Although the Francophonie is getting larger globally—that is, the number of people who speak French—use of the language seems to be on the decline in certain corners of Europe. Yesterday when I traveled from Spain to France on Vueling airline, all the announcements on the plane by flight attendants were made in Spanish and in English—instead of in French, the language of the destination country. Also, employees of businesses inside the Valencia airport all preferred I speak English rather than French. I understand that the former has replaced the latter in international parlance. But France is Spain’s next-door neighbor, so that bugged me.
3 Responses to “Vueling’s Verbalization”
It is certainly interesting that the airline did not make announcements in French, the language of the destination country. I hope it is not due to any actual bias against their neighbors, the French. Were there many French natives on the flight from Spain to France who could have benefited from a French-language announcement? I ask because in my travels across Europe, I see very few French tourists outside of France. Could it be that perhaps the airline, over the course of time, stopped using French on flights from Spain to France because there was very little need for it? Just wondering.
I go to Spain quite a bit (almost every month) but usually fly with Air France as the prices are great when booked in advance. i have, however, taken Vueling a couple of times and have had the same experience. Although Spain is our neighbour, French is not wide spread. Since I usually go to Barcelona, the people are already speaking two languages (Catalan and Spanish) so I find not a lot speak English very well and French even less.
The same, however, can be said for when I fly AF from Paris to Barcelona. All announcements are done in French but the second language is often English and not Spanish. If Spanish is heard, it is usually via a tape recorded announcement (which also often plays a Japanese version as well, believe it or not). I am sure that is annoying to a lot of the people who are Spanish and going back home as well.
So, in the end, not sure what the reason is but it happens both ways !
I do wonder at the value of any inflight announcements. They are all done so fast that I think no-one listens or understands any more!
I had the same experience with Vueling recently too .. to Italy though if I remember well (so still Spanish and English between Italy and France :).