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Has anyone used DuoLingo to learn Spanish?

2020 Camino Guides

Julia Mumford

Adventure Geek
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (2016, 2017, 2018, 2019)
Camino Ingles (2018)
I head out for part two of my Camino in 5 weeks. My first walk in June was St Jean to Estella, and part two will be Estella to Burgos (maybe beyond).

Anyway, I did not know any Spanish on my previous adventure, so this time round I am learning the basics using an app called DuoLingo. I am on day 46 so far and I am now getting a real feel for the language and can't wait to read menus etc when I am in Spain.

I was just curious to see if anyone else went down this route?
 

Sheena

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
C de F (2015), P.Coastal (2016), CamIngles (2017), Senda Littoral (2018), CP Lisbon - Coimbra (2019)
I head out for part two of my Camino in 5 weeks. My first walk in June was St Jean to Estella, and part two will be Estella to Burgos (maybe beyond).

Anyway, I did not know any Spanish on my previous adventure, so this time round I am learning the basics using an app called DuoLingo. I am on day 46 so far and I am now getting a real feel for the language and can't wait to read menus etc when I am in Spain.

I was just curious to see if anyone else went down this route?
Hi Julia.
Yes I've used Duolngo to learn Portuguese and most lately to brush up my Spanish. I want to be really comfortable with it, not like this year when we walked the Portuguese Camino.
By the time we crossed the border into Spain, my Portuguese was so good, I couldn't remember any Spanish!
I'm also going to try and use Duolingo to learn some Irish. We have lived in the West of Ireland since 2008, so it's about time I gave it a go.
I'd definitely recommend Duolingo!
Plus Google Translate for when all else fails!
Buen Camino!
Viaje seguro!
Sheena

An update on my Spanish -
I completed the Duolingo course but still go back to it nearly daily for refreshers.
It says I'm 21% fluent whatever that means!

I've also been using the Memorise app and have just completed their highest, level 7.
I'm now giving the other courses on their app a go, but the sound quality on some of them isn't so good.

I feel much more confident now and hope my accent will improve a bit once I'm over there using the language in a more normal setting.

You can obviously get by without any language skills on the Camino, but for me it's a much more enriching experience to be able to converse with local people in their own language. And more polite too.
 
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oldhat

New Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances (May-June 2016)
I'm using it now, but mostly as a refresher. It's essentially a flashcard system, but it's fine.

The main program I used to start on Spanish was Fluenz, which I liked a lot, although it's not free--around $350. I definitely felt like I got my money's worth, though. The program contains 150 lessons that take around an hour each, plus access to numerous electronic flashcards on their website. It took me about 8-9 months to get through the entire program, but I felt like it provided a good foundation.

Unfortunately, after finishing Fluenz I slacked off for a couple of months, which is why I've started with Duolingo. I don't know if it's moving me forward much (the beginning vocab on all interactive language software seems remarkably similar), but at least it's keeping me from going backward.
 

Houlet

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances 2014
Via de la Plata 2015
Camino Sanabres 2015
Camino Norde 2017
I've competed Duolingo Spanish but maybe it's just me. It gave me a 2500 word vocabulary but I still need to think in English and translate. I'm still working on ot though.
 
W

whariwharangi

Guest
Sure its great for learning the basics but Duo lingo isn't going to help with menus.
 

SYates

Camino Fossil AD 1999, now living in Santiago de C
Camino(s) past & future
First: Camino Francés 1999
...
Last: Santiago - Muxia 2019

Now: http://egeria.house/
I do already speak Spanish, but I do use duolingo to learn other languages. It is free and great fun and gets the basics done, no more, no less. Buen Camino, SY
 
Camino(s) past & future
Camino Frances Leon-Santiago (March 2015)
Camino Portugues Porto-Finisterre (October 2016)
I'm using it now for Portuguese - I've been fluent in Spanish for years, but what Portuguese I know I picked up from Brazilians living in Japan back in the 90s so it's very rusty. As @oldhat said, it's essentially a flashcard system. Unfortunately it won't be useful in deciphering menus; Duolingo doesn't have a very broad vocabulary.
 

kaylfrazer

Member
Camino(s) past & future
Roncesvalle-SDC (2001), SJPP-SDC(2003), Le Puy - SJPP (2011)
I used Coffee Break French before walking from Le Puy and found it very helpful.. I just used the free podcasts downloaded to my iPod while I was out on my training walks. There is also a Spanish version that I haven't tried here http://radiolingua.com/cbs-step-1/ if you are interested.
 

J Willhaus

Veteran Member
Camino(s) past & future
2016 CF;
Hospitalera, Zamora 2017, Hospitalera Grañón 2018, Hospitalera Estella 2019
I used Duolingo last year before our Camino. Very helpful! I have also listened to some of the Spanish Coffee breaks, but I did find it as helpful.
 

mla1

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
CF (2000); Ch St. Giles (2013); Le Puy to SJPP (May/June 2015); vdlp 2016
I used Coffee Break French before walking from Le Puy and found it very helpful.. I just used the free podcasts downloaded to my iPod while I was out on my training walks. There is also a Spanish version that I haven't tried here http://radiolingua.com/cbs-step-1/ if you are interested.
I also think the Coffee Break podcasts are excellent for learning/brushing up on Spanish. I used them while I walked my dog - she learned a lot too! The same company does other languages as well.
 

Kitsambler

Jakobsweg Junkie
Camino(s) past & future
Le Puy 2010-11, Prague 2012, Nuremberg 2013, Einsiedeln 2015, Geneva 2017-19
For menus, the Marling Menu-Master is your best bet, and it's available in French, German, and Italian as well. Quite small and thin, but absolutely invaluable!
 

linkster

Nunca dejes de creer!
Camino(s) past & future
CF (17) Sarria - Portomarín
CF (17) SJPdP - SdC
CF (18) SJPdP - Fisterra
CP (19) Porto - Muxia
For menus, the Marling Menu-Master is your best bet, and it's available in French, German, and Italian as well. Quite small and thin, but absolutely invaluable!
I have been using Rosetta Stone. I have also downloaded all of the coffe break Spanish and listen to them while I walk. They are entertaining and make the walk go bye quickly.
 

SeaHorse

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances 2015 (SJPDP-Finisterre), planning Norte
Menus on the Camino? Nothing to worry about: all you need is 2 words "menu de peregrino", if you want to be polite, say "menu de peregrino, por favor!", chatty - "Buenas tardes, hay menu de peregrino, por favor?"
Because all the perfect local specailities have perfect local names, pulpo you will be calling "pulpo" etc.....
 

Nanc

Active Member
Camino(s) past & future
Frances (Sept 2016)
SDC/ Finesterre/ Muxia (2016)
I used Duolingo and liked that it required listening, correcting my cerbal repetitions , reading, translating in BOTH directions
I regret not keeping up with it as things got busier at work and ometimes I was impatient to be given classic travelers questions.
But I did find a free online source for phrases that you could read and listen too
 
A

AJ

Guest
Is the Spanish course the Spanish of Spain or of South America?
 

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