Breaking the language barrier: Top European countries for English speakers

Breaking the language barrier: Top European countries for English speakers.

Breaking the language barrier: Top European countries for English speakers. Image: pathdoc /

For English speakers considering a move to Europe, prioritising countries where English is widely spoken can alleviate concerns about language barriers.

According to the English Proficiency Index released by Education First (EF), several European countries excel in English proficiency.

In a study conducted by the European Commission, it was found that 62 per cent of surveyed Brits couldn’t speak a second language, highlighting the challenges faced by native English speakers in learning foreign languages. Similarly, an InterNations study identified the language barrier as a significant concern among expatriates.

EF’s English Proficiency Index, which analyzed the English test results of 2 million individuals worldwide, including from 35 European countries, provides insights into the top countries in Europe for English speakers. Each country received a ranking out of 800 points.

Northern European countries dominate the rankings, with Croatia making it to the 10th spot.

Finland, Sweden, and Denmark secure the 9th, 8th, and 3rd positions, respectively.

Austria claims the 2nd spot, scoring 641 points out of 800.

However, the Netherlands clinches the top spot, boasting a high percentage of Dutch citizens proficient in English.

On the other hand, Italy ranked lowest among European countries in terms of English proficiency.

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Written by

Anna Ellis

Originally from Derbyshire, Anna has lived in the middle of nowhere on the Costa Blanca for 19 years. She is passionate about her animal family including four dogs and four horses, musicals and cooking.