After we published the article ‘Maltese Language‘ and included some Maltese words in it, we got a lot of questions from many tourists asking us why there isn’t any short term courses addressed for patrons that visit the Island for a short period of time.
We decided to do a short study, basically an online questionnaire, and asking people on the internet if they would consider studying Maltese during their vacation.
This was the questionnaire that we have prepared:
Males – 22 respondents
Females – 28 respondents
18 to 25 – 38 respondents
26 to 35 – 8 respondents
35 and over – 4 respondents
3. Country of Origin
4. Why are you in Malta?
Study – 39 respondents
Holiday – 7 respondents
Business – 1 respondent
Other Reasons – 3 respondents
5. What do you know about the Maltese Language?
- 30% – Knew that Maltese comes from a lot of languages like Arabic, English, French, Italian….
- 25% – Knew nothing about Maltese, and think that it’s too difficult.
- 20% – They knew some words in Maltese or speak Maltese
- 15% – They want to learn Maltese but there are not enough opportunities
- 10% – They don’t really like Maltese
6. Would you like to learn Maltese?
Yes – 23 respondents
No – 27 respondents
- 35% – They want to learn it, or already know it.
- 30% – They don’t want to learn maltese, especially because it’s only speak in Malta and no where else.
- 20% – They are in Malta to speak English
- 10% – They need Maltese in their jobs
- 5% – Holidays, no answers
7. Do you see Maltese Language as a tourist attraction?
Yes – 12 respondents
No – 38 respondents
8. Do you think there is enough opportunity for foreigners to learn Maltese?
Yes – 9 respondents
No – 41 respondents
According to the questionnaire, we can say that the Maltese language is not promoted enough to be considered as a tourist attraction. We published the questionnaire on the web, to the attention of foreign people, and we obtained 50 answers, mostly from students aged between 18 and 25.
Most respondents are coming from France, England, Germany, for the most and all over Europe and the world for the rest of them and are in Malta to study.
We asked the question “what do you know about the Maltese language?” the most frequent answer was that they know that it comes from a lot of languages like Arabic, English, French, and Italian. They considered it as a mix between languages and therefore that it is difficult to learn. Rare are those who know how to speak it, and when they actually know, it’s only a few words they ear everyday from Maltese people.
When we ask if they would like to learn Maltese, 54% of them say that they are not interested because it looks hard and useless to speak a language used only in one country. As they are students, they are in Malta to learn English and as Maltese people speak also English fluently, they don’t have to learn the local language. They didn’t choose Malta because of its language. Even people who stay more than one year are not necessarily interested in learning Maltese. In an other hand, we also have answers from people interested in learning Maltese, because they think that’s rare and want to get involved in the culture of the country they chose. But it’s not the main goal of people deciding to stay in Malta.
Basically, 76% of people asked don’t see the Maltese language is not a tourist attraction, so it’s clearly a sign that they’re not attracted by the originality of the local language, but by the place, and learning Maltese is a plus. By the way, 82% think that there are not a lot of opportunities for foreigners to learn Maltese. In summer, there is a lot of English Schools which attracts a lot of people but not the Matese Language.