What would you call a person or people who does not know your language in either of the scenario whether

you (as a tourist, as an expatriate or on business) are in their (as a citizen) homeland


they (as a tourist, as an expatriate or on business) are in your (as a citizen) homeland.

  • 1
    I’d use the term foreigner – Jim Apr 15 '18 at 6:19
  • I don't think there's a special name for people ("their" in your first example) who don't happen to know the language of some random other person ("you" in your first example). You'd be hard pressed to find anyone who understands every possible foreign language. – Lawrence Apr 15 '18 at 6:22
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    Is this just a complicated way of asking "what would you call someone who does not speak the same language as you" which would apply whatever context you were in ? I don't know a one word term for "person who doesn't speak my language from a country other than my own" -- but it might help others if that's what you are looking for – Tom22 Apr 15 '18 at 6:28
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    @Jim lots of foreigners DO speak your langauge – Tom22 Apr 15 '18 at 6:29
  • Bit shorter might be "language barrier" is a euphemism for "we couldn't speak each other's language nor did we have another language we shared to speak in." – Tom22 Apr 15 '18 at 6:33

I'm sure there are specific epithets that could be used with some specific countries and with some specific circumstances, but in general:

First scenario - general "a Native (local)" - or probably refer to them by the country one is in (i.e. French, German, Korean etc.).

Second scenario - general "Foreign (visitor)" - not knowing circumstances. Or by the perceived origin of whatever language you thinks they do speak.

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