So you’ve decided to take the leap and learn the Tagalog language. Perhaps you're traveling to the Philippines soon. Maybe you have a loved one who speaks Tagalog, or maybe you’ve fallen in love with Filipino culture.
Whatever the reason, you’re excited! You can’t wait to start speaking like a Filipino. You’ve heard of Babbel’s language courses, and think to yourself, “Babbel would be a great way to start learning Tagalog”. But there’s one problem:
Babbel doesn’t offer a Tagalog course.
Why is there no Tagalog course on Babbel?
I’m not exactly sure why Babbel isn’t offering any Tagalog lessons. I suspect that perhaps they’ve shied away from Tagalog because it’s simply not as popular as other foreign languages. Maybe Tagalog is on Babbel’s to do list, but they just haven't gotten around to it.
Another reason could be that Tagalog isn’t as closely related to English as popular foreign languages like French or Spanish. Babbel does offer courses on languages as diverse as Turkish, Russian, and Indonesian so maybe that’s not the case?
Alternatives to Babbel Tagalog
Don’t let the lack of a Babbel Tagalog course stop you in your tracks. There’s more than one way to learn Tagalog. Here’s a few helpful alternatives that will help get you up and running with the language.
Filipinopod101 is a massive Tagalog learning app with hundreds of podcast style lessons across five difficult levels (ranging from beginner to advanced). Each lesson uses a dialogue between two Tagalog speakers to teach you grammar, vocabulary, and share the occasional cultural insight. There are also a ton of free bonus materials on the app including downloadable ebooks, audio phrasebooks, pronunciation trainers, video lessons, grammar cheat sheets, and a whole lot more.
Pimsleur is an audio course designed to get you thinking and speaking in a foreign language. Their Tagalog course does just that. Each thirty minute lesson teaches you a series of phrases and breaks them down word by word and syllable by syllable, as you develop a natural sounding filipino accent. After that the lessons move on to Pimsleur’s trademark prompt-recall-response technique, where you are prompted to ask and answer an unpredictable series of questions completely in Tagalog.
Learn Tagalog with Master Ling
Master Ling’s Tagalog app is a gamified course for learning conversational vocabulary. It’s structure has some similarities to Babbel, but I’ve found Master Ling to be more interactive and engaging. Some of my favorite features include practicing with a Tagalog chatbot, reviewing with mini games, and taking the progress exams.
One thing Babbel courses can’t do is get you face to face with a native speaker. Italki is an online marketplace where language learners can book paid video lessons with language teachers and tutors from around the world. There are currently over 70 Tagalog teachers on Italki.
*With a purchase of $20 or more. After you complete your first lesson 10 free Italki credits will be added to your account.