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To want to move to Copenhagen...but be worried about learning the language

(46 Posts)
Alisvolatpropiis Tue 11-Dec-12 20:01:20

It's been consistently voted the happiest place to live in the world (or in the top 10).

It's beautiful,I've visited it a couple of years ago and loved everything about it.

Childcare (not an immediate concern granted) is wonderful,as is healthcare.

I don't have a permenant job at the moment and DP though not keen to relocate to another part of the UK would move to mainland Europe. We don't have children yet so this would be the best time to go I suppose?

The thing is...I am terrified I won't be able to learn to speak Danish. Or learn to speak it well. Obviously I would want to work, have friends,be part of society. Are there any MNetters who are Danish/can speak Danish who could give me advice regarding the language?

espanol Tue 11-Dec-12 20:07:11

If you're serious you need to get working on it pronto! The pronunciation is difficult. Swedish speaking friend married a Dane about a decade ago. Can read Danish fine as v similar to Swedish but still finds pronunciation/understanding quite difficult as they seem to swallow a lot of their endings etc. she did an intensive Danish course focussing on speaking which did help a lot but she still finds it a bit tricky. Doesn't live there though so may have been easier if she was fully immersed. However she speaks it at home with her DH and his parents who live nearby and her kids are growing up bilingual so she is pretty exposed yet still finds it hard.

Alameda Tue 11-Dec-12 20:09:54

that's strange, was talking to someone earlier who is obsessed with moving to Finland and has similar concerns

why wouldn't you be able to learn Danish? Can see that it might be slow and difficult while you are in another country but once there you would learn quickly and could go to Danish school?

DowagersHump Tue 11-Dec-12 20:12:27

One of my friends moved out there for a job about 5 years ago. Fell in love, had a baby, split up with the mother, now has a girlfriend. Never coming back. As far as I can tell, his entire life is now conducted in Danish

Scholes34 Tue 11-Dec-12 20:12:38

Just buy the box set of The Killing.

Ooh, lovely! Stop worrying, start learning!

Caerlaverock Tue 11-Dec-12 20:17:05

Och, it's just English in a silly accent

Hoope thees helpens

AnnoyedAtWork Tue 11-Dec-12 20:18:07

I think Danish is a lot easier than say Swedish or Norwegian just cos Danish is SO similar to Dutch and German (and I do speak both of those admittedly so may be biased)

Hey maybe I'll move to Copenhagen too! Sounds awesome esp re childcare etc. hate my city job and can't afford to have a baby hmm

Good luck !!

AfterEightMintyy Tue 11-Dec-12 20:18:46

Watch out! them there Danes might not want a load of forriners moving in willy-nilly.

Alisvolatpropiis Tue 11-Dec-12 20:18:53

Are there any good self teaching things about,like those Rosetta Stone things? Ideally I would want to go being able to at least being able to read/speak it a bit. When I visited without fail every Danish person I spoke to spoke amazing English and I'm worried that knowing that could make me lazy in learning once actually there.

Alisvolatpropiis Tue 11-Dec-12 20:21:24

Madame is it similar to German?! I can speak that a bit,well I could. Now I can just all the words correctly without necessarily knowing exactly what it is I'm saying blush.

Cozy9 Tue 11-Dec-12 20:22:47

What do you have to offer the people of Denmark?

ilovesooty Netherlands Tue 11-Dec-12 20:24:31
XiCi Tue 11-Dec-12 20:24:55

Don't want to be the voice of pessimisn but what job do you and your partner expect to get without speaking the language. Cost of living is high so you would need a decent wage to have a good standard of life out there. Have you thought about the practicalities at all?

ifancyashandy Tue 11-Dec-12 20:26:14

Everyone BUT everyone speaks English. I lived there for a year. Appreciate it's not the point but it's good to know you'll find communication very easy from the start.

roseum Tue 11-Dec-12 20:26:35

According to my (Danish) husband the Danish government provides lots of (mostly free) language lessons, as its a big deal there that immigrants learn to speak the language. He thinks the lessons are tied to getting their equivalent of a NI number, which should be relatively easy if you are an EU citizen. This site might be helpful.

Perhaps find out what the Danish government offers for new immigrants. In Sweden, where we live, there are free language classes on offer. I took advantage of them though I do believe that classes are not enough on their own. After 2 years being at home with small children, I now have enough language skills to be able to work in Swedish with swedish people. My written Swedish will take some time to really be at a decent level, but I'm still working on that!

I have lived and worked in different European countries and have immersed myself in local life and language. Though difficult at first, people do appreciate it when you make the effort and will respond to your efforts to speak. I really think that this is key IMO to feeling at home and not like an outsider.

I believe that Copenhagen is quite international though, so you might find job opportunties in English, depending on your field. From what I've heard their maternity benefit and leave is not as generous as in other Scandinavian countries, but that could just be gossip. You'd have to check it out to see. In Sweden it is an organisation called forsakringskassan which arranges/administers these things. Try googling the Danish equivalent and see what they have to say. They will almost certainly have web pages in English.

Good luck!

Revengeofkarma Tue 11-Dec-12 20:27:02

Try Memrise for language learning. It is vocab, not grammar but it is a start. We started using it for DDs French and it has expanded her knowledge leaps and bounds. It also often includes phrases. (And it is free)

AnnoyedAtWork Tue 11-Dec-12 20:29:19

Yes it is very similar to German. If you understand that you can get the gist of what people are saying. However I would say the best way to learn is total immersion ie learn it when u get there! Agree with other posters' concerns about getting a job though. If you have a plan for that side of things, I say go for it

Weissdorn Tue 11-Dec-12 20:30:43

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Alisvolatpropiis Tue 11-Dec-12 20:32:03

Cozy anything they wanted! I'm legally trained so could provide consultation on UK law,should they want that.

FellatioNelson Tue 11-Dec-12 20:32:22

What do you have to offer the people of Denmark?

Snort. grin I don't know why, but that has had me crying with laughter!

FellatioNelson Tue 11-Dec-12 20:34:26

I can just see Alis at her very important Denmark interview, and Cozy sitting on the other side of the desk with her half moon glasses pushed down her nose, saying 'So...what do you have to offer the people of Denmark?' and then opening the trap door to the gunk tank if she doesn't have the right answer. grin

Alisvolatpropiis Tue 11-Dec-12 20:36:31

Those sites look great ilovesooty and roseum thank you! Good to know that they're keen that immigrants learn the language and have provisions for it!

I'll have a look at Memrise thanks Revenge

I intend to have a job lined up before making any big moves. Or at least DP having one,his line of work might be easier to get into prior to moving.

HelpOneAnother Tue 11-Dec-12 20:37:19

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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