While English can be considered a global lingua franca, its users only account for 20% of the world's population, which is approximately 1.5 billion people. And in a world that is continuously becoming more interconnected, learning another language can become a key advantage, especially nowadays when working across time zones has become a norm.

Knowing a foreign language goes beyond being able to ask for directions when you’re in another country. Being bilingual actually comes with several benefits that may outweigh your difficulties in learning.

There are many benefits to learning a new language. There are many benefits to learning a new language. Photo: Pixabay

If you're thinking of learning another language but do not know what to pick, here are five of the best languages you can easily learn this year.

1. Mandarin

Chinese is one of the most widely spoken languages globally — there are over a billion native speakers. Although there are many variations to Chinese, Mandarin is one that is widely used.

It is widely spoken in developing countries, such as Malaysia, Indonesia, Thailand, Brunei, The Philippines and Mongolia. And since China is one of the world's fastest-growing major economies, learning how to speak Mandarin would also benefit users, especially in business. Chinese business partners are said to have a great deal of respect for those who take the time to be fluent in their language.

While it may seem difficult at first, there are plenty of online courses that can teach you Mandarin, like this one from Fluent City. If you want more interactive lessons, then you can try its group classes, which are available at a reasonable price. 

Fluent City offers Spanish Classes Fluent City offers Spanish Classes Photo: www.fluentcity.com

2. Spanish

Spanish is one of the most useful languages to learn because it has many native speakers. With over 400 million users worldwide, the chances of you meeting someone who speaks it is very high — especially if you're in America, where there are over 40 million native users.

There is also a total of 20 countries whose first language is Spanish, so it will truly broaden your capabilities to connect. Whether you're hoping to travel to South and Central America for leisure or business, it would be good to have some Español ready.

Bring your knowledge of Spanish beyond tacos and tequilas and try a group class for the basics of Spanish. Learn the fundamental words and phrases — and maybe even equip yourself enough to converse with Latina beauties, like Sofia Vergara, Shakira and more!

3. Hindi

The role of India in today's economy seems to be continuously growing. Thus, part of our list is Hindi, which is spoken by over half a billion people around the globe. Apart from the advantages of business, it is also a good way to understand a diverse culture that is rooted in spirituality and vigor.

Many people travel to India in search of spirituality. So, if you ever find yourself craving for that "Eat, Pray, Love" moment, then having a good grasp of Hindi would be a great way to impress your guru.

Why not take your love for pasta to the next level by learning the Italian language? Representation. Photo: Pixabay

4. Italian

Who doesn't love how Italian rolls so elegantly on a tongue? While it doesn't have as many users like the others on our list, it is one of the most romantic languages in the world — it is even considered the "language of love". This is evident in the many historical and artistic texts written in Italian.

Italy is filled with passion for anything beautiful — be it people, scenery or even food! There is much appreciation to be learned for anything "bella," and with pasta already playing such a big part in our lives, why not take a course on Italian?  

5. Korean

Get in on the K-pop craze by learning Korean. Even if you're quite unfamiliar with it now, the phonetics involved in understanding Korean is pretty easy. This is because unlike languages that were developed through centuries, Korean was invented. Its writing system, Hangul, was also designed specifically to be easy to learn and use. Imagine being able to listen to your favorite K-pop hits and actually understanding the words!

Fluent City makes it easy for you to learn another language. Fluent City makes it easy for you to learn another language. Photo: fluentcity.com

Learning something new does not have to be difficult. Of course, you have to put in the effort to learn and understand a new language system, but Fluent City makes it easier for its students with its well-designed and easily customizable language lessons. With an option between group classes or private lessons, find out the best way for you to progress in the language of your choice.

You can also take a free assessment test if you're unsure of your level for a particular language.

Learn a new language today. Learn a new language today. Photo: fluentcity.com

With the number of resources available to you today, there is no excuse for you not to be able to learn a language you’ve always wanted to speak. Who knows, maybe what starts as a casual hobby eventually leads you to new experiences and opportunities of a lifetime.