Mandarin in the south

October 03, 2009, 06:34 PM posted in General Discussion

So it's settled. I'm going to China for a year. Yay!

I'm going to live in Foshan, and I've got to ask: how much do people speak Mandarin down there? Cantonese is the traditional language, after all. So, two questions:

1: Does everyone speak and understand Mandarin in the south? Even the elderly in the countryside?

2: Do people habitually speak Mandarin with each other? If a Foshan resident walks into a Foshan shop, will she speak Cantonese? Of course I'll be an outsider, but will speaking Mandarin to people make me even more so, is what I'm getting at.

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October 03, 2009, 06:57 PM

well, i live near foshan.. natives from that area usually speak cantonese, but there alot of people from others provinces who cant speak cantonese, so you will listen both of languages, anyway if you talk to a chinese,they will speak mandarim to you. Everyone understand Mandarim,since its the official language in china and they need to learn it at school. maybe some old people cant speak so well since they didnt study.