Kingston - Post Report Question and Answers

How much of the local language do you need for daily living? Are local language classes/tutors available and affordable?

Jamaicans speak English, but sometimes patois is difficult to understand. - May 2022

English, forget about learning Patois as it's difficult. - May 2022

Everyone speaks English. - Jan 2020

This is English speaking post, but sometimes it is hard to understand Jamaicans because of the local dialect. - Aug 2018

A little patois comes in handy. - Jun 2018

Jamaica's official language is English but most of what you'll hear from Jamaicans outside of work is the locally spoken patois. Sometimes this can be difficult to understand but it's a lot of fun to listen to and try to learn. - Mar 2017

None but some people don't speak or write English very well. - Apr 2016

English is the official language of Jamaica. Locals do speak Patois (local dialect) among each other but everyone speaks English. If you speak English then you'll have no problems in Jamaica. - Dec 2014

None. - Mar 2014

They speak English here, but picking up some Jamaican slang is helpful. - Dec 2013

English. Patois would also help! - Aug 2011

The language here is english, but you'll start to pick up the patois easily if you try. - Sep 2010

They speak english. Some speak patois, which is english but hard to understand at first - Jul 2010

English is the national language. - May 2010

Middle and upper class Jamaicans speak standard English and in many cases are more polite than American. Almost all of the poorer locals can understand Standard English. Many can also speak Standard English. It can be helpful to you to make an effort to understand patois, as it will benefit you in understanding what someone is really saying. - Nov 2009

English is spoken here, but the Jamaican accent can be very hard to understand sometimes. - Jan 2009

None, the local language is English. - Jan 2009

While English is spoken, Patios is the language on the street. So to get the best prices on the road, one must be able to barter and Patio is better, as they find you amusing. I hate this but many vendors charge you double or triple the price that a local person gets. - May 2008

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