Urdu is a language spoken by an estimated 100 million people in mainly Muslim communities in Pakistan, India, the UK, Bangladesh, and Nepal.
Though systematic and orderly in word construction and sentence structure, Urdu is written from right to left. This can prove challenging to many who are used to a left to right system. There are informal and formal verbs, and nouns are either masculine or feminine. Similarly to English, it has an array of words with irregular spellings with no real pattern.
This means that Urdu and Hindi speakers can understand conversation, but not written bits. In order to master this somewhat challenging language, a comprehensive language learning program is essential. Read on for our review of UrduPod101.
UrduPod101 Review Summary
Signing up for UrduPod101 is as simple as entering your email address and making up a password. Once you do, you have access to UrduPod101 for free for seven days and a free lifetime account. This grants you access to:
- On-the-go video and audio lessons
- Mobile Applications
- Vocabulary learning tools like flashcards and word-of-the-day
- Core Urdu word lists and phrase lists
Should you choose to further your learning, you can upgrade to any of three monthly subscription packages. These subscriptions allow access to UrduPod101’s extensive library of thousands of lessons, daily mini-lessons delivered to your email, tips on quickly mastering Urdu, and even one-on-one instruction.
What We Liked About UrduPod101
As you can see from the review summary, we recommend this course. Here are 3 reasons we liked it:
What We Didn’t Like About UrduPod101
All that said, the program isn’t perfect. Here are a few things that we didn’t love about it:
What are the lessons like?
The lessons are built in a way that helps you to easily and quickly pick up the language. They are available via video, podcast, interactive tools and quizzes.
Not only are the lessons engaging and entertaining, but they also provide you with bits of culture surrounding the Urdu language. This gives you a well-rounded experience in learning the language.
There are four levels to choose from including Absolute Beginner, Beginner, Intermediate and Advanced. Absolute Beginner will start you out with pronunciation practice and lead you up to basic introductions, thank you, you’re welcome and hello. Progressing through the levels increases your knowledge and fluency.
Once you have reached the Advanced level, lessons will shift into learning more about Muslim culture, Pakistan government, and traditions.
Who Is UrduPod101 Good For?
In our opinion, UrduPod101 is a great option to learn Urdu for those who:
- want to quickly and efficiently learn to speak Urdu
- plan to expand their business to Pakistan or other Urdu-speaking areas
- have Urdu-speaking friends, partners or spouses
- thrive with independent study and are highly motivated
Who Shouldn’t Buy UrduPod101?
Language learning programs are rarely one-size-fits-all. Though we think most will benefit from UrduPod101, those who may struggle include those who:
- learn best in a classroom
- are not self-motivated
- need additional instruction
- are on a very tight budget
UrduPod101 vs. Competition
We were hard pressed to find much in the way of a comprehensive Urdu courses online. There are loads of YouTube videos claiming to teach you to speak Urdu as you drive or otherwise listen in. However, we could not verify whether these videos were made by certified language teachers or not. Youtube and free podcasts can be a good option to test the waters in a new language, but we recommend a structured course for serious language learning.
There were multiple free websites like ilanguages.org that offer loads of phrases and vocabulary words. Some sites even allow you to hear how the word or phrase is pronounced. Though this type of tool is useful in conjunction with a comprehensive Urdu course or if you simply need to quickly find the words to ask something in Urdu, it will not build a foundation to learn a language.
UrduPod101 vs. Mangolanguages.com
One of the few competitors we found was mangolanguages.com.
These lessons focus on salutations, food, drink, transportation, money and compliments. The goals of these lessons are to be able to speak conversationally with others in Urdu.
Grammar goals of these lessons include being introduced to nouns, verbs and adjectives and to learn sentence structure.
To advance beyond a beginner level, you will need to find another course.
Is it Worth the Money?
The short answer is: Yes. For those who are serious about mastering the Urdu language, we think UrduPod101 is worth the money.
When you consider costs associated with taking a university course in Urdu, UrduPod101’s PremiumPlus option (which includes a tutor) represents very good value.
If you’re unsure, they offer a 7-day free trial.
Exclusive 30% Off Coupon Code For Our Readers
It’s no secret that we’re big fans of the Pod101 courses. I’ve been using them for years, and some of our other writers have become converts when testing the courses for reviews.
We approached the makers of UrduPod101 and they offered our readers an exclusive 30% discount if you sign up through this link:
Final Thoughts on UrduPod101
UrduPod101 is one of the very few in-depth courses available to learn Urdu on your own time. Aside from private instruction or a university level course, you will not find a better independent study course online. Though it is a bit pricey, we think it’s worth the money for serious students.
You will have access to the most extensive Urdu lesson library we could find and can learn at your own pace.