Why Do Expatriates Learn Bahasa?
|Why are there more and more foreigners who want to learn bahasa while most Indonesians themselves are more interested in learning the English language or other world languages such as Mandarin and Japanese? There are many reasons why these foreigners want to learn bahasa. Some of them even come to Indonesia just with the sole purpose, which is to learn bahasa Indonesia! So what are the reasons for most foreigners who are willing to spare their time and effort just to learn Bahasa Indonesia?
According to IALF, Indonesian language or Bahasa Indonesia is the national language of the Republic of Indonesia. It unites the over 350 million people (2008 estimate) of Indonesia, whose native tongue may be one of the over 300 distinct languages or regional dialects. Older people may speak some Dutch and English is the foreign language of choice for business, tourism and study.
While it may be technically possible for foreigners to live in Jakarta without learning/speaking Bahasa Indonesia, it is highly recommended that you obtain a working knowledge of the Indonesian national language. An inability to communicate in Bahasa Indonesia will cut you off from the mainstream of society, and dealing with those Indonesians who don’t speak your foreign language will be very difficult. By not learning the language, you also deny yourself the rich cultural experience of fully communicating with those from another culture.
Should I Learn Bahasa?
Most of the reasons why those foreigners are willing to learn bahasa Indonesia, though few of them might say that learning Indonesian is not easy at the beginning, are because they live and stay in Indonesia, either for temporary or permanently. It has always been said that when we stay in a place, it is strongly advisable that we speak the language as well, otherwise we would be an alien who would gradually be isolated from the community.
When to Learn Bahasa?
The best time to start learning Bahasa Indonesia is before you even make your move to Indonesia. And this is only possible if you join our online Indonesian language course which is delivered through Skype. All the learning materials will be exactly the same as if you join our class or group.
|There are quite a number of expatriates staying in Indonesia, mostly for a year or even more. And they who are married sometimes also stay in Indonesia with their wife and children. Understanding Indonesian language is essential primarily because there are NOT many Indonesians who can speak English. So how can you interact with the community if you don’t know the language?
Learning Indonesian is considered so essential that almost all international schools in Indonesia, either in Bandung, Jakarta, Surabaya and other major cities teach their students how to speak Indonesian correctly, at least, they are taught how to communicate with the environment using the correct Indonesian grammar. So don’t be surprised if we happen to hear an American boy in Indonesia who can communicate quite well in Indonesian language with a local Indonesian boy in a villageJ.
After reading this post you might also be interested in reading my other post on Bahasa Indonesia Online.