English is adopted as a common language between speakers whose native languages are different in both business and tourism, which is why many tourist destinations – including the Madrid area have started to mount English translations on signs, maps and menus in museums and restaurants.
Taxi drivers in the Spanish capital are posting a sticker reading 'This taxi speaks English.' Now over 500 taxi drivers in the city have signed up to a free online English course run by the local authorities to improve the quality of the tourist experience in the region and make tourists feel comfortable and at home right away.
More and more foreigners are coming to Madrid for business and leisure,” said one driver, online student Óscar López. “They account for practically half my fares.” We give tourists their first impression of the city.
The online course was designed by Universia, which took inspiration from the volunteer’s English course at the Rio Olympics last year. The director of tourism for the region of Madrid, Carlos Chaguaceda, believes that language is essential to making the visitor feel at home. Set up with the support of three major taxi associations, the initiative is just the first of many the regional government will be investing in, he says.