How long would I become fluent in Polish?

Look I started Learning this by September or October of 2017 I took me 1 month to finish I finished in November now I’m learning the colors who many months or years would I become fluent in Polish and that’s my second course I finished first was French.

This is a very difficult question to answer!

First of all, you need to define what your understanding of ‘fluent’ is.

What is your definition of ‘fluent’?

Besides what Amanda said, it also depends on what languages you currently know. A Spanish speaking person needs less time to become fluent French than a Korean person.

I’m currently studying Japanese and feel like I need about 3 years to reach a tangible degree of fluency. But that can increase and decrease depending on my study time.

Adding to the question, I think it’s a matter of how you are going about this.
I recently found a website with what it claims are the 1000 most commonly used words in Polish, and I’m planning on making flashcards to capture their conjugations and declensions. My point is that I think the best way to go about this is to learn the most commonly used phrases and vocabulary, and the basic grammar. Then you’ll be proficient, and I think you’ll become fluent within a few months after that, at least if you’re diligent, and can find Polish speakers who are willing to help you learn.

Hi Bryan,

fluent in what? Speaking?

Sorry, I do not really understand what exactly you have finished in just one month.
Official Polish 1-7?
What about 3000-5000 words vocabulary courses?

Are you typing on a smartphone? Where are all the “dots” in your small paragraph?

  • What is your native language?
  • Can you immerse with native speakers in the country?
  • What is your previous language learning experience?
  • How do you “study”? Where do you learn grammar? Book? DuoLIngo?

FSI lists Polish in the medium 1100 classroom hours table for English native speakers to reach proficiency.

I started with Portuguese (Brazil) in October 2016 - rated as an EASY language like Spanish/French - for native English speakers and I do not find it too easy with all the grammar (verb tense conjugations, Subjunctive) and for sure I am not yet well-trained in speaking and writing writing; even reading more complex texts (longer sentences, paragraphs,…) quickly show me my limits.

So not fluent at all (this all depends on the resources you are using and how and with whom you learn).

Q: How “fluent” are you in French? :wink:

If you stick to only self-learning - without any teacher drills or classroom conversations or italki teacher lessons - you may have to additionally add your personal factor to those listed numbers (maybe x2 or x3)?

For me as a German native speaker, it surely would take YEARS to learn any Slavic language with a grammar which is even rated more difficult than Romance languages.

For PT BR it probably will be more likely like 3-5+ years for me, as a bit more than 1,5 years have already passed.

Will I ever reach the same (higher) level - at least in reading and writing - as with English, which I have been learning as my second language more than 23 years? You guess! :wink:


As a native Polish speaker, I would dare to say that this language is difficult. Grammar is one of the hardest around. I have a friend from Asia and after 7 years in Poland, when she daily speaks Polish, she has constant troubles with words and cases - but she speaks quite well, generally.
If you want to speak better than “I are Robert” then you must use language daily. Compared to English, Polish is very rich language. That what can be said in English in one sentence, often in Polish requires two.

I tried to learn Dutch and German, as a native Slav, it goes painfully. My Dutch is on B2-C1 level, while German sucks deep balls. Really. The pronounce of this language is aggressive, they have cases and ridiculously loooooooong unreadable words.

English is the best :smiley: I mean an American English (speak), the British accent makes my ears to bleed.

I think it’s also a difference of perspective. For an Asian, languages like Polish are probably category 4 or even 5 languages, the pronunciation is especially notorious and asian people are known for mistaking L for R. Throw a Ł in there and you’ll start to see why it took her so long.

But for someone who is acquainted with English and all its funny spellings and grammar rules, Polish is probably an easier language to deal with. I’d say 3 years, with enough dedication and heavy daily practice 3 years is more than enough to get fluent in most languages (aside from Mandarin, Japanese, etc…)

Imagine. Hearing Poles here in the UK speaking English makes my ears bleed. Perhaps if they feigned an American accent they might sound better.

That’s an odd way of putting it (and I’m studying Polish, although not as intensely as I’m studying Spanish). Wouldn’t Polish be richer because of a greater economy of words (what I expected because of all the inflections)? Or is there something I’m deeply misunderstanding?

Just out of curiosity: are you a native speaker of English or a non-native?

Non-natives - including myself, living as a Brit in Germany - can sometimes be more intolerant towards other non-natives than local native speakers. I have always wondered why this is.

I have no problems whatsoever hearing Germans speak English with an accent, but sometimes find it difficult to hear my fellow native speakers of English speaking German with a noticeable accent or making grammatical mistakes.

But I have no clue why I have this problem! Or why it is a common reaction.

Unfortunately a lot of Polish people in UK are low skilled job seekers. They do not put much effort to get better oral effect. Personally, since I began my journey with English, I chose American accent. It sounds much more natural, smooth and plausible, while British I imagine like talking with a pin (peg) in throat. And yes, I think people should try to learn American English way of speaking, comes easier for learners I think.

I may have put bad words for it. You are also right - Polish stock for words is bigger compared to English in daily practice (according to my observations). Long time ago I (among others) was translator of English games and it was really hard to translate sentences, words because English could cut the meaning up to one-two word sentence, while in Polish it would sound very odd So it was often needed to write whole sentence which had problems to fit inside game’s interface.

As I learn German and Dutch, for me the most problematic is word-order. In Polish it basically doesn’t exist, in English is piece of cake, while in Dutch it has to be almost always as rules say. I am on B2-C1 level but still struggle with long sentences in Dutch because using some words, will change word-order of the rest sentence. When you speak, this comes hard to remember.
Same in German, while here I also can’t stand unreadable long words. I don’t know what kind of masochist got idea to link words together.

It looks like I misunderstood then. I suppose English can be a bit weird about what you could leave unsaid, and what parts of speech are necessary. At least, that’s comparing it to Spanish, where articles and prepositions appear to be mandatory almost everywhere (although I know Polish doesn’t use articles)… Chinese is apparently similar, except, from what I’ve read, it takes this even further. Maybe that’s a consequence of being an analytical language, rather than a synthetic one?

Aby mówić płynnie w języku obcym (tudzież polskim) należy go regularnie używać, nie bać się popełniać błędy i ćwiczyć gramatykę oraz nowe słownictwo. Powodzenia! Być może nawet po 1 roku będziesz w stanie dobrze porozumieć się z użytkownikami tego języka.