What is Españolandia?

Españolandia is a simulated travel experience to a Spanish-speaking country that allows Spanish Fair attendees to practice their conversational skills after completing their competitive events. It is a very fun communicative experience for students!

How can students register to attend Españolandia?

Participation in Españolandia is included on the Spanish Fair registration form. Students must be registered to attend the Spanish Fair and participate in at least one competitive event. In addition to competing in the events, students may register to also participate in Españolandia.

Is there a cost to attend?

There is a $4 registration fee for each student participating in Españolandia. We use the fee to cover our Language Fair costs and we will send you (by USPS mail) a passport and a guide for each student. Please complete the registration form and submit the payment as soon as possible so we can send the materials by return mail. Teachers and accompanying parents or chaperons are admitted for free and will receive a pase diplomático (to use instead of a passport), which will be sent with the passports and guides. Additional pase diplomáticos can be obtained at the entrance to Españolandia. Don’t procrastinate! Discuss the Spanish Fair and Españolandia immediately with your students, determine who will be coming, collect the $4 registration fee from each student, and submit your payment with the completed registration as soon as possible.

Additionally, food and souvenirs may be purchased for an additional cost at Españolandia. While purchasing items at Españolandia is NOT required, it does allow students to have a more realistic experience in the country. However, in order to earn stamps for their passports (more information below), students only need to visit the shops, ask prices, and converse in Spanish.

The exchange rate in Españolandia is 10 Españolandia pesos = $1.00 US dollar (or $0.10 for one peso). Españolandia does NOT accept credit/debit cards, pesos can only be purchased using cash.

Media Release Forms

By registering your child for Españolandia, you grant permission for your child to be photographed or videotaped by Brigham Young University for educational, promotional, and training purposes. We will not identify your child by name in any promotional activity. Thank you for your support of our program! Click here to download the Media Release Form.

How can I prepare my students for Españolandia?

Please do simulations in your classes and prepare your students before coming! Visiting Españolandia can be (almost!) as exciting as going to a real Spanish country! In addition to receiving a print copy for each student (the orange guides sent with the passports), theVisitors’ Guide to Españolandia is available on the Internet for free download. You can print portions of the guide and practice the different activities in your class. Make them part of your curriculum or use some of the actividades preparatorias. It is very rewarding for the students to see that they can function and have fun with the language by using what they have learned in class.

What will students do in Españolandia?

Students will visit a variety of “places” (i.e., bakery, clothing store, hotel, pharmacy, post office, souvenir store, etc.) and complete a different activity at each “place” (i.e., clear customs, exchange money, register at the hotel, obtain “medicine” at the pharmacy, mail a postcard, etc.) By speaking Spanish with the Españolandia natives at each station, students can earn a passport stamp. Once students have obtained at least 7 passport stamps, they can exit Españolandia. This minimum stamp requirement ensures that students use their Spanish in a variety of different interactions.

*If a student doesn’t have 7 stamps on his or her passport, but needs to leave Españolandia for another event or to use the restroom, they can leave and come back but they come back through the exit, not the main entrance. They don’t need to go through customs, the bank, and the metro again. Police at the exit will check their passport.

Encourage your students to buy food or lunch from our Hispanic panadería or restaurante and not “junk food” from the vending machines or American fast food at the CougarEat. This is a cultural experience and allows them to practice their Spanish.

The use of English in Españolandia

Please remind students and chaperones that they cannot use English in Españolandia. The use of English is a terrible offense to the citizens of Españolandia, and students who do so may end up in jail. If chaperones do not speak Spanish, students are encouraged to interpret for them (allowing them to further practice their Spanish skills!).

What should students bring? 

  • Their completed passport. We will mail the blank passport (blue) to you, but students need to fill it out before entering Españolandia.
  • Their visitor’s guide (orange). We will mail this to you.
  • If possible, $0.10 (10 U.S. cents) to enter the metro (subway), as this gives students practice exchanging money. If students do not have money, they may explain their situation to the banco de entrada (entrance bank) who will give them a peso to purchase a metro ticket.
  • The name and complete address of a family member, friend, or Spanish teacher to whom they wish to send a postcard. Postcards with incomplete information will not be mailed.
  • Optional: Cash to buy food and souvenirs while in Españolandia, if desired. Students are NOT required to spend money to participate in Españolandia, but there will be items available for purchase.

What will happen if a student misbehaves or disrupts Españolandia’s activities?

If students misbehave or purposefully disrupts Españolandia’s activities, they will be escorted out of Españolandia and the student’s school will lose points in the overall Foreign Language Fair competition. Also, please remind students that they cannot use English in Españolandia (it is a terrible offense to the citizens of Españolandia, so students who use English might end up in jail!). Students who purposefully speak English to “get caught” and go to jail multiple times may face the consequences of disrupting Españolandia.

Questions or suggestions?

Contact Dr. Nieves Pérez Knapp       Tel. (801)422-3196      E-mail: SpanishFair@byu.edu