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Thanks to cultural references, culinary specialties and the abundance of reggaeton on the airwaves, you probably already know a little Spanish. Have you ever thought about taking a siesta before going out to party and drink mojitos in a tapas bar? I would bet so! But does studying Spanish allow you to make good use of your time and invest your money in the best possible way

1. 400 million native speakers in 20 countries

Spanish, the official or second major language of 20 countries spread across Europe, Africa, Central America, South America and North America, has more than 400 million native speakers. It’s true, apart from Spain and Latin America, Spanish is one of the official languages ​​of Equatorial Guinea and Western Sahara, but also an important minority language in Gibraltar, Belize, Andorra and the United States. In fact, in the United States, Spanish is very present. Although numbers vary, it is estimated to be the first or second language of around 45 million people. All of this gives Spanish the status of being one of the most widely spoken languages ​​in the world.

2. Second Largest Cohort of Native Speakers

Spanish is the second most spoken native language in the world, second only to Chinese, which has over a billion native speakers. Nonetheless, Spanish is widely spoken, making it an incredibly useful language to learn.

3. Easy to learn…

Yes, Spanish has feminine and masculine nouns, fourteen verb tenses, many irregular verbs and two articles, but it is considered a language that allows you to acquire a solid foundation very easily , while achieving your mastery goals. . He are shortcuts to learning Spanish, especially if your mother tongue is also Latin. French, Italian and Portuguese speaking students will find endless linguistic similarities between their language and Spanish. Thanks to their Latin roots, English speakers will not be outdone either: Spanish and English have thousands of related words in common (whose spelling is totally similar or very close and, above all, which have the same sense). Want some examples? Chocolate, capital, flexible, panorama, radio, visual, triple and tropical are all perfect cognates

and to pronounce Spanish is a phonetic language, which means that it is pronounced as it is written. Of course, there are differences in dialect according to regions and countries – but these do not hamper the meaning of the words. For example, Latin Americans don’t use the English “th” that Spaniards often use to pronounce the “z” or “c” in words like cerveza and gracias. In Argentina, words beginning with ‘ll’ and ‘y’ are pronounced the same as English ‘sh’ (e.g. yo is pronounced ‘sho’, llegar ‘shegar’ and lluvia ‘shuvia’), while In Chile the verb endings of the second person are pronounced “ai” and “i” like, for example, “cómo estái” for cómo estás (how are you) and “tú querí” for tú quieres (you want).

4. Ideal for literature…

When they return from a stay abroad in a Spanish-speaking country, almost all students are enamored with “Cien Años de Soledad” by Gabriel García Marquéz or Cervantes – and we fully understand why. But there are other notable Spanish-speaking writers to keep you company on a rainy day. Fill your Kindle with works by Robert Bolaño, Ildefonso Falcones, Julio Cortázar, Mario Vargas Llosa, Leonora Carrington and Carmen Martín Gaite to name a few.

The case study is also strong when it comes to Spanish. Its status as an official language of the UN, the EU, the Organization of American States and the Union of South American Nations helps create important trade and investment links between continents. In the United States, Hispanics are the largest minority group and represent a significant percentage of the country’s purchasing power for brands and businesses. Across the ocean in the UK, lack of language skills and expecting people to speak English in business interactions has been shown to cost around 3.5% of GDP to UK economy . In fact, the British Council’s Language for the Future report identifiedSpanish as one of the five most important languages ​​after Brexit .

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