Spanish-Speaking Countries You Should Know About
Spanish is the second most spoken language in the world. With over 20 countries that speak Spanish as their official language, many are interested in improving their Spanish for various purposes. After all, those who can communicate with more than one language enjoy more opportunities in most aspects of their life.
There are more than 400 million Spanish speakers in the world. It seconds the Chinese language for being the most spoken language, and English comes third. This is one of the reasons why many Americans are getting more interested in learning the language. Not only is it widely spoken, but it is also getting common in US territory.
The countries that speak Spanish
There are exactly 21 countries that speak Spanish as their official or second language, and these are the following:
- Costa Rica
- Dominican Republic
- El Salvador
- Equatorial Guinea
- Puerto Rico
As noticed, Latin America has the majority of Spanish-speaking natives. But that is mainly due to the region’s history and influences. And among these countries, Mexico holds the biggest population of Spanish speakers with over 120 million. Colombia follows closely with 50 million, and Argentina with 45 million native speakers.
The other countries that widely use the Spanish language
Outside these 21 countries, there are more countries that speak Spanish as one of their primary languages. Here is the list of those countries and how they came to speak the language.
1. United States
13% of the American population has Spanish as their first language. That’s second to Mexico for being the largest Spanish-speaking country. Although English is the USA’s official language, many are undoubtedly keen on speaking Spanish as it’s one of the most studied languages in the US. In fact, it is estimated to have more than 138 million Americans speaking Spanish by 2050.
Brazil’s official language is Portuguese. But since it is situated in Latin America where most countries speak Spanish, Brazilians adapted Spanish as one of their mainly used languages.
Currently, there are about 6 million Spanish speakers from Brazil who have Spanish as their second or third language. Some even speak a pidgin language known as Portuñol or a mix of the Portuguese and the Spanish.
While Belize’s official language is English, more than 50% of its population uses Spanish.
Canada’s official languages are English and French. However, due to the country’s multicultural territory, the Spanish language became widely spoken. In fact, it is Canada’s most spoken foreign language, with almost 1.8 million Canadians speaking it.
5. ABS (Aruba, Bonaire, and Curacao) islands
Due to their proximity to Central and South Africa, the ABC Islands speak the Spanish language widely. In Aruba, about 80% of its population speaks Spanish. Whereas Bonaire and Curacao have 59% of their population speaking Spanish.
Switzerland has four official languages, namely, German, French, Italian, and Romansh. But among its popular second languages, the Spanish tops them all. There are about 150,000 Spanish speakers in Switzerland.
Andorra’s official language is Catalan. However, due to the Spanish immigrants moving to the country back in 1955-1985, many learned to speak the language. Today, about 70% of the population speak Spanish.
This British overseas territory has English as its official language. However, due to its proximity to Spain, most of its locals speak the Spanish language.
Morocco used to be a Spanish colony, making it a Spanish-speaking country. The Spanish language is considered as the second language in Morocco. It is more commonly used in the northern region due to its proximity to Spain.
10. Sahrawi Arab Democratic Republic
The country had Spanish as the official language back in the 19th and 20th centuries. Today, the country’s official languages are Arabic and Spanish, with the former being more widely used than the latter.
When Spain became a Catholic nation in 1492, the Spanish-speaking Muslims flew out of the country and went to Algeria. Also, during the end of the Spanish civil war, a number of Republicans took exile to Algeria. These instances made the country home of Spanish speakers.
The Philippines is the only Asian country that widely spoke the Spanish language. The Spanish language used to be its official language back in 1565-1898 due to the Spanish colonization. The language was used as a co-official language until 1987.
Today, the official language of the country is Filipino. But the Spanish language made its way to influence some other languages of the country. For instance, Bisaya has many Spanish words, and the Chavacano is very similar to Spanish.
Australia doesn’t necessarily include the Spanish language in its most spoken languages. However, due to the immigration of Hispanics to the country, Spanish has become more popular.
Benefits of learning the Spanish language
Apart from the fact that several countries speak Spanish, there are more reasons why you should pursue learning a foreign language. Here are some:
- It surpasses the number of English speakers, which means lots of opportunities in several areas like career, travels, and relationships.
- Spanish is one of the easiest foreign languages to learn when you are an English speaker.
- It is one of the most used languages across the Internet.
- Knowing the language broadens your employment prospects.
- You can acquire a Spanish language certificate, which is sometimes a condition of immigration.
Where to learn Spanish
Now that you know how many countries speak Spanish, aren’t you more amped up to learn the language? You have so many choices in where to study Spanish without stepping out of your house. Skill Success has a wide array of comprehensive Spanish classes you can take. Here are some must-picks to check out: