Inside my budget travel plan, learning the language of the country that I want to visit is a must. I have always love to challenge myself at some point.
Prior to this, one of my buddies has visited South Korea around December 2008. I have relentlessly advised her to study and practise Korean language; at least the Korean survival phrases. She claimed that it would be alright. I told her that it would be different if she travelled in English-speaking countries.
She regretted it..really. Not only she lost her way once she reached Incheon airport. All the hassle she went through to find her hotel has etched sour memories. Of course sour or sad memories if you think again it will become sweet as well, but all the troubles and waste of time?
Heheh..impossible to replace time though.
My advise: If you are in Rome, do what the Roman do.
*If not all, the least is to learn the language a bit, to show your interest. Little things go a long way*