April is TEFL month at Cactus

Throughout April we will aim to answer all your TEFL questions, such as:

“What is the difference between TEFL, CELTA and TESOL?”

“Is a 4-week TEFL course as intensive as everyone says?”

“How do you know which TEFL course is best for you?”

We will be posting a series of videos discussing and answering the most common TEFL questions. So make sure you’re a fan or following us and don’t miss out!



For transcripts of the videos and even more TEFL related questions, as well as information on thousands of courses around the world visit www.cactustefl.com.

New Language Courses in Canary Wharf

From April Cactus will be offering its popular 10-week evening language courses in City Harbour, only 2 minutes from Crossharbour DLR station and 10 minutes from Canary Wharf.  View map & school details…

With one 2-hour class per week, from 6.30 to 8.30pm, you can easily learn a language after work. Get started now and you could be speaking a new language in time for this summer, by the end of June to be precise.

Language courses available in Canary Wharf include Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), English, French, German, Italian, Japanese and Spanish. Courses start from £205 including book and are taught by experienced teachers in small interactive, sociable groups. They run on different nights of the week and start quarterly form 17th April. Book early and you can get £10 off!

“Good value for money and good teachers…” Jody, Spanish student

“I really noticed a continuous improvement week after week.” Rudiger, Spanish student

To find out more visit www.languagecoursesuk.co.uk or call 0845 130 4775.

For previous Canary Wharf students, this move will affect only the location of their course. All other course details, e.g. days and times, remain unchanged.

Why are the Canary Wharf courses moving?

We have appointed a new centre in Canary Wharf, based on feedback received from our students.

During each course we ask for your comments via questionnaires. Your input actively shapes not only the course you are on, but our future course offering.

We would like to thank everyone who submitted feedback or took part in our survey for helping to continuously improve our courses.

Cactus has 17 training locations across London, including Baker Street, Bond Street, Canary Wharf, Clapham, Gloucester Road, Greenwich, Highgate, Holborn-Russell Square, Islington, Kings Cross, Notting Hill, Oxford Circus, Piccadilly Circus, Shepherds Bush, Soho, Victoria and Wimbledon.

How to Choose Your Study Abroad Program

When choosing to study abroad there are many things that go through your head – is it worth it? Will I really learn the language? Can I get enough course credit? All these questions and anxieties are completely normal and ultimately important to your decision making.

The first thing you should do if you are looking to study abroad outside of your home University program is to meet with your school advisor about what you want to do and what you want to achieve. The most important part of your education abroad is that you are rewarded not only in the experience but for the work you did while you were there.

Every University has a different list of criteria for issuing US credit for the courses you take abroad, so before booking a course you should always consult with your advisor on how many hours you’ll need to complete and what type of courses you’ll need to take to not only get the experience you want but the course credit you need.

By confirming the amount of hours you need to complete and having a detailed list of the documents you need from the institution aboard to submit to your home University, you will be well on your way to making your study abroad experience happen. Having this information at the beginning of your search will help you determine which program in which location is the best for you and allow you to make the best decision more efficiently.

Once you have that information, it comes down to how much time you can commit to studying abroad and how many credits you ultimately want to receive. Do you have a week, a summer, or a whole semester? Do you need 12 credits or just 3? Here’s a breakdown of types of study abroad programs and what will work best according to your goals:

Winter and Spring Break

If you want to make the most of the few weeks you have off for winter or spring break there are plenty of options around the globe. The best option for this short period of time would be an Intensive Language Course or a Combined Language Course. These courses are 30 lessons (25-30 hours) per week and focus on advancing your language skills as quickly as possible in the short amount of time that you are there. The standard rule is that 45 contact hours equals 3 credits, so take 2 weeks of the Intensive or Combined course and there’s a solid chance your University will issue you the credits for your time abroad


Doing a study abroad program in the summer is a great way to make sure you take enough hours of a course to gain the credit you need while still allowing you a varied amount of programs to choose from. You can take a Spanish and Mayan History Course in Merida, a Language and Culture course in Paris or Aix, a German and Music course in Vienna, or a Japanese and Traditional Culture course in Fukuoka, Japan. These courses will not only advance your language skills in a short time period but give you extra elements to the course to provide your home university with good reason for issuing you more course credits.


If you’re going abroad for an entire semester, it’s most important that you focus on a program that offers you variety to allow you to get the most credits for your time abroad. The reality is that if you’re looking for a whole semester of credit, taking just a language course won’t be enough. Focus on the programs that offer language courses as well as cultural courses so you can get a well rounded academic semester. A good example of this is the semester program in Malaga, which offers a Spanish course as well as courses on Spanish history, literature, economy, and media. Taking this type of program will not only make your time more enjoyable, but will make it much easier to transfer credit upon your return when you are able to present varied course syllabi and assignments for approval.

Ultimately, the options are endless, but the more organized you are about your goals with study abroad, the more likely you are to gain the credit you need and make the most out of the experience.

Still need advice? Feel free to contact us for information on possibilities and programs.

Show some love this Valentine’s Day with our special date and gift ideas

Why not treat your Valentine to an experience they won’t forget this February?  Instead of the usual clichéd hearts and flowers, surprise your loved one with Cactus lessons in the language of love!

For all Francophiles, Cactus is offering special “French Tuesdays” in partnership with Cafe Rouge.  It’s a chance to learn the basics or brush-up old skills, while enjoying delicious contemporary French cuisine.  The sessions are available every Tuesday from 6.30pm-8.30pm at locations in Hampstead, Knightsbridge, Leicester Square, Wimbledon and Brighton, until 21 February 2012.  To book your place, simply visit https://www.cactuslanguagetraining.com/caferouge/

Or Cactus’ language gift vouchers make the perfect gift for all language lovers.  Available in multiples of £10, they can be redeemed against any Cactus products.  So if you want to whisk away your partner to romantic Rome for a language holiday to learn Italian, or simply fancy learning together with one of our many evening courses, there’s sure to be an option to spark your passion.  Visit https://www.cactuslanguagetraining.com/en/promotion/gift-voucher

Goodtoknow - January 2012

Win! A Cactus language course

If you’ve always wanted to speak Spanish, French, Italian or German, now you can with our Cactus Language Training competition.

We’ve teamed up with Cactus Language Training to offer to 1 goodtoknow user and a friend, a 10-week evening language course in either Spanish, French, Italian or German at a local learning centre.

What better way to kick-start 2012 than by making a resolution to learn a new language?

You’ll be taught the 4 key areas of speaking, reading, writing and listening, with help from Cactus’ friendly and highly-qualified teachers. And with a choice of 12 language levels and over 40 locations around the UK, there is sure to be a course to suit everyone.

Every year Cactus helps more than 15,000 people learn over 30 languages in 60 countries and at 500 destinations worldwide.

To find out more about all our courses visit cactuslanguagetraining.com


AllNY.com - 30 December 2011

Still deciding on a New Year’s resolution? How about learning a new language, or brushing up on one that you might have studied a millennium ago in high school? Cactus Language in New York City is offering fast track five- and ten-week language courses in a variety of foreign languages, including Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), French, German, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Portuguese, Polish, Russian, Serbian, Spanish and Turkish. In less than two months, you’ll have gained a basic understanding of a language of your choice, and you will have successfully followed through on your New Year’s resolution, a double benefit.

As a traveler and restaurant writer, I’ve found that Cactus Language courses are perfect preparation for traveling abroad as you’ll acquire the skills necessary to communicate with locals in the various countries around the world. The classes are small so you can make yourself heard. It’s definitely much better than trying to learn a language from a computer with Rosetta Stone, or reading a Berlitz guidebook while you’re on the elliptical machine.  I’m always looking for tips about where to eat or what to see when I travel, and chatting with the locals is one of the best sources for those “hidden gems” you’ll never find in a guidebook.

I’m pretty advanced in certain languages, so I appreciate having the opportunity that Cactus affords to select advanced or beginner classes.  I love chatting away in French or Spanish with others who have significant fluency in the language as well as struggling as much as anyone else to master the complexities of Mandarin in a beginner class.

The relatively small time commitment of a Cactus language course compared to the end results of foreign language proficiency make these classes a ‘must’ for anyone looking to quickly learn a new language in a short time span. Classes are suitable for all levels and meet for two hours either once or twice per week for a total of 20 hours.  It’s social, there’s wine and chips on the first night to set the mood, and it’s a wonderfully challenging learning expereince

If you’re looking for a short-term program or need a condensed language brush-up, then the Five-Week Fast Track Program is ideal. Twice-weekly classes begin January 23 6:15-8:15pm. in French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish.

The Ten-Week Program is available in Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), French, German, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Serbian, Spanish and Turkish. Classes start January 11, 17 or 23; or February 2, depending on the language selected, meeting once per week from 6:15-8:15pm. This program is great if you have a longer period of time to study.

https://www.cactuslanguagecourses.com; 330 5th Avenue (at 32nd St.); 1-888-577-8451


Billion Dollar Marketer - 22 December 2011

People who learn Spanish in Mexico can convention their new language skills in everyday life situations. Mexico offers heavenly beaches and being at its best. You can visit the hulk of the ancient Aztec and Mayan civilizations. You can enjoy the civilization and the food of Mexico, while you are learning the Spanish language.

Language Immersion Courses are Effective

Language absorption courses are considered to be the best way of learning a second language. Spanish absorption courses require you to communicate only in Spanish. Teachers discourage conversation in English, or any additional language. You learn Spanish by in fact using it to communicate, prefer than by studying it.

You can learn Spanish abruptly by joining a Spanish absorption bearing in a country anyplace Spanish is spoken. Mexico is one of the more catchy destinations in Latin America, anyplace citizen´s like to go to learn Spanish. You can look forward to glimpse seeing, cultural activities, weekend excursions and much more. You can even experience alive with a Mexican family.

Choosing a Spanish School in Mexico

If you want, you can learn Spanish in Mexico, you can consider the Spanish absorption schools, promoted by AmeriSpan. AmeriSpan was formed in 1993 and it has served more than 25,000 clients, since then. You can join a Spanish absorption school in Cancun, on the Southeastern tip of the Yucatan Peninsula. It has miles of hoary sandy beaches and is surrounded by the warm waters of the Caribbean.

You can also join a Spanish absorption bearing in Cuernavaca, Guanajuato, Merida, Morelia, Oaxaca and San Miguel de Allende. Specialized Spanish absorption courses are also available, for citizen´s who want to learn Spanish in Mexico. AmeriSpan offers you courses with curbed groups of learners and you can choose to stay in a private room, or with a host family.

To learn Spanish in Mexico, you can consider the Spanish courses available by Cactus Language. Cactus was formed in 1998, in the UK, and it offers language courses in 25 languages. It has some 150 destinations in 45 countries. Cactus has acquaintances with Spanish schools in Mexico City, Morelia, Oaxaca, Cuernavaca, Guanajuato, Playa del Carmen and Puerto Vallarta.

Choose a Spanish school which borders the enumerate of learners in each class. All Spanish schools may not afford you a college credit. Keep your objectives and budget in mind when you are deciding on a Spanish school. Seriously consider the language absorption approach. It is one of the most abrupt ways to learn the Spanish language.


Going Places Near and Far - 21 December 2011

Cactus Language Training Offers Fast Track to Fluency With Sessions in NYC

December 21, 2011

Cactus Language Training invites New Yorkers to learn or improve a foreign language in less than two months with their new five-week and ten-week evening programs.  Beginning this January, 20-hour programs in 12 languages will be held at 330 Fifth Avenue at 32nd Street, Manhattan.  Two-hour classes are designed to quickly build language skills and communication confidence.  A small class size (maximum 12 students) and complimentary wine and chips on the first night create a relaxed environment for fostering language learning. Inclusive of course materials, tuition for both programs ranges from $299 to $329, depending on the language chosen. Start dates for the programs depend on length of program, language selected, and class level.

Five-Week Fast-Track Programs – New York City, starting January 23, 2012

Comprising 20 hours of instruction, Cactus’s five-week Fast-Track programs begin January 23, meeting Mondays and Wednesdays, 6:15 – 8:15 pm. Fast-Track programs are offered in French, German, Italian, Portuguese and Spanish, in beginner as well as more advanced levels, depending on the language selected. Each class session is two hours.

Ten-Week Programs – New York City, starting January 11, 2012

Also including 20 hours of instruction, Cactus’s ten-week programs begin January 11, 17, or 23; or February 2 with one two-hour class per week, from 6:15 – 8:15 pm.  Classes are offered in Arabic, Chinese (Mandarin), French, German, Hebrew, Hindi, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Serbian, Spanish and Turkish.  Beginner as well as more advanced levels are available, depending on the language selected.

For more information and to register, visit https://www.cactuslanguagecourses.com or call 1-888-577-8451.

Founded in 1998, with headquarters in New York and the UK, Cactus’s expert team delivers quality language training to individuals and businesses.  Cactus helps more than 15,000 people every year learn more than 30 languages, in 60 countries and at 500 destinations worldwide. In addition to evening and part-time group language classes, Cactus offers language vacations for both adults and children. mixing classes with tours and activities (such as dance, yoga, wine tasting, cooking, music, art, diving, surfing and photography); cultural awareness training; and full-immersion language holidays.  https://www.cactuslanguagetraining.com/us 1-888-577-8451.


Jetsetter - December 2011

New destinations, plus special offers ranging from free weeks in France to bonus cultural lessons in Spain, await aspiring linguists


In the same way that authors such as Colin Thurbron, Peter Mayle and Elizabeth Gilbert have won legions of fans by capturing the true spirit of culturally authentic travel experiences, the most passionate travelers long to immerse themselves fully in their chosen destinations. This is the core of Cactus Language Training’s philosophy. One of the world’s leading language training companies, Cactus teaches more than 30 languages in 60 countries at 500 destinations worldwide, each year adding new destinations, immersive cultural opportunities and enticing incentives that enhance the process of learning a new language through culturally enriching vacation experiences. With an emphasis on affordability and authenticity, Cactus’s new vacation programs in 2011 include learning Spanish and Latin Dance in Leticia, Colombia at a school on the banks of the Amazon; studying German in the low-key, less touristy Bavarian town of Lindau overlooking the Swiss Alps; and mastering Russian in culturally diverse Kiev, Ukraine near Belarus.

The new Colombia location is one of 70 destinations in which Cactus offers Spanish language instruction; others include Argentina, Costa Rica, and two in Spain. Likewise, those who seek to speak French fluently can choose among 26 destinations, including coastal Biarritz, Bordeaux, and Monaco in France; or Montreal, Canada. If ease with Italian is the goal, Cactus offers 22 locations across Italy. Thai, Turkish and Brazilian Portuguese (the current passion of Cactus founder Rich Ambler) are among the 30 languages offered by Cactus.

Incentives and Special Offers – all prices for all Cactus programs are guaranteed in US dollars.

A variety of appealing incentives are available for aspiring linguists, including:

• A free week with the purchase of a two-week French language program in Nice (for programs through May 30), starting at $682 for a 3-week course;

• Five free cultural lessons with the purchase of a Spanish language program in Madrid (plus a discounted rate for programs over 12 weeks in length), starting at $284 for a course-only.

• A free excursion to the glass-blowing island of Murano with the purchase of an Italian language program in Venice, starting at $312 for a course-only. Available throughout the year.

Cactus believes that “one size does not fit all” and tailors its broad range of programs to fit the individual needs of the learner. Adding a further dimension to its in situ programs, Cactus incorporates cultural experiences, ranging from wine tasting and cooking to dance and diving, to strengthen and reinforce the day’s language lessons. Cactus also offers courses for children, teenagers, families and mature travelers, as well as executives.

About Cactus Language Training and Language Vacations

Cactus is one of the world’s leading language training companies. Founded in 1998, with headquarters in New York and the UK, Cactus’s expert team delivers quality language training to individuals and businesses. Cactus helps over 15,000 people every year learn more than 30 languages, in 60 countries and at 500 destinations worldwide.

Programs include language vacations for both adults and children, comprised of classes mixed with tours and activities (such as dance, yoga, wine tasting, cooking, music, art, diving, surfing and photography); cultural awareness training; and full-immersion language holidays. For those unable to travel, evening and part-time group language courses are also offered. https://www.cactuslanguagetraining.com/us 1-888-577-8451 Twitter: @cactuslanguage Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/cactuslanguagetraining

Cactus announces winner of Spanish Facebook competition!

Cactus is delighted to announce that Chris Parker is the lucky winner of our hugely popular Spanish Facebook competition.  Selected at random from 1,000 entries, Chris will be jetting-off with a friend for a fantastic two-week break at the prestigious Malaca Instituto in Malaga next year.

Our language holidays offer the perfect opportunity for students to completely immerse themselves in their chosen language and culture.  Chris will take Spanish classes in the mornings and then be free to explore the sights and sounds of the city in the afternoons, putting his new skills into practice.  For more information on the course, simply visit https://www.cactuslanguage.com/en/book/course.php?course_id=81

Well done Chris – and watch this space for more competitions!