"Language etiquette in Amsterdam/Netherlands" Language Tip by robk998

Language, Amsterdam: 25 reviews and 8 photos

People from the English speaking countries--and elsewhere--whose Dutch is serviceable enough to use will frequently find that people in Amsterdam and elsewhere will begin speaking English to you as soon as they detect that you know English. If this happens, it is a good idea to continue the conversation in English. If you switch back to Dutch, many people will take it that you do not believe their English is up to snuff, and they may get a little huffy. Dutch people love to practice their English on English speakers! If you insist on using your Dutch, your best bet is to go into one of the many establishments run by immigrants. Many immigrants to the Netherlands are more comfortable in Dutch than in English--and some of them know only their mother tongue and Dutch--, so they will appreciate your addressing them in a language they can get through.

I strongly recommend that one should not, ever, under any circumstances, address any Dutch person in German. Es ist empfohlen, unter keinen Umstaenden einen Niederlaender auf Deutsch anzusprechen. Niemals.

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  • Written Oct 25, 2006
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