Last updated: 01:00 AM ET, Wed April 20 2016

Now You Can Wear The Power Of Translation

Travel Technology | Gabe Zaldivar | April 20, 2016

Now You Can Wear The Power Of Translation

Image via Facebook

When traveling in a foreign country, it’s difficult to explain to locals what you mean. The good thing is that it’s now easier to merely show them.

Iconspeak is a bit of low-tech that may just go a long way to offering travelers the ease of basic communication all in the form of a stylish t-shirt.

The realization of its use will hit you the moment you land at its website, confronted with a bunch of clothes that look like little more than something you might find at a souvenir shop.

Ah, but there is so much more.

The original World Edition shirt bears 39 little icons including an Iconspeak logo that sits adorably in the center.

It’s surrounded by useful images that may just speak volumes the second you point at them. With the gesture of a finger you relay that you are in need of water, lodging or a decent meal.

In an instant you can discover whether that tap you are about to drink from is safe or not:

An Iconspeak founder relays a touching story of a downed motorbike and some rather confusing subsequent repairs being done when traveling in Vietnam.

The blog entry explains the impetus behind the t-shirt: “Many times we were confronted with a language barrier that was only to be overcome by drawing signs, symbols or icons on a piece of paper, map, or into the dirt. We thought it would be great to have an essential set of icons with you, permanently, so that you could just point on whatever you need - and people would understand.”

And with various combinations, you now have a basis for basic understanding:



Our first most obvious advice for world travelers is to immerse yourself in the language prior to departure.

A few words here and there will go a long way with locals who might appreciate the effort.

With that said, it’s near impossible to master a language or get close to conversational with limited time.

Now you have clothing that can do a bit of the heavy lifting, which may just save you the embarrassment of a horrible experience due to classic language barriers.


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