One-to-one language exchange evenings in Montpellier
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One-to-one language exchange evenings in Montpellier

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Today we are going to tell you about the language exchange evenings that ILA’s French language students have attended regularly.

Language exchange evenings are an effective way to meet many people and help one another with the language we are trying to learn!

Various formulas exist : French / English evenings; French / Spanish; French / German and sometimes French / Italian.

The idea is to find new friends who are as passionate about learning another language as you are, all within a relaxed, bar type atmosphere no matter what your level is!

Native speakers come together to connect and share a fun and productive moment !



How does it work ?

Left side the language you speak fluently, right side the language you wish to practise

8 minutes in French, 8 minutes in English (or German, Spanish or Italian). When you hear the gong, you swap partner !

How was the language exchange concept born ?

This brilliant concept was set up by Tom from GoLingo which is in partnership with the World Food Programme’s ‘School Meals Project’. Every time a student participates, a donation is made that feeds a child in need for a day.


Tom, originally  from Wales, decided to travel the world after he finished his degree. He spent time mostly in South America, where he volunteered in various hospitals and orphanages, and set up a fund raising project in Sucre, Bolivia. After attending a language exchange event during his travels in South America, he set up the same concept of one-to-one conversations between native Spanish and English speakers.

Why Montpellier ?

Tom then decided to learn French. He went to Montpellier in the South of France where he set up the same concept. Montpellier was just the ideal place to do it : a vibrant city with 10 000 students studying French as a foreign language and local students – actually 25%  of the population, learning different languages.


What do our French language immersion students say about language exchange evenings ?

Oli from Leeds : ” a fun and useful evening ! I Arrived at the bar about 30 minutes before registration, paid a cheap participation fee, collected my free drink at the bar and then got to know my fellow participants before starting the conversations!

Ursula from Hamburg : ” it is a bit like the speed dating concept but it is much more fun ! You speak to 5 different people for approximately 16 minutes each. It is very well organized : after 8 minutes when you hear the gong, you start speaking in the other language for another 8 minutes! Some topics, conversation starters and useful expressions are on the table so you’ll never run out of things to say !

Jairo from Colombia : “I spent a great evening ! I got on really well with two students from the Sciences University. We could stay after the event and played fun board games all evening !”

Pernilla from Sweden : “I just love it ! I got a loyalty card ! I go every Tuesday and Thursdays !”