Romania has won the top spot as the least challenging country linguistically for foreigners, according to the global language learning marketplace Preply.
If there are 10 words for a bread roll in the UK, Romania only has three in the official languages spoken- Romanian, Hungarian and German.
It also has the fewest accents or dialects of any European country- Wallachia, Moldavia, and Banat.
Even though Romania earns a mid-level rank for its EPI score, the English Proficiency Index, a private lesson in Romanian costs an average of £12.96, which makes it the third cheapest.
Ireland came second in the rankings and Portugal and Serbia took the third spot.
Gaelic is Ireland’s only other spoken language apart from English and it recognizes four regional dialects (Irish English, Ulster, Dublin, and South-West Ireland).
Although the country claims the highest EPI score rank (joint with UK), if someone aims to learn Gaelic, they’ll pay an average of £20.09 for a lesson.
Portugal ranks third overall mainly because the only spoken language is Portuguese—although visitors and new residents will find there are ten different regional variations of Portuguese. As for its EPI score, Portugal ranks as the seventh most proficient country in Europe, with a language lesson costing £18.31.
In join third is Serbia, thanks to cheaper language lessons, on average £15.68 and its two official languages – Serbian (primary) and Albanian.
Eight accents and dialects are recognized, including Shtokavian, Eastern Herzegovian and Šumadija–Vojvodina.
At the other end is the Czech Republic which is the most challenging country linguistically. Private language lessons can cost up to an average of £63 and although the country only registers one spoken language (Czech), the Czech Republic has 26 spoken dialects and accents in total.
France and Switzerland are also ‘linguistically challenging.’ In France, language lessons cost an average of £22.49 and it has 40 regional dialects and accents. Switzerland has four different official languages, German, French, Italian and Romansch, but ranks towards the bottom of the leaderboard for its English proficiency score.
Th site says that when you visit or moving to a new country, it helps to be knowledgeable of the languages and dialects there.
A good place to start is with regionally differing terminology for commonly used words. In the UK, there are ten different words used to describe a ‘bread roll’ depending on where you are. In London you’ll hear someone ask for a “bread roll”, in Newcastle you’ll likely hear “teacake”, whereas Glaswegians call it a “rowie” and in the Midlands you may hear locals requesting a “cob”.
The site said it looked at the official languages spoken in each country, the number of recognized regional accents, the country’s English proficiency score and the average hourly cost of an online language lesson in the country’s primary language.