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How well is English spoken in Poland?


cjjc 29 | 408  
1 Aug 2008 /  #1
Maybe a stupid question...but for instance the French know the English language quite well but generaly don't like to speak it especialy to an English person!

I was wondering what it's like in Poland?

Apologies if this topic is a dupe.

:)
SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
1 Aug 2008 /  #2
I was wondering what it's like in Poland?

Well when I came here first, very few people in Krakow spoke English.
Polish people used to learn Russian, German and French but mainly Russian.
Now English is learned by Polish people starting at the age of 7, I think.
And all the menus and most of the people speak English, depending on age, the older they are, the less likely to speak English.
ukpolska  
1 Aug 2008 /  #3
I used to live in students town in Lublin and at the start of the term there were many students wondering around lost. And I was stopped many times and asked for directions, and I immediately replied that my Polish was very bad (as it was then) and straight away they switched to English.

But I think you will you will have not much problem in the tourist cities.
SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
1 Aug 2008 /  #4
ukpolska

Are you sure you weren't in Dublin?
The Catholic University in Lublin was one of the only cities that taught Gaelic (Irish and Welsh) which just adds to my theory that Lublin was supposed to be like a second Dublin.
ukpolska  
1 Aug 2008 /  #5
The Catholic University in Lublin was one of the only cities that thought Gaelic (Irish and Welsh) which just adds to my theory that Lublin was supposed to be like a second Dublin.

Ah you threw me for a sec lol thought = taught hehe
Yeah and in old town in one pub they shipped in Guinness, which was a treat and the best I have tasted in Poland, so there maybe some similarities ;)
SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
1 Aug 2008 /  #6
Ah you threw me for a sec lol thought = taught hehe

The Edit button is great, I wish I had one in real life.

in old town in one pub they shipped in Guinness

That is it then, Lublin = Dublin, mind you Dublin probably = Lublin.
ukpolska  
1 Aug 2008 /  #7
The Edit button is great, I wish I had one in real life.

Oh we wish lol
If you are ever down here again send us a pm and I will show you round the bars :)

And the great thing is the more beers you drink the easier it is to understand Polish...'funny that' :)
So to the poster there is tip number one, stay in the bars and you will have no problems ;)
SeanBM 35 | 5,808  
1 Aug 2008 /  #8
If you are ever down here again send us a pm and I will show you round the bars :)

Coolabula, thanks for the offer.
I will not be going that direction for a while but it is always nice when people offer to show me bars.
HelenaWojtczak 28 | 177  
8 Aug 2008 /  #9
This utter nonsense is from the Eblag canal website:

In case of additional orders Ż.O.E. organizes delivery and return of passangers for extra fee by minibuses or own touristic buses.

Directly after swimming up the ship to Elbląg about hour 19 exists the possibility of return our bus to Małdyty, Miłomłyn or to Ostróda. The cost of ride for one person amount: 10 zł to Małdyty, 15 zł to Miłomłyn or to Ostróda. Return lasts about 1 hour by bus and it was should order during reservation of tickets on cruise the ship.

Passengers who swim by the ship from Elbląg to Małdyty (swimming up about 2:30 p.m.) have the possibility of the return to Elbląg by the direct train. Departure of train to Elbląg from the station of PKP in Małdyty about 15:10 and 15:46 p.m. The arrival to Elbląg suitably about 16:00 and 16:30 p.m.

Passengers swimming by the ship from Elbląg to Miłomłyn who want return to Elbląg (after earlier obtainment of the information on the phone number 089/646 38 71 - the courses are not organized every day) have the possibility of the return to Elbląg by the put bus. The return lasts 50 minutes. The cost of the return carries out 15 zloty for the person and should be paid at the captain the ship during the cruise.

zegluga.com.pl/en/page/17
ukpolska  
9 Aug 2008 /  #10
He he, you will get used to that here, as a proofreader I am always searching out these sites and offering to change them. However, many of them are convinced that you are telling them lies, and say that we had it translated by a professional translator. What can you do I ask you?

I also work for a few translation companies here in Poland, and in almost every translation, even sworn translators you will find mistakes.
HelenaWojtczak 28 | 177  
9 Aug 2008 /  #11
"Passengers swimming by the ship"

heheheheh
ukpolska  
9 Aug 2008 /  #12
wow you are up early Helena, seagulls pecking on the roof this morning hehe ;)
Cleo14 1 | 29  
11 Aug 2008 /  #13
Passengers who swim by the ship

:D
Magdalena 3 | 1,837  
11 Aug 2008 /  #14
This utter nonsense is from the Eblag canal website:

To be fair, it's not "utter nonsense", I am sure you understand what they are trying to say. Of course it's very bad English, and someone should be flogged for taking money for the translation, but believe me - I have seen much worse. ;-)
HelenaWojtczak 28 | 177  
11 Aug 2008 /  #15
Come on then Mags, let's see it. I love garbled English - so funny!
Magdalena 3 | 1,837  
11 Aug 2008 /  #16
I haven't kept copies, unfortunately...
chromium - | 15  
12 Oct 2008 /  #17
I've lived in Debica, Rzeszow, Wroclaw, Gdynia, Sopot, and Gdansk. Not in one city have I had a problem with communicating in English with the majority of people. Mainly when I have a problem it is at a store where a person over 50 or so is working. But many times, a person next me will step in and translate for me. Outside the main cities in the villages, you may have problems, though. I've ridden my bike through 100s of villages and most of the people in the convenience stores don't speak much English.
sobieski 107 | 2,128  
12 Oct 2008 /  #18
I do not think it is a legal obligation here in Poland to speak English.
Local stores serve local people in their local = Polish language.
Buying a phrasebook "Polish for tourists" or something like this could help.
(By the way I am not Polish but Belgian and I speak every day Polish at all times, I consider it to be a matter of everyday respect)
Seanus 15 | 19,706  
12 Oct 2008 /  #19
Obviously, it depends where u go. In the countryside areas, u r more likely to run into grunts than rythmical English. As I've said elsewhere, the Poles don't speak English as well as the Benelux or Scandinavian countries, nothing like it.

However, there are those who have a talent or have made it their primary objective to master English. Some of the more detailed discussions I've had really impressed me. Articulation was not a problem in the slightest.

Many Poles now know that practice makes perfect and relish the opportunity to try some English.
OP cjjc 29 | 408  
12 Oct 2008 /  #20
I do not think it is a legal obligation here in Poland to speak English.
Local stores serve local people in their local = Polish language.
Buying a phrasebook "Polish for tourists" or something like this could help.
(By the way I am not Polish but Belgian and I speak every day Polish at all times, I consider it to be a matter of everyday respect)

I respect that however Polish is an incredibly difficult language and takes hours of study to even begin to work out which way the order of words go in a sentance!

I'm not making excuses, I'm going to Poland in November and will obviously have to speak it, read it and hear it. I found this piece of text on a website a whi;le ago and it was this that inspired the thread:

"Foreign visitors should be aware that almost all written and spoken information will usually be in Polish only. Tickets for buses and trains, public signs and information posters generally have no English on them. Even information displayed at museums, churches, etc. will usually only be in Polish, while important messages broadcast through loudspeakers at a railway station will not be followed by a translation."

However now I know that I will be at least able to get some help from most people :) of course firstly I will try out my Polish!

:D
Misiek  
21 Oct 2008 /  #21
"Foreign visitors should be aware that almost all written and spoken information will usually be in Polish only. Tickets for buses and trains, public signs and information posters generally have no English on them. Even information displayed at museums, churches, etc. will usually only be in Polish, while important messages broadcast through loudspeakers at a railway station will not be followed by a translation."

Eeeeh ... In every tourist city the signs are in English as well...
gtd 3 | 639  
21 Oct 2008 /  #22
What???

Most stuff in Warsaw is only in Polish. With the exception of famous tourist sites etc.

Sometimes they announce trains in English and Russian as well but not always plus the speakers are so bad you can't make out what they are saying normally.

And in shops there are a LOT of people who don't speak English. I have even noticed an increase in young people who don't. But you can manage with bad Polish and pointing.

You can normally find someone in the street that does if you try hard enough..might take you a few people though.

I would not assume it will be no problem to sort trains etc unless you know some Polish. Ironically even the "international" windows at train stations etc rarely if ever speak English. The airports are much better.
Wroclaw 44 | 5,386  
21 Oct 2008 /  #23
Eeeeh ... In every tourist city the signs are in English as well...

You obviously haven't been to Wroclaw. Some info is in English.
gtd 3 | 639  
21 Oct 2008 /  #24
Some...most is not...as I said.

Are you going to tell me that Bus and Train lists...info in shops...banks, business offices and government offices have English signs commonly? If you do I will all you a liar outright.
miranda  
21 Oct 2008 /  #25
If you do I will all you a liar outright.

relax:)
Wroclaw 44 | 5,386  
21 Oct 2008 /  #26
If you do I will all you a liar outright.

Who is this comment directed at ?
gtd 3 | 639  
21 Oct 2008 /  #27
You....and I see I misunderstood so my apologies :)

I didn't mean it in some screaming violent way Miranda ;)

Just that it is incorrect that most things are available in English....some...and not consistently are. Someone coming here expecting more is going to be disappointed and it goes back to my point of giving valid information to people. And people here often don't try to work with you and understand when you have language problems. Just today a girl was asking me for a ticket office and for the life of me I could not figure out how to say "underground" in Polish when giving her directions. I had all the rest of it fine and was making 'down' gestures with my hand and she was standing there like I had a willy growing out of my forehead. I have no idea how she couldn't get it out of context as well.

Communication is not always as simple as people think...lots if misinformation out there.

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