Gadling giveaway: Me No Speak guides

You know those handy Me No Speak guides that I mentioned a few days ago? The ones that are stripped down to the basics of an illustration and translation, so you can just point to get by in a pinch when you don’t have a common language.

We have a few on hand that we’re giving away.

Enter our giveaway to win a Me No Speak guide for your next trip. The three grand prize winners will be able to select one guide of their choice–China, Japan, or Thailand.

To enter the contest for the chance to win a Me No Speak guide:

  • Simply leave a comment below telling us which guide you’d want if you won: China, Japan, or Thailand.
  • The comment must be left before Monday, March 30 at 5:00 PM Eastern Time.
  • You may enter only once.
  • Three winners will be selected in a random drawing.
  • These three random winners will each receive a Me No Speak guide of their choice (valued at $9.95).
  • Click here for complete Official Rules.
  • Open to legal residents of the 50 United States, including the District of Columbia who are 18 and older.

Language barrier be gone: guide makes it a point…to point

Chances are, you’ve been there–that awkward moment in another country when you don’t speak the local language, and the person across from you doesn’t speak English. Try as you might with a smile and game of charades, you’re at an impasse. Game over.

Or else, maybe you tried one last attempt: drawing it. That’s the premise behind Me No Speak.

The mini-guide takes the words most likely to come out of a traveler’s mouth, and puts them in illustration and writing–both English and the local language (Chinese, Japanese, or Thai). That way, the only thing you have to do is point.

Without pronunciation keys, and the urge to wade through rounds of trial and error in speaking the language, you cut to the chase. That’s not to say that you shouldn’t try learning or practicing a language, but this guide is more for emergencies–the first thing that comes to mind is ordering at a restaurant or finding the nearest toilet. But it’s been said to be useful for everything from reporting a stolen camera to police to getting a leaky shower fixed in a hotel bathroom.

The passport-sized guides are divided into color-coded sections: general help, food, transportation, accommodation, shopping, and health & safety. They’re largely sold on the Me No Speak website ($9.95), but also at a few retailers such as Flight 001.

Word is, they’re working on iPhone applications as well, starting with their China guide. Other guides that are coming down the pike are for Korea and Turkey.