Best Duolingo Alternatives To Learn A New Language (2023)

Duolingo Alternatives

1. iTalki

Who it’s for: Users who want to connect with real tutorsDuoLingo’s AI-based learning approach is great but one thing that is sorely missing is the lack of real human interaction. Duolingo does a good job of teaching you the basics and its spoken exercises can help you get a decent grasp of how to say things in the language you’re learning. But at the end of the day, nothing can replace talking with an actual native speaker.iTalki is a great platform where you can get real tutors in the language you’re learning–both community tutors and native speakers, to talk to you over video-conferencing. iTalki lets the tutors set their own rates. For some languages like Russian, rates can be as low as $6.00 per hour for a community tutor. If you already have a decent grasp of the language and just want some speaking practice, the community tutor option is great–these aren’t professional language instructors, but rather, native speakers who are happy to help you improve your speaking skills. If you want a more guided experience, professional teachers are also on the platform but can be a bit more expensive. iTalki lets you schedule and cancels lessons over the week.The payment process is also integrated into the app so you can handle everything from just a single dashboard. We like to think of iTalki more as a complementary tool to Duolingo, not an alternative. The best language learning approach would be to use Duolingo first to get basic comprehension, and then start using iTalki to get exposure to a native speaker.iTalki is cross-platform with a desktop version as well, but we’ll link you here to the mobile apps.Pros:

Real native-speaker tutors Professional tutors can guide you through actual courses Community tutors are great for improving speaking skills


Tutors for some languages can be very expensive (over $30 per hour)

Download it here: Android | iOS

2. Memrise

Who it’s for: Users who want to expand the size of their vocabularyDuolingo is great because it frames learning in a way that’s similar to the natural language-learning process. You are exposed to phrases and sentences more than just individual words. There’s also a strong association built into it between speaking and listening, and learning. There is a major drawback to this approach, though. It makes it difficult to learn specific words, including basic ones. I’ve spent several months learning a language on Duolingo. I know enough that I can make out a decent amount of the conversation in TV shows. However, because of the way Duolingo works, it leaves out teaching you certain basic words. I know how to say something as complex as “Those people like sitting on chairs and playing on their phones.” But I’d have to check Google Translate to figure out how to say “upper” or “lower.”This is where Memrise comes into the picture. Memrise adopts a completely different strategy from Duolingo. Instead of focusing on conversational fluency, it tries to use the spaced repetition memorization technique to help you build up your vocabulary first. Memrise uses digital flashcards, much like Anki. You get different card decks for different languages. The app uses a spaced repetition algorithm to determine when to show you cards. If you consistently get one right, it will take a longer time before the next time that’s displayed. On the other hand, if you frequently forget the word on a particular card, it may be shown more frequently. Like iTalki, we like to think of Memrise as a companion to Duolingo, not an alternative. Memrise is weak when it comes to building conversational fluency. However, it’s much stronger than Duolingo in building basic vocabulary. It makes sense to use both to cover both areas.Pros:

Uses spaced repetition to help you memorize words effectively

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Doesn’t help much in improving conversational fluency

Download it here: Android | iOS

3. Babbel

Who it’s for: Users who want to go deeper into a specific language.Duolingo is good for beginners, but you won’t go very far with this app. That’s where I’ll recommend Babbel. It combines the translation of Duolingo, with the vocab building of Memrise, thus making is a lot easier to master language learning.Another thing that Babbel does better than Duolingo is grammar. It embeds grammar at the same time as vocabulary so that you’re learning both at the same time.The only caveat though is the price. Unlike Duoling which is free and easy, Babbel has a price. However, the first lesson in every course is free to try. So, you can get an idea of what you are getting into and if you like the service, you can get the full course from $6-$13 per month, depending on one monthly or yearly plan.Pros:

Good for building both grammar and vocabulary


Paid service for the most part

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Download it here: Android | iOS

4. Clozemaster

Who it’s for: Users who want a more game-like experience for fun language learningDuolingo and Memrise even more so, are great learning tools. They have some level of gamification built in (for instance, Duolingo’s league rankings). However, it can feel like a chore to use them at times. After all, their main emphasis is on learning and accessibility, not fun. Clozemaster takes a different approach. It doesn’t claim to be a language learning tool at all. Instead, it projects itself as a game.As the name suggests, Clozemaster makes use of cloze text. What’s this? It’s just the formal way of saying “fill in the blanks.” Clozemaster is a fill-in-the-blanks game for language learning. It displays sentences in the target language, with keywords missing. You get to select the missing words from a couple of options and that’s about it. Your score per language increases as you progress and you get extra bonuses and progress tracking. Clozemaster is a bit closer to Memrise in the sense that it focuses more on pure vocabulary rather than sentence structure. However, if you’re starting to feel that Duolingo is a chore, Clozemaster makes for a fun alternative.Pros:

Gamified experiences reduce learning stress


Limited learning utility–only focuses on fill-in-the-blanks type exercises

Download it here: Android | iOS

5. Hellotalk

Who it’s for: Users who want easy exposure to native speakers through chattingHellotalk adopts the same approach as iTalki–that exposure to native speakers is crucial in langauge learning. However, it departs significantly from the latter in one key respect: it makes use of chatting instead of video calling to help users build their language skills. Users can search for members around the world who speak the language they’re trying to learn and then connect with them via Hellotalk’s chat interface. When chatting, Hellotalk features an extremely handy Grammarly-like correction interface that gives you correct alternatives to incorrect text that you’ve entered. This truly makes it possible to learn from your mistakes. Hellotalk has over 15 million users who speak over 100 languages meaning that you’re almost certainly likely to find a chat partner who speaks the language you’re trying to learn.As a freemium app, though, it does have some drawbacks. Notably, the search function is somewhat limited. Moreover, because it’s an open community you might end up being flooded by requests and social updates: too much of a good thing.Pros:

(Video) Babbel vs Duolingo Review 2023 (Which Language App Is Best?)

Gives you a free method of talking to native language speakers Huge community that speaks over 100 languages


You might be flooded with too many chat requests Search functionality is limited for free users

Download it here: Android | iOS

6. Readlang

Who it’s for: Moderately fluent users who want help reading texts in their target languageThis app is for language learners who are a bit more experienced than the typical Duolingo crowd. It’s oriented towards people who already have a basic working knowledge of the target language and who’re looking to improve their skills through reading actual texts. One difficulty with reading foreign language texts is that even if your vocabulary is fairly well-developed, many words, especially technical terms, can trip you up and make an entire sentence hard to understand. This is where Readlang comes into the picture. This hand tool allows you to translate only the words you need translated in a given sentence. These aren’t simple machine translations, either. There’s a real community involved in phrase translation so that you won’t get confused by particular idioms or turns of phrase that Google Translate can mix up.This comes at a cost, though. The free version only allows you up to 10 phrase translations a day, though letting you do unlimited word translations. The Premium version at a $5 per month subscription gives you unlimited phrase translations too. Installing it on Android and iOS is a bit tricky, though. Instead of being a dedicated app, you get a smart bookmarklet in either Chrome or Safari that gives you Readlang’s functionality on any page you visit.Download it here: Android | iOSPros:

Manually translated phrases, with better results than translation software Helps you translate just the words you need in a sentence


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Not much use for basic langauge learners Unlimited phrase translation costs $5 per month

7. Lingvist

Lingvist is not exactly a Duolingo alternative, but basically just another flashcard-like program. The way it works is quite simple, you open the app, and Lingvist just presents an endless stream of flashcards, so you can practice as much as you want, be it 100 cards or 50, whatever time you have at the moment. This comes in handy when you only have a few minutes available, here and there.Read: 10 Best Flashcard Apps for Android to Improve MemoryWhere Lingvist lacks is the number of languages it offers i.e. – Spanish, German, French, Russian.Download it here: Android | iOSPros:

Native audio Better vocabulary


Few languages

Wrapping Up: Duolingo Alternative

Duolingo is a wonderful intro to a language. And while there are no total alternatives, these are few apps resources you can use along with it. For users who want exposure to real native speakers, Hellotalk and iTalki allow you to do just that, through chat and video calls respectively. Memrise helps you build vocabulary quicker than Duolingo, as does Clozemaster. Readlang helps experienced learners understand just those words they don’t know. They’re not free of issues, though. iTalki can be very pricey–almost as much as hiring a real tutor. And Readlang isn’t really of much help unless you know the language at a basic level already.


Best Duolingo Alternatives To Learn A New Language? ›

Busuu. Busuu is an online language learning platform that is available for a wide range of languages. Busuu offers a social aspect that allows users to get feedback on writing and pronunciation from other users, which Duolingo doesn't have. Busuu offers a language learning experience that compares to Duolingo.

Is there a better way to learn a language than Duolingo? ›

Busuu. Busuu is an online language learning platform that is available for a wide range of languages. Busuu offers a social aspect that allows users to get feedback on writing and pronunciation from other users, which Duolingo doesn't have. Busuu offers a language learning experience that compares to Duolingo.

Can you realistically learn a language on Duolingo? ›

We see this question a lot and the answer is: yes. Duolingo is a free language-learning platform, and every language and lesson is totally free!

Is Duolingo better than Babbel? ›

The biggest difference between Babbel and Duolingo is the approach to language learning. Babbel is a better option if you want traditional language instructions through modules and lessons. By contrast, Duolingo works great if you need a playful, gamified experience.

Is Rosetta Stone better than Duolingo? ›

Yes. After thoroughly testing out and reviewing each language learning app, we found Rosetta Stone to be a superior program to Duolingo. While we like Duolingo's gamification of learning, Rosetta Stone is simply more comprehensive and effective.

Is it worth it to pay for Babbel? ›

For its price, Babbel is worth it depending on what language you're learning. Each language course is created separately, so the quality and depth of the courses may vary. Spanish, for example, is one of the most-developed courses on Babbel and is worth the subscription price.

Which app is better Duolingo or Busuu? ›

Yes, Duolingo offers more immediate and consistent pronunciation feedback than Busuu, as well as a few other small benefits, but when you consider the factors that really matter, Busuu takes the cake.

Is Memrise better than Duolingo? ›

Duolingo is better if you want to figure out how to make a sentence, and Memrise is perfect to help you build up your vocabulary or learn any kind of irregularities. Everything depends on what kind of gaps you need to fill. In case you are a complete beginner, then both apps go hand in hand.

Has anyone ever finished a language on Duolingo? ›

There is no such thing as a “finished” language course. So at Duolingo, we're always working to make our courses better! If you've gotten an update, it's because we're excited to share the latest changes to the existing course.

How many years does it take to learn a language on Duolingo? ›

Here's a breakdown of how long it would take to finish a language, based on the goal settings: 5 Minutes a Day: 4,650 days // 12.7 years. 10 Minutes a Day: 2,325 days // 6.4 years. 15 Minutes a Day: 1,550 days // 4.2 years.

How long does it take to become fluent on Duolingo? ›

Putting in ten hours of study and practice per day, this equates to two months for “easy” languages and four months for “difficult” languages. How do you get started? Web sites such as DuoLingo can teach you 27 languages for free.

How much does Babbel cost a month? ›

Babbel offers several different subscription options to choose from ranging from around $7 to $14 per month, depending on the length of access you want (3-months, 6-months, etc).

What are the weaknesses of Babbel? ›

Content may be too basic for advanced speakers. Babbel has a limited amount of speaking exercises and feedback is not as thorough as competitors. Babbel does not offer live tutoring, which means users cannot speak with a live tutor to practice their language skills. Babbel offers a limited amount of free content.

What makes Babbel different from Duolingo? ›

The main difference between Duolingo and Babbel is that while Babbel focuses on a more robust and traditional form of teaching a foreign language through comprehensive lessons, Duolingo tries to gamify your learning and offer a modern experience.

What percentage of Duolingo users finish their course? ›

Duolingo doesn't release completion rates for its courses, but a report last year said American users ranked 68th out of all countries in the number of lessons completed. A separate informal study put the overall completion rate for Spanish at less than 0.01 percent.

What is the hardest language to learn? ›

Across multiple sources, Mandarin Chinese is the number one language listed as the most challenging to learn. The Defense Language Institute Foreign Language Center puts Mandarin in Category IV, which is the list of the most difficult languages to learn for English speakers.

How long should I use Duolingo per day? ›

To optimize your learning, aim to spend between 15 and 30 minutes on the app each day. If you're struggling to commit a decent amount of time to your learning, try breaking the time up throughout your day. You could spend five minutes practicing in the morning, another five at lunchtime, and five more in the evening.

Is Duolingo enough to master a language? ›

Even with some of the well-developed courses, Duolingo may not be enough to completely teach a language to fluency. As mentioned earlier, Duolingo is great for getting a base in a language—but don't expect to get to advanced fluency on Duolingo alone.

Can you really become fluent with Rosetta Stone? ›

Can you become fluent with Rosetta Stone? No, you will not become fluent by studying a language with Rosetta Stone. This is especially true if you're studying a less popular language like Japanese, Korean, or Arabic. However, you can learn the basics of a language and start to have simple conversations.

How much does Rosetta Stone cost a month? ›

Rosetta Stone has a variety of subscription options: A 3-month subscription runs $36, a 6-month subscription is $66, a 12-month subscription is $96, and a 24-month subscription is $144.

How long does it take to become fluent with Babbel? ›

Each level takes between one and two months to complete. You can expect to be able to start speaking Italian after the first level and progress to a high level of fluency after around six months. Babbel Italian has a tracking feature that allows you to follow your progress as you go through the levels.

Is Babbel 100% free? ›

Registration with Babbel is completely free of charge and the first lesson in every course is free to try.

What is the success rate of Babbel? ›

The efficacy of Babbel is a gain of about 12.7 test points per one hour of study. For truly novice users with no knowledge of Spanish the gain is 18 points and for more advanced users it is about 10 points per hour of study. About 45% of the participants moved up at least one college semester level.

What is the world's #1 language learning app? ›

Duolingo has become the most popular language-learning app today, and for good reasons. The app offers game-like lessons to help you learn more than 35 different languages—all for free.

What is the most useful language learning app? ›

Best language learning apps in 2023 📱
  • Duolingo.
  • Busuu.
  • Babbel.
  • Mondly.
  • Memrise.
  • LingoDeer.
  • Rosetta Stone.
  • HelloTalk.
May 3, 2023

How much does Busuu cost? ›

Busuu Price. A subscription to Busuu Premium costs $13.95 per month, but costs less per month if you buy a longer subscription. In general, the price of Busuu is competitive with other language apps like Babbel and Drops.

Can you become fluent with Memrise? ›

The short answer is no, Memrise won't make you fluent. Since it is not a comprehensive language course, it doesn't teach all necessary skills that will make you fluent in a new language. It does help with some aspects, teaching tons of new vocabulary words which you use in conversation.

What is the difference between Pimsleur and Duolingo? ›

The Main Differences Between Duolingo And Pimsleur:

Duolingo is free, while Pimsleur requires a subscription or a purchase of their courses. Duolingo focuses mainly on the different aspects of a language, with no proper speaking practice, while Pimsleur's courses primarily focus on the oral practice of the language.

What is the most useful language to learn on Duolingo? ›

According to Duolingo, the most popular and most studied languages on the app around the world are: English. Spanish. French.

What language level are you if you finish Duolingo? ›

At Duolingo, we're developing our courses to get you to a level called B2, at which you can get a job in the language you're studying. Reaching that kind of proficiency requires dedication, varied practice opportunities, and a lot of time.

Did Duolingo change again in 2023? ›

Duolingo Classes will wind down and retire on January 18th, 2023. This means hosts and learners will no longer be able to host or attend classes, and the Classes website will not be accessible.

What happens when you finish all of Duolingo? ›

The guidebook can be accessed any time, even when you complete the unit. NOTE: Guidebooks are not available for all languages. Once you complete all the levels in a unit, you'll complete a challenge to earn your unit trophy. You'll also have the option to earn the Legendary trophy for each unit.

Can I take Duolingo 3 times in the month? ›

A. There's no restriction in the number of times a candidate can attempt to take the Duolingo English Test, but one cannot take it more than three times in a period of 30 days.

What is the easiest language to learn? ›

We've used data from the Foreign Service Institute (FSI) to rank them from the easier to the somewhat more challenging.
  • Frisian. ...
  • Dutch. ...
  • Norwegian. ...
  • Spanish. ...
  • Portuguese. ...
  • Italian. ...
  • French. ...
  • Swedish.
Oct 24, 2021

Is Super Duolingo worth it? ›

All things considered, if you're an enthusiastic, devoted language learner like me, Super Duolingo is well worth the price. If you don't mind watching ads and aren't obsessed with your streak, however, continuing to use the free version is probably just fine.

How many lessons a day should I do in Duolingo? ›

Casual is one lesson per day, Regular is two, Serious is three, and Insane is five lessons in a day. I have my daily goal set to Serious, which requires completing three lessons daily, but I'll often do more lessons if I have the time, typically around five or six.

Is B2 considered fluent? ›

Level B2: Basic Fluency

Reaching B2 is generally considered by most people as having basic fluency. You'll have a working vocabulary of around 4000 words.

How many hours a day should I study a foreign language? ›

For most people, around 30 minutes of active study and 1 hour of language exposure a day is a schedule that will give you great results. It's a model that's sustainable over a long period to help you reach fluency.

Is there a free alternative to Babbel? ›

Duolingo. This free app is widely regarded as the best alternative to Babbel, and we agree. While there is a paid version of Duolingo that users can sign up for to access additional features, most find that the free version does a great job of teaching the ins and outs of a new language.

How do I use Babbel without paying? ›

When you access Babbel Live for the first time on the app or website, you will automatically receive 2 free class credits, which can be used to book a class of your choice for Spanish, German, Italian or French. If you have an existing Babbel subscription on your account, you can book your first free class right away.

Is Babbel just for beginners? ›

Babbel is both a language e-learning platform and a language learning app. It offers courses at newcomer, beginner I, beginner II, pre-intermediate, and intermediate levels.

What app is better than Babbel? ›

Duolingo offers over 20 languages, so you'll have over twice as many language options as Babbel. Compared to Babbel, Duolingo's main weakness is that it doesn't have example conversations. However, if full conversations aren't your thing, Duolingo may be an ideal alternative to Babbel.

How does Rosetta compare to Babbel? ›

In their teaching method, Babbel uses dialogues, whereas Rosetta Stone uses sentences. The audio quality on Rosetta Stone is much better than on Babbel. Babbel has a review manager feature where you can see the lessons you have learned previously, whereas Rosetta Stone does not have such a feature.

Who is Babbel target audience? ›

Audience composition can reveal a site's current market share across various audiences.'s audience is 52.71% male and 47.29% female. The largest age group of visitors are 25 - 34 year olds (Desktop).

Has anyone become fluent from Babbel? ›

You will most likely not become fluent with Babbel. It's a solid language app and can give you a strong foundation in your target language, but to achieve fluency, you'll need to use other resources. While it won't help you become fluent, Babbel can help you improve your language skills.

Which is better for becoming fluent Babbel or Duolingo? ›

The biggest difference between Babbel and Duolingo is the approach to language learning. Babbel is a better option if you want traditional language instructions through modules and lessons. By contrast, Duolingo works great if you need a playful, gamified experience.

Is Duolingo better than Babbel review? ›

Final Thoughts On Babbel Vs Duolingo

Babbel is harder for beginners and it might be better to use it after getting acquainted with the language. Compared to Duolingo it pushes students to write more than read and has a far more conversational approach, almost entirely teaching in the form of conversations.

Is Rosetta Stone actually good? ›

Is Rosetta Stone really worth it? Rosetta Stone is worth it if you're a beginner and want to immerse yourself in a new language. Rosetta Stone teaches you vocabulary using audio and images and it helps you actively practice the language. It's not really a good option for more intermediate or advanced learners though.

What level of fluency can Duolingo get you to? ›

At Duolingo, we're developing our courses to get you to a level called B2, at which you can get a job in the language you're studying. Reaching that kind of proficiency requires dedication, varied practice opportunities, and a lot of time.

What is the success rate of Duolingo? ›

The effectiveness measure showed that on average participants gained 8.1 points per one hour of study with Duolingo. The 95% Confidence Interval for the effectiveness is from 5.6 points to 10.7 points gained per one hour of study.

What is the best way to learn another language? ›

Top tips from experts to learn a language quickly
  1. Take risks and speak the language whenever you can.
  2. Read children's books and comic books in the foreign language.
  3. Consume foreign language media.
  4. Immerse yourself in the local culture.
  5. Make use of free foreign language podcasts and apps.
Mar 3, 2015

How many hours of Rosetta Stone to be fluent? ›

It takes the average learner 50 hours to complete a chosen language with the Rosetta Stone Library Solution. If you set aside five 30-minute sessions a week, the average learner would complete their learning in 20 weeks.

How long does Rosetta Stone take to be fluent? ›

How long does it take to master a level? Rosetta Stone states that it takes the average learner twenty weeks (or thirty minutes a day for five days a week) to master a level. Latin American Spanish, for example, has five levels. That means the average learner could complete all levels in less than two years.

Will Memrise make me fluent? ›

Since it is not a comprehensive language course, it doesn't teach all necessary skills that will make you fluent in a new language. It does help with some aspects, teaching tons of new vocabulary words which you use in conversation. But to become truly fluent, you'll need to use Memrise in addition to other resources.

Is Babbel better than Memrise? ›

Which language app/course is better, Memrise or Babbel? After testing the apps/lessons from both companies, our team thinks Babbel is the more effective language learning program. We like Memrise's program and give it high marks, but Babbel is slightly more well-rounded.


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