German has a reputation for being a difficult language for English speakers to learn. This may be because of the complex grammar rules with their numerous exceptions, the pronunciation, or just the length of the words themselves. In any case, practicing with a native speaker is one of the best ways to quickly become fluent in German.
When learning German, most people begin by studying Hochdeutsch or ‘High German.’ This is the standard official German used in government, and schools all across Germany. However, a trip across various German-speaking regions such as Bavaria, Switzerland, and Austria will quickly demonstrate how different spoken German can be. If you want to learn German the way people actually speak, as well as learn slang terms and regional dialects, the best way to do it is by practicing with native German speakers from many different places.
Thanks to the internet, finding a German language partner is easier than ever. You can find a German conversation partner on Skype, but of course there’s no way to search specifically for people who are trying to learn your language as well, and who are looking for an exchange partner. There are various language exchange sites as well, however, most of these simply show you other users’ profiles but they might not be active at the moment. You have to set up a time to chat, then call each other using a separate program.
There are thousands of German speakers on Tandem right now who are ready and willing to have a conversation with you, and help you practice speaking German like a native. Using Tandem is like immersing yourself in your new language without the expense of traveling abroad, or the commitment of going to a class. Plus, you can meet so many new people who are interested in the same things you are. On Tandem you can:
Whether you’d like to learn to order a beer like a Bavarian, talk about all the best places to ski in Switzerland, and or just talk about life in general in Berlin, you can find someone on Tandem to talk to at the touch of a button. It’s an all-in-one language community with messaging, chat, video, even games built in. It’s so easy. And best of all, it’s free.