Communicating in the local language

Updated 2017-07-19 09:11

As a Panamanian who was fortunate enough to learn English and have some exposure to other different cultures outside Panama I have learned to identify when a foreigner is in need of help during there stay in a different country and especially if they cannot speak the native language. 

My first experience with this was at a shop where the manager had to be brought in from Kentucky and did not speak more than three words in Spanish, I remember him having a hard time communicating with people, I ended up being his interpreter for over a year. Throughout the years I have met more people struggling with this fact and sometimes they even end up getting ripped off because an unreliable source gave them incorrect information and just took advantage of the fact they could not communicate properly. Now, this has serious effects on our economy because bad news travels fast! and if a foreigner had a bad experience with a Panamanian believe me, a lot of other Panama visitors will surely know about it.

Later in time I landed an interpreter job to translate for people abroad and eventually realized this is something that the Panama people could benefit from too, some tweeks would have to be done to the concept of "interpreting" for someone, however, the main purpose of what we do is: giving information.

Expats only have a few sources where they get their information, tourists are bound to pay high prices instead of being able to bargain and get information themselves jsut because they dont speak the language! Thats how we realized our service would make the road shorter for a lot of people so, if you are in Panama and need information services in your language.

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