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I Used HelloTalk & Tandem: The Best App Was…

Welcome, in this article an incredible fight will go down between the two greatest language exchange platforms. This will be the Coke vs Pepsi, the Netflix vs Hulu, the Burger King vs McDonald of language exchange reviews.

Which one you choose will likely affect the amount of time it takes you to get a reliable language partner and progress in your target language.

Personally, I think that the better app (of the two) is obvious from experience. However, before telling you my subjective opinion, I’ll let you in on all of the facts for both.

Are you ready for this epic brawl between the two biggest language exchange apps? Let’s dive into it!

two crossed cartoon swords with a title that says "Tandem Vs HelloTalk"

HelloTalk & Tandem: Why They're Great, Why They Suck

Let’s go over what each of these apps does, and the pros and cons of both. In this section, the answer to “Which one is best for you” will most likely be answered. As you know what you want more than anyone else.

Keep in mind that both apps will connect you with potential language partners, but each has its own features that stand out. And plus, you can always download and use both until you form your own opinion!

HelloTalk: The Instagram, Facebook, & Twitter of Language Exchange

HelloTalk has 25 million language learners from over 150 different countries, making it extremely easy to find speakers of almost any language. Hell, there’s even a big community of Georgians!

During my three years using HelloTalk, my life has changed dramatically, and I give a lot of credit to this app. I have made such good connections through this app, that I have even traveled and met one of these people in their home country!

HelloTalk is like a mixture of Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter - but for language learners only. Doesn’t that just sound like a dream come true?

The people on this app (from my experience) are generally extremely friendly, welcoming, and happy to teach you their language. However, there are super unreliable and rude people too.

The app is broken down into 5 sections: HelloTalk (Messages), Moments (Posts), Connect (Browse accounts), Live (Join live events), and Me (Your profile, followers, etc).

If you’re interested in going over my full guide & review of HelloTalk, click here. Now, let’s go over the pros, and cons of HelloTalk, as well as the cost of their premium subscription.

collage of screenshots using the HelloTalk app

What Countries Use HelloTalk The Most?

Hellotalk is used most in Japan, The United States, Taiwan, the United Kingdom, and Canada. While this tells you “where” the app is used, this doesn’t necessarily reflect which languages have the most speakers on HelloTalk.

Due to immigration, you may find many Spanish speakers (for example) who are using the app from the USA to learn English to adapt to where they moved to.

Pros of HelloTalk

  • Tons of super helpful native-speakers to practice with

  • It’s like having an Instagram where everyone is a language learner

  • There are live events full of native speakers that you can practice with

  • The community is full of intelligent, friendly, and interesting people

  • There are built-in language learning tools (to practice on the go)

Cons of HelloTalk

  • Limited capabilities with the free version

  • Some guys harass women

  • Both men and women on HelloTalk might be seeking relationships

  • You’ll find partners that say they are committed but aren’t reliable

Cost of HelloTalk VIP Membership

The cost of the HelloTalk VIP Membership is currently $4.99 per month (if you pay by month) and $2.17 per month (if you pay by year).

Pros of HelloTalk VIP Membership:
  • See who visited your profile

  • No more ads

  • Unlimited ability to translate messages

  • Search “nearby” users

  • Learn more languages (up to 3)

  • Search for users from specific locations

Tandem: The Tinder of Language Exchange

Funny enough, I used to joke around with an old friend who preferred Tandem over HelloTalk by calling Tandem “Tinder.” Come to find out, some people actually agree with me on that!

From my experience, Tandem is much less community-based and takes a “one-on-one approach.” There is a section for: Conversations, Finding Partners, and Tutors.

One thing that Tandem has which HelloTalk doesn’t, is a review section for every profile. Since you can’t look at someone's posts to see what kind of person they are (like with HelloTalk), Tandem allows people to leave reviews - mentioning “How it was to talk to you.”

Overall, tandem is an app that allows language learners to connect with one another (one-on-one) in a fast and simple way.

collage of screenshots using the tandem app

What Countries Use HelloTalk The Most?

Tandem is used most by people in The United States, Brazil, Spain, Argentina, & Japan. As mentioned in this section for HelloTalk, these mentioned countries may have many immigrants that speak different languages natively than the language spoken in that country.

Pros of Tandem

  • The interface looks a bit better than HelloTalk

  • Tandems free version offers a lot of value

  • You can hire tutors on the app

Cons of Tandem

  • Lack of community

  • Makes you go through an application process (and wait) to join

  • Only 1 million users (HelloTalk has 25 million)

Cost of Tandem Pro

Tandem Pro costs $6.99 per month for a monthly subscription, $3.99 per month for a 3-month subscription, and $2.92 per month for a year-long subscription.

Pros of Tandem Pro Membership:
  • Unlimited translations

  • No more ads

  • See who viewed your profile

  • Search users in specific countries or cities

  • Create invite-only private language parties

The Best Language Exchange App Out of These Two Is…

HelloTalk. Period. With a much greater number of users, a friendly community, a section for posting, and built-in learning software, HelloTalk triumphs over Tandem.

However, if you don’t care about seeing posts from other people, and would rather have a one-on-one style of learning - shoot, Tandem might be best for you.

I suggest that you try both and see for yourself which one is your favorite. Personally, after having used both for some time, Tandem is no longer on my phone, and I will continue with HelloTalk.

graphic showing the pros of HelloTalk and Tandem

Wanna see what other people say about Tandem & HelloTalk?

Now that you have heard about how each app works, and the pros and cons of both, now let’s hear what other people have to say. These opinions are taken from Reddit pages, and reviews on the applications themselves, so they are 100% authentic and unsponsored.

Review #1 - "Here Are The Pros & Cons"

  • HelloTalk you’ll meet a lot more people. For example, I made 1 post and got 20 messages within 5 minutes.

  • HelloTalk has a community where you can ask questions and get corrections, but Tandem doesn’t really have that.

  • Tandem you’ll have more quality conversations. Usually not as many, but people on there tend to rely more and actually engage in conversation. On HelloTalk I usually fall out of touch within a few hours at most.

Review #2 - Too much dating, too little learning

For me, it sadly didn't help. Both apps feel more like dating apps than anything else. It's really difficult to find a serious language partner who doesn't start flirting at some point and then drop you if you refuse those attempts.

Review #3 - I love both apps

Both apps helped me elevate my language skills. Text messages, audio messages, video calls... All useful output in my learning language, Russian.

Conclusion: HelloTalk & Tandem, Which Is The Best?

From my experience, HelloTalk is the best language exchange app out of the two. However, I suggest that you try both if you’re on the fence about it. Both have their pros and cons.

If you are a woman, you might find that Tandem proves to be a safer atmosphere, as you can read reviews on people’s accounts before talking with them. However, if you choose not to read my full HelloTalk review, this is what I want you to know about these language exchange apps…

People are looking for relationships. Personally, I have dealt with this many times, both when I was alright with it, and when I wasn’t into it (just being honest lol),

So be honest with yourself about what you want out of the HelloTalk community, and if you know that there’s no way in hell that you are going to start a relationship through HelloTalk, write that in your bio/profile description, trust me, it will help you out.

Thanks so much for stopping by Acquire The Language, if you want to learn about some super interesting methods for learning languages, check out the 13 methods I utilize daily.

Have a wonderful day, friend, warm regards,

~ Ben.


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