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2020’s italki Review: Plans & Pricing, Usability, Ratings

Editor Rating
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Strengths

  • Lessons tailored to your specific needs
  • Few customer complaints
  • Multiple languages
  • Affordable prices

Weaknesses

  • You have to pay a 4% fee for credit
  • No refunds

Key Details

YEARS IN BUSINESS

13 Years

CUSTOMER SUPPORT

Phone, Email

MOBILE APP

Yes

CATEGORIES

Conversational lessons, Business language, Exam preparation assistance

FREE TRIAL

3 Trial Lessons for 30-minutes

italki was founded in 2007 by Yongyue Jiang and Kevin Chen and is registered in Hong Kong with offices in Shanghai. italki offers 130 different foreign languages taught by 10,000 teachers with a range of skills. 

In this italki review, we will look at various aspects of the business including:

  • Who can benefit from this platform?
  • Plans and pricing
  • Usability
  • Help and support
  • Reviews and testimonials
  • Alternatives

Courses and training include:

  • Conversational lessons
  • Business language
  • Provision of resources, prepared materials, and structured lesson plans for students
  • Assistance in language exam preparation

Platform Key Details 

Who can benefit from this platform? 

    • Anyone who wants to communicate with people all over the world
    • People with time constraints
    • Anyone whose budget doesn’t extend to private tuition

italki is best known for the large number of languages available and can cover all your language goals. This allows you to study as many languages as you please at your own pace. 

You can learn from both community and professional teachers, and the huge number of teachers gives you the chance to choose a teacher to suit your needs and personality. 

Foreign Language Instruction 

Verified italki reviews praise the excellent foreign language lessons offered by the platform. There are two grades of teachers: community teachers and professional teachers. The first step is to find a teacher. You can watch the teachers’ videos to help you decide whether you want to learn with them. You can change teachers or use both grades of teachers depending on your needs.

For example, if you’re cramming for an exam, a highly qualified teacher is recommended. Book your lesson using the teacher’s Calendar showing their availability. If you need a lesson in a hurry there is an “Available Now” option where a teacher can usually help you within 5 to 10 minutes.

Business Language

Ideal for businesses in the global marketplace and businesses with international clients, these lessons can help employees become versed in other languages. italki ratings are generally positive in regard to the business language courses.

italki Community

A social platform for interaction with other learners, italki Community offers the following features:

  • Notebook – Write in your target language for practice. If a native speaker sees it he/she will correct it for you. Get involved by helping others practice in your native language. 
  • Questions and Answers – Ask questions and contribute by answering other people’s questions.
  • Forum – Join in a discussion on a chosen topic. 
  • Language Partner – Connect with someone learning the same language and learn together.

Pricing & Plans

italki is not a “course” per se and does not offer lessons. It simply acts as a facilitator for teachers to give lessons as required.

Fees are paid by purchasing “credits” equivalent to U.S. dollars either via your credit card, PayPal, Alipay, or other payment platforms. Your credit balance can be viewed in your “wallet” at any time. 

Fees depend on lesson duration, which can be 30, 45, 60, or 90 minutes. The teachers set their own prices, but the average italki 60-minute lesson would cost $64, based on a particular teacher’s success. So you can expect to pay from $10 to $80 per hour. There is a minimum price of $4.

Lesson Packages: you can agree on the number of lessons with the teacher. 

Is there any italki free trial or money-back guarantee? 

italki offers three 30-minute trial lessons with three different teachers at highly reduced rates. When you sign up you receive a $10 credit in your wallet, which can be used to purchase a lesson.  

There is no refund and a processing fee of 4% for the purchase of credits on your italki account. 

Cancellation Policy

You can cancel the lesson with a 24-hour notice by pressing the “Cancel Lesson” button. If the request is declined or there is no response, the lesson will proceed. 

Package termination: If an agreement is reached between the teacher and student, you will receive refunds at the package rate. 

Affiliates: Signing up through an affiliate link entitles you to bonus credits after your first italki purchase.

Referrals: If you refer a friend who purchases a lesson for $20, you both receive a $10 credit. 

A large number of available teachers means that for a relatively low price you can find a skilled teacher. Added features make it easy to get answers, get your writing checked, and find a language partner.

Usability 

italki Classroom is available to all students on the website. It can be used to request lessons and enables you to ‘Accept’, ‘Decline’, ‘Change date and time’, and ‘Change price’ for the lesson. It fully supports file sharing and screen sharing on the mobile app, Firefox, and Chrome. It is simple to use with step-by-step instructions. 

Share Screen is a function that enables you to share your screen with the teacher in italki Classroom. It works for Google Chrome and Firefox browsers.

italki Classroom automatically connects students and teachers. Connect with your chosen teacher using your choice of video chat software e.g. Skype, FaceTime, Google Hangouts, etc.

italki can track all system records in the event of any dispute so problems are easily resolved.

 Easy accessibility ensures that lessons can be taken anytime and anywhere.

Help & Support

You can submit support tickets or find chatbot support on the website. There is also a broad knowledgebase online with helpful articles and an FAQ.

If you experience connection problems with italki Classroom, there is a Connections Problems link you can use. Prior to the lesson, you will be sent a reminder by the teacher.

italki customer complaints are usually dealt with in an efficient and prompt manner.

Pros & Cons

Lessons tailored to your specific needs

Few customer complaints

Multiple languages

Affordable prices

No refunds

You have to pay a 4% fee for credit

Sometimes there are connection issues with italki Classroom

italki User Reviews & Testimonials 

YouTube probably has the largest number of reviews, both positive and negative. italki receives a large number of new, positive reviews on Trustpilot almost daily. On Glassdoor, you can find reviews from italki teachers who mostly find the platform enjoyable and easy to use.

Recommendations and complaints

Users have called italki “the most useful tool you’ll find for learning a language” and noted the “large numbers of teachers available even for less common languages”. Others appreciate the flexibility that enables you to schedule lessons whenever convenient and the extra features like a notebook, questions and answers, and language partners.

Lessons can be tailored to your specific needs and you are in control of the learning process. The community platform for interaction and language practice with native speakers is a big hit with most users.

italki negative reviews

Amongst the few things that users complain about is the fact that you have to buy credits and can’t pay for one class at a time. One italki teacher review found that they had to try several teachers before finding the right one.

The use of credits as a payment method has mixed reviews. Some see it as a disadvantage because if you’ve purchased too many there is no refund. Others see it as a motivator encouraging you to use them.

Alternatives 

Our italki review would not be complete without comparing italki with its competitors so that you know what it excels in and what its weak points are when compared to other similar companies. 

Cambly only offers English language courses, whereas with italki you have a vast choice of languages. All Cambly teachers are native English speakers from various parts of the English-speaking world. You can always access your favorite tutor through their reservation system. 

Verbling is italki’s biggest competitor and offers similar services. Unlike italki, lessons are only conducted on their platform, whereas italki uses other platforms e.g. Skype. With Verbling, you pay for your lessons in cash, while with italki you purchase credits in advance. Verbling has fewer teachers and is more expensive. 

Preply is very similar to italki and offers some of the cheapest online classes starting at $3. However, you cannot change teachers, so it is less flexible than italki.

Summary

italki positive reviews agree that it is one of the best platforms offering services in the field of foreign language learning at reasonable prices. It has the greatest number of teachers, both qualified and native speakers, teaching the widest range of foreign languages. This, along with its flexible scheduling, allows you to plan your lessons at your convenience. 

It caters to the needs of both individuals and businesses. Its website is extremely user-friendly and classes are easily accessible online.

Editor Rating
VISIT WEBSITE

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FAQ

How does italki work?

italki helps you learn a language by connecting you to teachers. The lessons include speaking and listening, as well as practicing with native speakers.

How much does italki cost?

Lessons usually cost between $10 and $30 per hour but can cost as much as $80 depending on the teacher.

How do I cancel italki?

Classes should be canceled 24 hours in advance. Your credit will last as long as you have an italki account but you must log in once a year. We have seldom seen any complaints about cancellations in an italki review.