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Despite only being the official language of a handful of countries, Portuguese is actually the sixth most spoken language in the world with 220 million native speakers. It’s similar to Spanish in a lot of ways, however, it does include a few grammatical particularities which aren’t present in other Romance languages. However, by speaking with native speakers you can quickly get a handle on the language and become fluent in Portuguese.
The two countries where Portuguese is primarily spoken are Brazil and Portugal itself. There are some differences between the language spoken in both places, however, these differences are no greater than the difference between American and British English, and Portuguese speakers from both countries can easily understand one another. However, if you’d like to learn to speak like a native, it would be helpful to concentrate on just one place in particular, and practice speaking with people from that country. That way you can learn to sound more natural when you speak, and really get to know the people and culture of a specific area.
While it would be great to travel to Brazil or Portugal and spend time learning to live and speak like the people there, this might not always be feasible for everyone. However, thanks to the Internet, it’s possible to connect and speak with people from all over the world in their native language. Skype can be a great tool for practicing with other language learners, however, it can be difficult to find others who share your interests, and hard to schedule times to regularly speak to one another. That’s where Tandem comes in handy.