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Want to Learn Cantonese? How Long Does It Take?

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Have you recently shifted to Hong Kong? Then you have to learn Cantonese to interact with the people. Cantonese is the most widely known and influential Chinese language group after Mandarin. But many people still sustain a negative thought that this language is hard to learn.

It’s actually a tonal language based on thousands of Chinese characters. And if you enrol your name in a reliable language learning centre for Cantonese class and learn dedicatedly, it doesn’t take prolonged time. But how long does it take?

Well, we have given this answer based on three levels of Cantonese proficiency - beginner, intermediate, and advanced. But before we discuss it, let’s know the factors that impact learning.

The Factors Involved in Cantonese Learning

Cantonese Vs the Language You Know

Cantonese is different from other languages. As stated above, this tonal language contains thousands of characters. Each one carries a sound and a meaning. But if you know Mandarin, the chance is high that you will pick this language up much faster.


How much effort and time you want to spend makes a huge difference. Want to learn Cantonese as you have been posted in Hong Kong? And you have to stay here for years! Having a strong reason will lead you to strive achieving and overcome hurdles.

Your Age

Your age also matters when it comes to learning a new language. If you are young, it’s easier to memorize new words and rules.

Now, let’s move on to the time taken to learn Cantonese.

How Long It Needs to Learn Cantonese

Beginner Level

At the beginner level, the learner should be able to conduct simple conversations, such as self-introduction, ordering food, asking for direction, etc. And to achieve this level, spend at least one hour per day studying. It takes almost two-three months.

Intermediate Level

At this stage, you should be able to use different sentence patterns, articulate complex thoughts, pronounce words accurately and talk to locals. Your reading and writing skills may still be limited. But you should be familiar with jyutping works. However, it might take almost six months to take you to reach intermediate-level Cantonese.

Advanced Level

The advanced learners can give fluent speeches and converse with locals easily. And at this level, you should recognize at least 2000 to 3000 Chinese characters. But how long does it take to learn Cantonese at this level? It requires more than six months.

Want to enrol your name in a language learning centre? Look at our course schedule! We provide 1-to-1 classes for Cantonese and Mandarin courses. You can also join our group lessons or online training program. We never charge extra. Keep reading our other blogs to know more about us!


Cantonese course, Mandarin Course, Online course

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