Excellent tool to improve communication skills
Rocket Languages is a language app that teaches you to communicate naturally. It stands out from other apps because it includes both language and culture lessons, as well as a survival kit to master the basics fast. It offers a lot of high-quality resources to enhance what you learn in the core lessons, too. Overall, it’s one of the best language apps available, especially for popular languages like Spanish and French.
- Lessons are 15-40 minutes and teach useful topics
- The course focuses on communication and not memorization
- Practice and review words effectively
- A lot of additional learning resources available
- The courses use a lot of English
- Less popular languages don’t have complete courses
- No speech recognition technology
Spanish, French, Italian, German, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Russian, Arabic, Hindi, Portuguese, American Sign Language (ASL), English
Table of Contents
Rocket Languages Overview
I love reviewing language apps to find the best ones that actually help you learn a language. In fact, that’s what Langoly is all about. Choosing which language apps to use is a big decision, and using the wrong ones just wastes your precious study time.
In this Rocket Languages review, I tell you everything you need to know about the app, including its features, what languages it offers, and the price breakdown. After reading, you’ll easily be able to decide if Rocket Languages is a good fit for you.
Overall, Rocket Languages courses are easy to follow and the order of the lessons is logical. They’re good if you want a lot of practice using the language, and the lesson topics are useful for navigating everyday situations. The main drawbacks of Rocket Languages are that the lessons can start to feel repetitive after a while. They also use a lot of English, even in the more advanced levels.
Because it has been around for so long (since 2004), Rocket Languages has developed a lot of features for its language courses. While the quality of the courses varies by language, these are the main features available for all Rocket Languages courses.
The main focus of Rocket Languages is to help you become conversational quickly. Because of this, the courses use audio lessons to help you start speaking from the very beginning. The lessons are usually between 15 and 40 minutes, so they’re pretty manageable and won’t overwhelm you with too much information.
You can stream them directly in the app or download them to practice offline. Every lesson revolves around one complete conversation about a different topic. As the lesson progresses, it asks you to speak out loud and answer in the language you’re learning.
The conversations in the audio lessons usually take place between two people. After you listen to the full conversation, you can use Play It! to play the role of one of the people. For example, if the audio lesson includes a conversation between Juan and Maria, you can choose to play the role of either Juan or Maria in Play It!.
This is a good way to ease into the language, but it does have its limitations. Since you follow a script, it’s not exactly like talking to someone in the street. Still, it’s helpful to mimic real-life conversations you’ll encounter as you start to practice speaking another language. This will make you more comfortable creating your own sentences.
In addition to Play It!, Rocket Languages also has more ways to practice everything you learned in the audio lessons. These include flashcards, listening and speaking practice, writing activities, and a quiz to test your knowledge.
The activities are pretty straightforward and help you remember everything you learned. They can be a little repetitive sometimes, but at the end of the day, it’s your choice if you do them or not. If they start to get too repetitive, you can just skip them. For more practice, apps like Drops and Clozemaster can be really useful.
This is one feature of Rocket Languages that I really like. A lot of other apps, like Duolingo, just teach you the language and completely ignore the cultures that speak it. Rocket Languages actually has complete lessons that teach you the language and culture together.
These lessons are important because you won’t be speaking to a computer when you practice your target language. You’ll be speaking to another person who comes from a different culture and they may have a different way of communicating. Understanding another culture as you speak a language can help you communicate more effectively and naturally.
In previous versions of Rocket Languages, you could only record yourself and compare your pronunciation to native speakers. As of 2021 though, you can use speech recognition to improve your pronunciation.
At the end of the day though, using technology isn’t the best way to improve your pronunciation and fluency. It’s a helpful way to practice on your own, but speaking with an actual person will help you speak more like a native. If you don’t know anyone, you can always find a tutor on sites like italki or Preply.
I personally don’t find much value in the more gamified aspects of language apps, but some people really like them. For every activity you complete in your Rocket Languages course, you earn points and move up the leaderboard.
This can motivate you to do more activities and complete more practice exercises. Rocket Languages also tracks how many days you’ve studied in a row, so even if you’re feeling lazy one day, you’ll want to log in and practice so you don’t lose your streak (I won’t lie – this actually does motivate me)!
In addition to the main features, here are some other aspects of Rocket Languages that are worth mentioning:
Benchmarks: These are tests you can take whenever you want. They help you determine your current level, and they can help you track your progress over time.
Saved Notes and Vocab: With this feature, you can click different parts of the lessons to review later. You can also highlight words and phrases in the audio lesson transcript and save them and practice them afterwards.
Rocket Certifications: After each module of a Rocket Languages course, you can take a certification test to see how much of the module you remember. After you complete all of the module tests, you can get a Rocket Certificate to show you completed the entire course. These can’t really be used on your resume or job applications because they aren’t official, but they’re still a cool way to show off your achievement.
Ask Questions in the Forum: This is a place where you can ask questions to other language learners who use Rocket. The forums really aren’t too active though, so you’re better off asking questions on other sites like Reddit or Quora.
Rocket Languages currently has courses for the following languages: Spanish, French, Italian, German, Japanese, Chinese, Korean, Russian, Arabic, Hindi, Portuguese, American Sign Language (ASL), and English. Each course is unique to each language too (the same course isn’t translated into different languages), which makes it competitive with other apps like Babbel. For more information, you can read a specific review about the languages available on Rocket Languages:
It’s important to note that you need to buy each course separately if you want to learn more than one language though. Apps like MosaLingua and Busuu let you access all languages with one subscription, but Rocket Languages sells each course individually.
To give you an idea of how each course is different, here are some reviews of specific Rocket Languages courses.
The Rocket Spanish course has 3 different levels that cover 21 modules. Each level has interactive audio lessons, language and culture lessons, and a survival kit. The lessons aren’t focused on grammar (which is a good thing), but do include important aspects of grammar like Por vs. Para.
There are also Travelogue lessons that immerse you in Spanish. Overall, Rocket Languages Spanish is a strong course that will help you build a solid foundation in Spanish.
Rocket French has 3 levels and covers 23 modules of content. Its core lessons (audio, language and culture, and survival kit) teach you the most important and useful aspects of the language. You can also toggle between French and English in some lessons, which is great for immersion.
With Rocket Languages French, you’ll easily be able to discuss a huge variety of topics like French foods and humor, household items and living in the city, and even medical terms and phrases.
The Rocket Japanese course contains 3 levels and 21 modules. The audio, language and culture, and survival kit lessons are helpful for navigating everyday situations. There are also writing lessons in each module, which makes the Rocket Languages Japanese course stand out from others. These lessons include kanji, and you learn the correct stroke orders, definitions, and how to use them properly.
Rocket Japanese is the perfect course to start learning Japanese, but you’ll eventually need a more advanced course to become fluent.
The Rocket Korean course has 1 level composed of 7 modules. The topics will teach you to have basic conversations in Korean, but the course won’t help you become fully conversational. Having said that, Rocket Languages Korean does teach you to write in Korean. It has videos that show you the correct stroke orders, and the lessons include audio pronunciations and teach you the history of the alphabet.
Overall, Rocket Korean is a solid course for basic Korean skills, but won’t be helpful for more intermediate and advanced learners.
The Rocket Arabic course has 1 level with 7 modules. It teaches Egyptian Arabic, so you won’t learn any other dialects (like Modern Standard Arabic) with this course. Rocket Arabic is great if you want to learn how to write in Arabic, but it’s definitely not the best if you want to become conversational or fluent. While the lessons cover topics to help you communicate in everyday life, they aren’t very detailed.
For that reason, Rocket Languages Arabic is perfect if you’re preparing for a trip to the Arab world, but it’s not really that useful for people who actually want to study the language. There are other options available if you want to become fluent.
Overall, the learning experience in Rocket Languages is pretty good. The courses are super easy to follow and the lessons are high-quality and engaging. Each module follows a logical order to help you improve your language skills over time, and the lessons build on what you’re already learned.
The app has a lot of additional activities to help you practice what you learn in the lessons, but they can sometimes become a little repetitive. This is an unavoidable aspect of language learning though. And if you really don’t want to complete the activities, you don’t have to. The Rocket courses are flexible and you can skip around as much as you want.
The conversations all use native speakers and the audio is high-quality so they’re easy to understand. The words and phrases they include reflect how people actually speak the languages, which will help you sound more natural.
Even though it’s a pretty solid app overall, Rocket Languages does have some areas of improvement.
The main aspect of the courses that I didn’t care for was the use of English. Most of the lesson descriptions are in English, even in the more advanced modules. This may not be a negative for you though. I prefer a more immersive environment, but not everybody does.
Another aspect of Rocket Languages that needs improvement is the discrepancy in the courses. Some courses have 3 levels with multiple modules while others are very limited and have 1 level with a few modules. This means Rocket Languages is great for some languages, but not for others.
Because each Rocket Languages course is different, they all have different prices that range from $99.95 to $449.85. The table below shows the cost of each course and how many levels each price includes.
|Rocket Course||Level 1 Price||Levels 1-2 Price||Levels 1-3 Price|
|Chinese, French, German, |
Italian, Japanese, Spanish
|$149.95||$299.90||$449.85 (or $75/month |
for 6 months)
|Arabic, Hindi, Korean, |
|$149.95 (or $27/month |
for 6 months)
Sign Language (ASL)
|$99.95 (or $20/month |
for 6 months)
As you can see, more common languages like Rocket Spanish and French cost $149.95 for one level, $299.90 for two levels, and $449.85 for all three levels. If you buy the entire course, you can also choose to pay in installments of $75.00 per month for six months.
Less popular languages like Korean and Russian cost $149.95 for the entire course. You can also choose to pay $27.00 per month for six months.
The Rocket English and Rocket Sign Language (ASL) courses cost $99.95 for the entire course. You also have the option to pay $20.00 per month for six months.
Rocket Languages frequently offers coupons for its courses. The coupons usually range anywhere from 10% off to over 60% off your entire purchase. The best time to find Rocket Languages coupons is around major holidays and in August when kids are going back to school.
There are a lot of alternatives to Rocket Languages out there, but not very many of them match the quality and depth of Rocket Languages courses. The most popular and high-quality alternatives to Rocket Languages are Rosetta Stone, Pimsleur, Babbel, and Duolingo. Other strong competitors include Busuu, Mondly, and LinguaLift (especially for Russian and Japanese).
Rocket Languages vs Rosetta Stone is a common comparison. Both offer complete language courses, but Rocket Languages gives in-depth explanations in English. Rosetta Stone doesn’t use English at all and completely immerses you in your new language. Rocket Languages also teaches you to communicate more naturally and fluently while Rosetta Stone tends to teach more formal language.
In terms of price, Rocket Languages tends to be a little cheaper than Rosetta Stone and gives you lifetime access to its courses (you can even download them for offline use). Rosetta Stone charges a little more and the pricing can be a little deceiving. Both offer free trials though, so try both to see which is the best option for you. To read more about Rosetta Stone’s features, you can also read this review.
Rocket Languages’ content tends to be more updated though, and it also gives you more ways to practice. This doesn’t mean you should discredit Pimsleur though. The methodology behind Pimsleur is backed by science and is really effective for helping you learn quickly and effectively. Pimsleur is also more interactive than Rocket Languages. Both apps offer free trials, so sign up and see which one you like more. You can also read this Pimsleur review to learn more about the app.
Duolingo is one of the most popular language learning apps available. It’s completely free to use, but the quality of its language courses is much lower than Rocket Languages. While you study useful topics in both apps, Rocket Languages teaches you natural conversations and the Duolingo conversations are completely random.
Rocket Languages also develops each language course individually while Duolingo translates the same course into each language. Because of this, you get no culture lessons with Duolingo and Rocket Languages has extensive cultural lessons. Duolingo is also ad-supported, so advertisements frequently interrupt your learning. Read more in this Duolingo review.
Babbel vs Rocket Languages is a common comparison because both offer extensive language courses. Both apps also develop each language course individually to include important cultural aspects. So what’s the difference? The main one is price.
Babbel offers a monthly subscription starting at $9.99 while Rocket sells its entire course upfront, starting at $99.95. Babbel lessons also go a little more in depth, but Rocket Languages offers better ways to practice what you learn. Both offer free trials, so try them out to see which one you prefer. You can also learn more about Babbel in this review.
Rocket Languages Reviews from the Web
|Apple App Store||6.8/10|
|Google Play Store||9.2/10|
Rocket Languages is an excellent choice for popular languages like Spanish and French. The lessons go in-depth and cover useful topics to help you become conversational. Rocket Languages isn’t a very good choice for less popular languages like Arabic and Korean though. You’d be better off using other apps like Pimsleur or Mondly for these.
Rocket Languages costs anywhere from $99.95 to $449.85, depending on the language you want to learn and how many levels you want to buy. For all languages, you can choose to pay in installments instead of paying the full price upfront. These installments range from $20.00 to $75.00 per month for six months.
While you can build a solid foundation with Rocket Languages, you won’t become fluent. The courses are designed to help you improve all aspects of communication, like reading, writing, speaking, and listening. The lessons will help you communicate at an intermediate level, but you’ll need to use other resources to become fluent.
Yes, Rocket Languages has a free app that you can download to access all of your courses. The app has a sleek design and is very easy to use. It also has additional features, like speech recognition, that aren’t available with the web version of Rocket Languages.
For more popular languages like Spanish and French, Rocket Languages is definitely worth the money. The courses are comprehensive and the activities are engaging. By the end of the course, you’ll easily be able to have natural conversations with native speakers. However, for less popular languages like Arabic and Korean, you may be better off using other learning tools, like Pimsleur or Mondly.
This is an independent review of the Rocket Languages program. This review is not sponsored by or endorsed by the company, and the opinions in this review are all my own. I’ve used over 50 different apps during my language learning journey, and I love exploring new resources. To write this Rocket Languages review, I personally tested every feature of the program and verified everything the courses offer.