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No I'm not fluent in the language but…

Something I've seen in lots of BootsnAll stories is people saying they know a little of a foreign language, try it out on a local, and the next thing they know the local thinks they’re fluent and is speaking away, leaving the traveler in the dust.

I’m not yet fluent in any foreign language. I intend to learn a few things before I go, but I’m thinking that a way to diffuse this lingual confusion is to try to preface what I say with something like
“Sorry, my French/Spanish/Finnish is very bad, but…”
Maybe that’ll help?