LAAX (Swiss Alps)
Our roving reporter spent a few cool days surrounded by the majestic Swiss Alps. Whether you like skiing, snowboarding, cross-country skiing or trekking, there really is something for everyone here. A fantastic blend of cutting-edge architecture mixed with traditional Swiss charm.
However, our mission was to find out if Switzerland is an English-friendly country. There are many languages and dialects spoken in Switzerland including French, German, Romansh, Italian and Portuguese but English is rarely mentioned in this list.
We needed to test the English of the locals by going into shops, bars, cafes, ski-hire places and talking to cable car attendants, waiters, ski-instructors and such like. Armed with a German phrasebook just in case the plan failed, we set to work.
After a few days of idle chatting to the locals and tourists alike, it soon became clear that virtually everyone speaks English. Couple this with a polite and friendly manner and you have a place bursting with atmosphere.
BOND REFERENCE: For the James Bond fans, the scenery rivals that of ‘On Her Majesty’s Secret Service’, which was shot in the Swiss Alps, just a few kilometers away from Laax.
Some local words: piz (peak), crap (mountain). We loved how they say ‘cheers’ and ‘hello’.
British Native Speaker rating: HIGH LEVEL OF ENGLISH
Summary: An easy place to speak English.