¨Argentina’s First Queen,” and “A Throne for Princess Máxima,” newspaper headlines enthused above profiles of the couple and tributes to the royal consort as a “queen of hearts” and a monarch of “style and glamour.
You have thought and thought about learning Spanish abroad but you are afraid that being over 30 years old, there aren’t as many options to learn Spanish in another country for you. I get it—you have been in the workforce for a while, perhaps have a family and tons of responsibilities. So you need concrete reasons why you should take time out of your busy life to go do something that seems like most people do in their early 20s. I’ll be that person! I have the reasons! And let me start by saying, there are more people 30 years of age and older who want to learn Spanish abroad than you think. So, go for it!
Below are the top reasons why you should learn Spanish abroad, age 30, 40, 50 and up.
Reason #1: The majority of students are actually 30 years of age and older.
Learning at an independent language school is perfect for solo travelers and people of all ages and backgrounds—this isn’t junior year study abroad, this is an eclectic mix of people interested in learning Spanish abroad. For example, at Expanish Spanish School, the average age (31% of students) are 25-30, but 36% of students are aged 30 years and older. Many people come to learn Spanish to strengthen their CV, to check off Argentina from their bucket-list and to simply continue enjoying life to the fullest no matter what age.
The point here is that you need not worry that classes will be filled with younger people and you will have few people to connect with. The majority of people in the classroom are single travelers. Classroom policies encourage everyone to remain open to making friends with people of all ages, of all cultures, and all types of native tongues together in one city with a common goal to learn Spanish abroad.
Reason #2: Learning a language keeps the brain active
You are never too old to learn a language. In fact, a number of recent studies suggest that learning a foreign language is great for your brain health. I am not saying it will suddenly be easier nor harder to learn Spanish abroad later in life but I am saying this exotic opportunity is proven to keep your mind sharp.
Did I mention the opportunity to make more money? While young travelers fresh out of high school or college may not yet know the impact of their experiences, travelers 30 years and over can fully comprehend just how beneficial knowing Spanish can be in terms of work. The Economist reported that Spanish as a foreign language speakers earns on average 1.5% bonus a year for speaking the secondary language. More money, more business opportunities…why not?
Reason #3: Understand the culture, history, and the people better
You know what? I’ll let you in on a secret: Host families will love older students because they are generally better at respecting house rules and are not as interested in partying and coming home late.
You know what else? With your experience in the workforce, you can hone in on developing valuable language and communication skills to give you a leg up. It doesn’t stop there. You have more life experience and will gain tremendous value from the host country, gaining a deeper insight into the culture and politics and lifestyle—things you can take back with you and carry with you in your home country with an ease that younger people sometimes seem to lose grasp of upon returning home.
Don’t let a reason like age hinder your confidence to study Spanish in a language school in a Spanish-speaking country, because I just gave you 3 hard-to-refute reasons why you should do it.