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Languages of the Netherlands
The official language of the Netherlands or the Netherlands is Dutch or Dutch. However, in Spanish, it is also known as Dutch, although officially this word refers to a dialect of Dutch.
This language is of Germanic origin and uses the Latin alphabet. It is the mother tongue of around 23 million people, as it is also used in former colonies and islands that still belong to the Netherlands. It is also the second language of five million people.
The territories in which Dutch is spoken, in addition to the European zone of the Netherlands, are as follows:
- Aruba, Bonaire, Curaçao and Sint Marteen (Dutch island territory)
- Flanders and Brussels (Belgium)
Dutch has several dialects. In general, the set of dialects from the north is known as Dutch and those from the south as Flemish, although there are many varieties. On the other hand, in Friesland, we find a co-official language: Friesian. Limburgish is also used in some areas.
Here are some basic words translated into Dutch:
Goodbye: Tot ziens
Thanks: Dank je
You’re welcome: Graag gedaan
In addition to Dutch, there are other languages that a significant part of the population knows. This is advantageous for tourists visiting the country or immigrants who decide to move here.
In the following table we can see the percentage of the Dutch population that speaks these languages:
In relation to this, 94% of the total population is capable of speaking at least one foreign language, while 77% know two. Therefore, the Dutch have a great knowledge of languages.
If you are thinking of going to live in the Netherlands and you don’t know if you can work without knowing the language of the country, you should know that for some jobs it is not needed, since, a large part of the population can speak English. However, it is advisable to learn Dutch, as it will open more doors for you and allow you to live more comfortably in the country.
On the other hand, if you do not know Dutch or English, it is quite difficult to find a job, so you must have an acceptable level of at least one of the two languages. If you want to study either of these two languages there, you will find several language schools. You also have the option to learn them online.