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Category: Culture

Teach Or Be Tutored In New Languages Online Using Preply

This post is sponsored by Preply. [What is this?]


Preply is an online tutoring service you can use to take (socially distanced) language classes with a live tutor or apply to become a tutor yourself to earn a side income. When Preply got in touch we took a look at the service from both sides, taking a French class as well as communicating with tutors to get their feedback.

What Is Preply?

Essentially, Preply is an online school where you can work with a live tutor one-on-one to take customized languages classes. During the sign up process, which is free with an account, you tell the system the language you want to learn, current proficiency, as well as the reason for learning (e.g. career. travel, etc.). Additionally you set your available times, hourly budget (prices vary but average $15-40), as well as how many lessons per week you want to take.

how preply works

You’ll be given a short language test to verify proficiency before you’re given a choice of tutors. The entire setup takes around 10 minutes. For tutors, on their side of the setup, parameters are nearly the same.

How It Works

As you’re looking through some of the recommended tutors you can see their native tongue, proficiency levels in other languages, plus a small blurb about them. Each tutor is also required to provide a short video introducing themselves on their profile so you can get a better idea of their personality as well.

preply language classes

Preply has a built-in messaging system for (potential and current) students and teachers as well as a reminder system, emailing before lessons.

Preply Experience

A lot of how Preply works is based on its tutor base, which for most languages numbers in the hundreds. The ratings and reviews left by other users can also help you narrow down your search for the right tutor. Once you’ve set on a particular teacher for a lesson, they’ll create a custom lesson plan to help you reach your language goal. Built into Preply is a video system so you connect through your account on the site and converse live with your teacher; plus see any slides or media they’ve prepared.


There’s no set commitment to a particular tutor so if you want to change after a few lessons, you’re free to do so. Being live interaction with a tutor one-on-one lets them craft individual classes for you specifically and gives you plenty of opportunity to ask questions. Preply Space is another feature the platform uses to connect students and tutors, giving both access to a private chat space, plus a study room of sorts where saved lesson plans can be found.

Side Income For Tutors

For tutors, Preply opens a way to generate a side income completely online. Tutors set their hourly rates, typically the more experience and regular students one has the higher the rate they can set. Top tutors can also potentially be selected for corporate language training program to earn more.

The flexibility of setting rates and competitive space among tutors gives them a better chance to earn money by teaching languages to people online and gives students a lot of information on choosing the ideal teacher for them. Connecting with native speakers through Preply can also give you insight into cultural aspects of a language like slang for example, boosting your confidence to practically apply all you’ve learned.

The Single Best Piece Of Advice For Travelers To India

Traveling in India can be the most frustrating and amazing experience, often at the same time, but there’s one piece of advice that will let you appreciate the entire experience. During a recent episode of the foXnoMad Podcast, my guest Cristina Boronat summed up eloquently a lesson to take with you before visiting India.

The travelers who end up hating India miss this key wisdom Cristina gleaned from years of experience in the country, which you should watch in the video here.

What It’s Like Traveling As A Woman In Pakistan

Pakistan is not a particularly common travel destination (on par with Ivory Coast by tourists annually) and for many reading this, that isn’t surprising. What may be even more surprising is that tourism to Pakistan has tripled since 2018, attracting adventurous travelers intrigued by a less visited destination.

Since I wrote about what it’s like traveling in Pakistan, many of you asked what it would be like for a woman traveling there? To give a firsthand answer to the question, I recently spoke with Ellie Quinn who joined me on an episode of the foXnoMad Podcast you can listen to here.

Ellie traveled to Pakistan overland from India and shared what that border crossing was like, how to dress, plus vividly describes the country’s northern mountains. She enjoyed her time in Pakistan so much, Ellie’s begun running tours there if you’re up for your own adventure.

We also spoke about the differences between traveling in India verses Pakistan as a woman in an interesting and enlightening conversation you’ll learn a lot from. You can watch the full episode here, download here to listen, and find Ellie on YouTube and Instagram.

Plovdiv’s Roman Theater Sees Time And Use In Bulgaria Today

plovdiv roman theater bulgaria

All the world’s a stage, some stages though their own players, over time, playing many parts. Built in the first century AD at the height of the Roman Empire, Plovdiv’s Roman theater has hosted plays, gladiator fights, and more recently, metal concerts. Rumored to have been damaged by Attila the Hun (evidence is scant) and later buried by landslides, its discovery again in the early 1970s is a second act worth visiting.

Bulgaria is full of these lesser known historical sites, like Asen’s Fort, which are visually impressive in blending city and nature. Plovdiv’s Roman theater is in center of Bulgaria‘s second largest city of the same name – one of many potential day trips from the capital Sofia. Photos are possible from the gates above but its worth an entry ticket to wander around inside, sitting for a moment to contemplate what these seats have witnessed.

Don’t forget to walk down to the bottom looking to the sides of the stages where there are some small areas to explore. A few inscriptions remain; where various residents should sit and reservations for important people long since passed into oblivion.

The Tea Shop In Bundi, India That Changed Chai

A few have good business ideas, less follow through on them, but when someone does be guaranteed people will try to rip it off. Starting in 1999, that’s exactly what happened in Bundi, India; a sleepy northwestern town that doesn’t see many, if any, tourists throughout the year. Mainly a day trip for visitors with a bit of time moving to Jaipur or Udaipur, the single road leading through the town’s heart has a handful of shops that must work hard to entice the occasional tourist.

Krishna’s Chai Shop found a way to be the must-visit experience in Bundi, with help from a few creative visitors and it’s now an idea many are trying to replicate. You can watch the entire story in the video above or read on.

One Man Operation

Krishna is middle-aged, thin, and speaks little English but his smile can be universally understood. His cheerful demeanor is amplified by the bright yellow walls of Krishna’s Chai Shop. Until 1999 Krishna’s was merely a stall serving chai, the common spiced tea enjoyed all over India. Chai is hardly unique although Krishna’s smile caught the attention of travelers getting off the beaten path in Bundi.

krishna chai bundi india

Some helped him paint the small shop and others later used the vibrant walls as canvas to share messages from around the world.

The Right Spice

Aside from chai, Krishna serves a blend of various teas including honey lemon ginger and other special blends for a variety of tastes. He’s an artisan, crafting each cup with ingredients ground by stone at his feet. Sitting for hours a day cross-legged Krishna’s smile never waivers for his customers. Over the years, visitors have helped Krishna craft a Facebook page plus added him on Tripadvisor, with a banner above the shop to advertise.

Getting Noticed

Especially in a town as small as Bundi, this relative popularity has gotten local attention – both for tea drinkers and opportunistic tea shops. Across Krishna’s now you’ll find a handful of chai shops with brightly painted walls, banners advertising social media accounts, and a small kettle outside with tea.

krishnas chai shop

Those shops will often try to get you to leave or avoid Krishna’s altogether, often bad mouthing him in the process. It works on a lot of visitors who don’t know any better but Krishna’s is still most popular with Bundi locals as well as anybody who’s been already.

What the other shops can’t replicate is Krishna’s smile, joy of working his craft, and his honesty. (Prices are the same for locals as for tourists but I’ll add, tipping is appreciated.) The tea and Krishna’s unique stock of spice blends helps but Krishan’s Chai Shop is infused with his personality.

These days Krishna’s bright yellow walls might catch the attention of a visiting passerby but the experience will have you coming back during your visit in Bundi. Don’t be fooled by the bland copy-paste competition all around, Krishna’s is the best place for chai in Bundi.

A Look Inside Lahore’s Weekly Opium-Fueled Sufi Festival

Every Thursday night in the outskirts of Lahore, Pakistan, heavily intoxicated Sufi followers take part in festival of music, dancing, and chanting. Beginning around 9pm the deep bass of beats from a long, double-sided drum can be heard from the Madho Lal Hussain Shrine – a thump thump thump fueling vigorous coordinated movements.

You can see this weekly Sufi festival which I attended, in the video above. It’s one of those times where showing you makes much more sense than attempting to describe the unison spinning, headbanging, and guttural chants. A gathering which takes places within a cloud of opium and hashish, dispersing light from small fires lit all around; adding a mystical quality to what you’re seeing. (With a possible contact high included.)

Until the morning the dancers go, spinning and shaking their heads vigorously causing their long black hair to fly in the air. Children play around the shrine, families sit at the steps, while closer to the music groups of men sit around campfires drinking teas and taking heavy hits from joints loaded with opium and weed. You can hear more about my experience right after it happened in this episode of the foXnoMad Podcast.

As an observer (filming with conspicuous camera and microphone) hardly anyone paid attention to me. Despite the energy, crowds, and semblance of chaos, the atmosphere was relaxed – likely in part due to the actual local atmosphere.

The Sufi festival at the Madho Lal Hussain Shrine is yet another example of what it’s like to travel in Pakistan. An unexpected experience in a country that has more contradictions than it might seem from the outside.


About Anil Polat

foxnomad aboutHi, I'm Anil. foXnoMad is where I combine travel and tech to help you travel smarter. I'm on a journey to every country in the world and you're invited to join the adventure! Read More

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