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Learning the language

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Learning the language

We will be spending around 7 nights in Norway and 3 in Sweden.

Would really like to learn the native language to communicate instead of depending on people knowing English. Besides that, think it would be more fun to speak the language of the people there.

Rosetta stone was a Swedish course, but no Norwegian. Pimsleur has a Norwegian course.

So two questions:

- Anyone with experience on Pimsleur vs Rosetta have an opinion on which is a better method of learning these languages?

- Since most of the time will be spent in Norway, if Rosetta stone ends up being the easier method would my broken Swedish be sufficient in Norway?

If there is a better program outside of these two, feel free to share. Have around 6 months to learn as much as I can.


Harstad, Norway
Destination Expert
for Bergen, Norway
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1. Re: Learning the language

Learning the language is a waste of time unless you plan to live and work in Norway. Everybody speaks English.

A small dictionary can be useful when shopping for groceries. Or an electronic one on your phone if they exist.

Edited: 09 February 2014, 08:45
Oslo, Norway
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2. Re: Learning the language

Even though it is not really necessary in Norway, many people with an interest in languages think it is fun to learn some of the language in the country they visit. Here is an excellent on-line resource for learning entry-level Norwegian developed by NTNU (Norwegian University for Science and Technology): ntnu.edu/norwegiancourse/norwegian-on-the-web

For just learning some basic phrases, this site can be useful: loecsen.com/travel/0-en-67-2-51-free-lessons…

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3. Re: Learning the language

Norwegian and English are closely related, a large part of everyday words are very similar, and syntax is virtually identical. Lots of service workers in Oslo do not have Norwegian as their mother tongue (in cafes Swedish is very common, or English).

Norwegian and Danish are basically the same languages, although pronounciation is rather different. Norwegian and Swedish have similar pronounciation but different vocabulary, but these are "functionally" the same languages because we largely understand each other.

Trondheim, Norway
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for Trondheim
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4. Re: Learning the language

As with all small countries we do like it when foreigners try to speak our language. I still remember how the country swooned when Diana Ross on Norwegian national telly spoke three words in Norwegian after marrying Arne Næss Jr in 1985 (we where very easily swooned back then).

Most people who have English as their first language and have moved to Norway do complain that they have difficulties in practising their Norwegian as almost all Norwegians switch to English when talking with them. So most of those only staying in Norway for a limited number of years often just give up learning Norwegian properly.

r c
Portland, Oregon
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5. Re: Learning the language


I think its great you are willing to try and learn a foreign language. whatever you do good luck.

I try to do the same and i think the locals appreciate it more then just saying in their face...do you speak english?

i try to do at least the minimal greetings and such.

also, i would love to be there when you try with your texan accent.

6. Re: Learning the language

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