India is one of the most favored tourist destinations in the world. This colorful country with its diverse culture, rich biodiversity and mouth-watering food is a hot to-do on the lists of most travelers. For a western traveler, a visit to India can seem intimidating, with its colorful people and culture and most of all, its tongue twister-like languages. First of all, what every traveler should know is that they can get along fine with English in all major Indian cities.
The language that will be most useful to a traveler to India is undoubtedly Hindi. Though people in each state of India speak a different language, Hindi is the national language and the connecting linguistic thread that is understood and spoken by people in every nook and corner of this vast country. Hindi is a completely alien language to someone from the western world, with its own script and phonetic sounds that bear no resemblance to western languages.
All that a traveler requires is very basic knowledge of the Hindi language that they will most need to use in everyday practical situations. A traveler needs to know the basic Hindi phrases that will help them navigate through a new place, find and travel to places of tourist interest, find restaurants to dine in, hotels and boarding houses to stay in. They will also need to understand numbers, time and date related information, to understand the price of stuff they might be interested in buying and to understand local train and bus listings as well.
The best solution for people looking to gain a basic understanding of Hindi before traveling to India would be to go for online or CD based basic Hindi courses that are available for travelers. There are many language programs out there that offer fine-tuned language solutions for travelers. For example, the Berlitz Hindi Travel Pack is a versatile product aimed at travelers to India. The travel pack consists of an audio CD that covers various basic sentences and phrases that one is most likely to use in real-life situations such as eating at restaurants, looking for accommodation, sight-seeing, shopping, making friends and so on. The CD format ensures that the traveler has access to this information anytime, anywhere during his/her journey. Since it is in an audio format, the learner can listen to the pronunciation of each word and phrase as many times as they want until they feel that they have completely grasped the sounds used to utter it.
Along with the CD, a phrase book also forms a part of the Berlitz Hindi Travel Pack. This book contains more than 1000 oft-used phrases and words, with pronunciation guides, a dictionary for reference and a special section on phrases that would be apt to use during emergency situations that a traveler might unfortunately encounter. The phrase book will be a handy tool to any traveler, which can be perused through leisurely or readily referred to when required. This is just one of the Hindi learning packages that are targeted at travelers. There are many books, CDs and online learning programs that aim to get a traveler to India familiarized with the local tongue.