Wenn es Ihnen nichts ausmacht, würde ich gerne mein Deutsch verbessern.
Joachim Weiß's user avatar
6 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

I've lived in Germany for 15 years, passed the B2 exam on the way to my permanent residence permit, and am an internal IT consultant for a big German auto parts company. I still get "Englished" in ...
Amanda Debler's user avatar
4 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

In East Germany people older than 50 or so learned Russian in school, not English, so your attempts to speak German will be more appreciated there. On a personal note, my American partner claims that ...
Peter - Reinstate Monica's user avatar
4 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

I'm born and living in Berlin. I spent part of my youth in Hanover. The dialect of German is basically the most normal German langue, Hanover has no dialect by definition. It never even crossed my ...
Volker Siegel's user avatar
3 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

First of all I´d like to confirm the other answers: I´ve met the same thing in Italy because people are usually doing their jobs - which goes faster in English than if they help me learning their ...
Jessica's user avatar
  • 139
2 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

… how to proceed in these situations? Start speaking terrible English with Spanish or Russian accent. That will heal them.
Janka's user avatar
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2 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

I found the best approach was keeping a sense of humor, try your German but be prepared for blank stares or some muttering and go with the flow - eventually your German will improve to the point that ...
FatesLieutenant's user avatar
2 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

I experienced the same situation in Japan. I wasn't very proficient in Japanese at that time, and my colleagues would always talk back to me in English. In my experience, people will not switch to ...
Right leg's user avatar
  • 121
2 votes

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

If you want to be addressed in German, just say "Bitte?" when someone replies to you in English. That's a polite request to repeat something you didn't catch, and since it's in German, you're almost ...
Dmitry Grigoryev's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Gesprochene Sprache lernen

Ich würde eine Sammlung von sogenannten "Dialogkarten" empfehlen, oder eine andere Quelle mit diesem Schwerpunkt. "Dialoge" oder "Gespräche" sind die Situationen in denen ...
Allerleirauh's user avatar
2 votes

Gesprochene Sprache lernen

Gesprochene Sprache kann man nicht aus Büchern lernen. In Büchern steht zwangsweise immer geschriebene Sprache. Gesprochene Sprache lernt man, indem man mit Menschen spricht. Es hilft auch, sich Filme ...
Hubert Schölnast's user avatar
2 votes
Accepted

Listening comprehension

By 00:20 in your audio she is saying: "Zusatzzahl" (that would mean additional number) and after them she said "neun" (9, nine).
SwissCodeMen's user avatar
  • 2,240
1 vote

How to ask somebody if I may adress him/her with du in German?

The phrases "Darf ich Sie duzen?" ans "Darf ich Dich duzen?" are grammatically correct. But using Dich in "Darf ich Dich duzen?" anticipates a positive answer, thus I ...
Paul Frost's user avatar
  • 10.7k
1 vote

How to ask somebody if I may adress him/her with du in German?

Your sentence is missing its object: Darf ich Sie duzen? or Darf ich Dich duzen? But mostly, we don't explicitly ask like this. How to address a person is often derived from indirect cues and the ...
Henning Kockerbeck's user avatar
1 vote
Accepted

Identify a conversation

"Grüss dich Anna, das ist Arnia" "Tag Sabira" "Hallo Arnia" A conversation of several people who introduce themselves and greet them. I don't know whether "Sabira&...
SwissCodeMen's user avatar
  • 2,240
1 vote

What's an indifferent way to answer "Wie geht's?"

A favorite of mine: "Besser nicht fragen!" but that might be already too negative (meaning "trust me, you'd rather not know!").
xmjx's user avatar
  • 109
1 vote

What's an indifferent way to answer "Wie geht's?"

I'd like to point out that asserting you're well in a sufficiently unenthusiastic manner works perfectly well too. Ganz ok Es geht Alles halbwegs in Ordnung Halbwegs ok Generally, "halbwegs" is a ...
Marc Vaisband's user avatar
1 vote

What's an indifferent way to answer "Wie geht's?"

Suggestions: "It's not so bad": "Ganz ok, aber ...", "Relativ gut, aber..." "Nothing much really": "Bei mir ist zurzeit nicht viel los." "I'm feeling so-so": "Mir geht's so lala."
Jonathan Schilhan's user avatar
1 vote

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

Living on the dutch coast, I always speak dutch to the many Germans that visit. Just trying to be polite. It is very seldom they respond in dutch. None of them seems to be interested in understanding ...
Hans_in_Zeeland's user avatar
1 vote

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

Ultimately, I think whether or not native speakers accept our bids to speak German with us boils down to our pronunciation, fluency, confidence, and nonverbal cues. How to proceed--and put it into ...
laur34's user avatar
  • 309
1 vote

Speaking German abroad and feeling condescended to when people speak English back to me

A non-native speaker tends to have a certain stage fright. Native speakers can smell it, like blood in the water. This can be an issue when speaking any language. Relatedly, a German muttering under ...
Bob's user avatar
  • 19

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