German vs French: Which language is more useful to learn

Here's what you should consider when making your choice.

German vs French: Which language is more useful to learn

Being multilingual opens up greater opportunities in various fields. Starting with your professional life and to the point where you can improve your personal life as well, learning another language offers you a valuable advantage.

When it comes to French and German, they are both popular choices that can help you improve your knowledge, especially if you have job opportunities in one of the countries that recognize them as official languages.

Have a hard time choosing between the two? Here’s what to consider:

Where you will need it

Both French and German are official languages of many countries, which means that there are many doors waiting to open for you. French-speaking countries include:

  • Belgium;
  • Canada;
  • Switzerland;
  • Luxembourg;
  • Madagascar;
  • The Democratic Republic of the Congo;
  • Seychelles.

As you can see, if you learn French, the possibilities of moving and living go far beyond the European borders. If you already had the French experience by visiting Paris and other attractions, you might already be in love with the language, and you can take the next steps to improve your skills.

If you want to move to France to study or work abroad, and you speak the language at a native proficiency level, you can easily evolve and move to a different country where French-speaking people are the majority.

German is also a versatile language that you stumble upon in several countries. Some of them are:

  • Austria;
  • Switzerland;
  • Liechtenstein;
  • Luxembourg.

Take into consideration the main reasons for learning a new language and note that French and German are popular and will help you connect easily with people, both at work and in your social life.

What is best for your career

Business owners need to be multilingual to be able to form strong partnerships with international clients and reach a different, bigger audience. Germany is an economic powerhouse, and to be able to conduct direct business within its borders, you will need to learn more than the basics of Deutsche. Some of the biggest companies in Germany include Volkswagen, BMW, Bosch, and Siemens.

As far as the automobile and electrical industries go, Germany is a cradle of innovation and can offer a development platform for any professional. Learning German will prove to be beneficial if you want to reach the German market or open a new branch of your business there.

What culture do you admire the most?

A big part of learning a new language stems from the admiration you have for one culture or another. France is the epitome of culture, art, and a bohemian lifestyle. The French view culture as an essential part of their education and place it high on their pyramid of needs.

French is also the language of love, so not only do you require it for work or university, but also to live the greatest romance of your life. If you’re a fan of French cinema, which includes big names like Godard, Truffaut, and Rohmer, learning French will help you become an expert and understand the culture on a different level.

Germany can offer you just as many attractions when it comes to the artistic fields. Not just a place for businesses to grow, but also for creatives to express themselves, the country has much to offer. For example, Berlin is becoming the go-to place for artists all over the world, due to its distinct approach to nightlife, cultural events, and a strong sense of self-expression.

Where do you want to study

Germany and France have a lot to offer in academia and are some of the most appreciated centers for international students, with a continuous rise in popularity. Germany has almost 400 universities that excel in areas such as engineering, chemistry, and physics. Some of the best academic centers in Germany are:

  • Technische Universität München:
  • Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin:
  • Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.

International universities offer programs for English-speaking international students, but to be able to manage your day-to-day life, you will need to speak the language and blend in with the locals.

Ten of France’s universities can be found in the top 300 best universities in the world and the fields vary from management, and science, to literature and languages. Some of the most renowned universities are:

  • Université PSL (Paris Sciences & Lettres);
  • Ecole Polytechnique;
  • Sorbonne University.

Think about your long-term plans as well. If you want to move to either Germany, France, or other countries that speak these languages, you will have a greater chance of finding the right career if you study at one of their universities.

Level of difficulty

Most people think that German is a complicated language, with impossibly long and hard-to-spell words. It’s important to keep in mind that, for English speakers especially, German can be quite easy to learn, because almost 40% of its vocabulary is similar to the English one.

German can seem difficult to learn at first, but once you get a hold of it, it will become easier to get to the next level.

Ultimately, you can try learning both German and French and decide which one meets your criteria. Make sure you get enough practice and use all Mondly tools to uncover the vastness of each of these languages.

Choosing between French and German is not an easy task. They both require dedication and passion for learning and are both essential languages in the European Union. Make a plan and follow the required steps to enjoy a fulfilling personal and professional life, and the decision will follow naturally.

Get Mondly now and you’ll have access to the following resources:

  • practical topics;
  • bite-sized lessons;
  • real-life conversations, and so much more.

Start using Mondly for free on your computer or download the app and learn French or German anytime, anywhere. 

7 comments on “German vs French: Which language is more useful to learn

  1. It’s indeed a tough choice …
    French or German…

    Something that we may add also that can help in the process of choosing a language is the distance between the target language and our mother tongue.
    As you know, they are several language families romance, germanic or Slavic for instance.
    It would be easier for someone to learn another language within the same family language.
    For example, a French native will earn italian quickly than german.
    Does that make sense to you?

    1. Of course. I immigrated from Mexico to Canada almost 3 years ago, but recently an idea came to my mind about moving to Luxembourg. They speak both french and german so if I want to do move there I would have no choice but to learn both. When I said, what if we learn French? Is anyway the second official language of Canada, maybe it might take us three months to have the same French level that three years of English took for us to learn. However, I’m not scared of the long german words, my good memory can handle it, same with English which I can read and write very good but talking is not my best strength, mostly because of the lack of practice in the outside world, but listening french drives me crazy because of the sounds that are hard to create, same with English but you can still say the words and being understood only showing your english was not great. What I listened to in Quebec, people speaking french was undecipherable, and my tongue quickly got tired of trying to copy the language. I don’t know if that was because I didn’t have any knowledge of a second language at all, especially french, or if that was because in fact french is hard to pronounce, german I still don’t know how difficult it sounds besides small parts of American movies about WWII where the NAZIs talk among them, but I see people more scared of the long words of german than its complex pronunciation. I would say, we have to give each language a try starting from the very basics rules and texts about grammar because trying to learn French in Duolingo doesn’t work. I would have definitely had a better time during those two months if I started learning French from the roots, I had the basics of English before coming here but not french.
      So my major advice is to search and study french or german from the roots of the language, those apps usually require you to know a little bit to make a sentence so you can read it or understand, definitely Duolingo is not the best app for french, for English, it’s good even if it is repetitive. Remember how your teachers used to teach you in elementary or primary school in the first or second grades your native language. In the same way, a foreign language must be studied from the beginning just like that.

  2. French language most important than Germain language,
    There’s a lot of Francophone countries in world like France, Belgium, Switzerland, Luxembourg, Monaco, Andorra, Canada, Senegal, Togo, Congo, Djibouti, Madagascar, Haiti ,Vanuatu, Morocco, Mali and other countries in Africa and America’s.

    1. Your criteria is way-off. There are indeed more French speaker countries than German speaker ones. German is official in 6 countries, whereas French is official in 29 countries, but almost all of them (except France, Canada, Belgium, Luxembourg, Switzerland) are located in undeveloped countries in Africa. And I don’t think you want to work or live in those countries, do you? French is more widespread, that’s a fact. It will allow you to communicated with more people overall, but that’s not all. Here are some other factors to keep in mind when choosing among one of these two: Germany has the biggest economy in Europe; France is a reference in social sciences, political sciences and cuisine, whereas Germany is a reference in healthcare, nature sciences and engineering; in general, it’s easier to immigrate to Germany than to France; both of them are rich, but Germany offers more quality of life; the French language is growing faster than German, mostly in Africa; French is a must in Québec, so if you want to live or work there, you should learn it; Outside Europe, French has way more speakers than German, but since Germany’s economy is stronger, there are more jobs opportunities in German companies than in French ones.
      Takeaway: both of them are very popular across the world and will provide you many job opportunities, but the decision among one of them is only up to you, your goals, future perspective, etc. Even though French has more speakers overall, it doesn’t always mean it will be the right choice for you. Of course it’s fine to choose a language just for fun, but try to choose a language embedding deep meanings into it.

  3. But the majority of the countries you mentioned are in africa, and i dont think that an african country can help you in your career or your cultural life. The countries that are in europe like Switzerland and Luxembourg also speak German. And instead of Monaco there is Liechtenstein.
    But İ gotta say i agree with you in Canada point.

  4. French is an important language for diplomats as well. Emilio, if you want to move to Luxembourg, consider learning French first. It is the first language in most work places.

  5. So confused about which to learn? The French seem to be very provincial and snobbish about how their language is spoken.
    Help!! I live in Arizona, USA.

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