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Italki review

Catherine Miller

In a Nutshell

italki is a great tool for language learning. Its focus is on one-on-one lessons with tutors from around the world, with the option to book single, one-off sessions or buy a package. You can also connect with the learning community and take a language test to assess your ability. For improving speaking and other skills, italki is an easy and fun solution.


  • Practice over 150 different languages
  • Book a lesson when it suits you
  • Connect with a community of learners


  • No live chat support
  • No group lesson feature

italki at a Glance

Editorial Score

Language Variety

This category measures the overall quality of the product

Ease of Use

This category measures the overall quality of the product


This category measures the overall quality of the product


This category measures the overall quality of the product

Learning Flexibility

This category measures the overall quality of the product

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How much does italki cost? 

It’s free to create your italki account and use the community function, but you will need to pay for lessons. Each italki tutor sets their own price, with costs varying according to the length and type of lesson you want to complete as well as the type of tutor (professional teachers are typically more expensive than community tutors). This means you are likely to find something that suits your budget and your learning needs. 

As an italki user, you can purchase each session as a one-off, or you can buy a lesson package with multiple session passes. This confers a discount, so the cost of each session in a lesson package is lower than if you bought them individually. 

You can pay for lessons using your debit/credit card, or purchase italki credits which can then be exchanged for lessons. You can also gift credits or earn more credits through the refer-a-friend program. 

Optional add-ons

You can purchase a language test or Oxford Online Placement test for an additional cost ($30 and $10 respectively). These are a great way to assess your level before you begin learning, or to check your progress after a period of study.

How does italki work?

italki connects you with language tutors from around the world for online, one-on-one lessons via video call. These can vary from basic conversation practice to more developed sessions focusing on reading, writing, and speaking and listening. You can search italki’s tutor database without even creating an account, but you’ll need to register for free to actually book a lesson.

When you’re linked with native and advanced speakers, you’ll have the opportunity to develop your language skills in a supportive environment with focused attention. italki currently has tutors for over 150 languages, so even if you are learning something more obscure, you’re likely to find the platform useful. 

Lessons are held via italki’s video-classroom software, or another supported platform of your choice (Zoom, Google Meet, FaceTime, WeChat, QQ, or Skype). You can schedule sessions at times that suit you, and with such a wide choice of tutors you are very likely to find someone who is offering a time that works. If you’ve got a free hour, you can also use the instant lesson feature to find a tutor online immediately.

In addition to the main function of finding a tutor, italki also has a strong language-learning community where you can link up with other learners, arrange language exchanges, post snippets for feedback, and take part in challenges. 

Is italki reliable and safe?

italki has a high number of positive reviews on Trustpilot: 84% of 10,264 reviewers find its service “excellent,” and a further 12% “great.” Users note that italki is easy to use, a motivating way to study languages, and reasonably priced. The small number of complaints tend to pick up on a lack of transparency around pricing. 

You will need to review each individual tutor after each lesson, and these reviews are visible to other users. This is a useful feature that lets you check the reliability of any tutor on the site before you book. 

What’s special about italki?

italki is focused on connecting users with language tutors from around the world, but it also comes with a range of features that make it a great solution for language learners. 

Trial lessons

When you first join italki, you can take three heavily discounted trial lessons. This is a great feature that gives you the chance to try out different teachers and find someone who suits you. You can also assess whether this style of learning is right before you commit to paying full price for lessons. 


The italki community brings language learners together. You can make posts in your target language, using daily prompts or your own ideas. You can also post to find a language exchange partner. 

Language tests

italki comes with the option to take a language test for some languages, either the in-house one (in English, French, Spanish, German, Portuguese, Italian, or Japanese) or the Oxford Online Placement Test (English grammar). This feature is really useful in helping you assess your starting point (if it’s a language you have prior experience with), and for seeing how far you’ve come after some study. 

Language challenges

italki runs regular language challenges, with goals based around the number of hours completed on italki, e.g. 20 hours of lessons in a given time. You can select your own goal from a specified range, and meeting higher goals merits rewards such as discounts and a free language test.

Mobile app

It’s possible to use italki both on the web and via its mobile app. The app lets you book lessons and interact with the italki community via your phone, which is useful when you’re on the go. 

Referral program

If you invite a friend who ends up learning through italki, you can earn up to $30 in italki lesson credits. Your friend will also get $10 in lesson credits. 

Help and Support

italki offers a searchable FAQ with helpful answers. The blog also covers different language learning topics. If you need further support, you can contact italki through a web form. It would be useful if italki provided live chat or phone support for more urgent issues, but at this time they don’t.

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Bottom Line

If you’re learning a language, italki is a brilliant tool. With the ability to connect to tutors worldwide, even if you’re learning something obscure, italki is likely to have something for you. If you’re on a busy schedule, you’re able to book in one-off sessions at a time that suits you, even instantly. 

Additionally, you can connect with the community to share your writing or find a language exchange partner. And if you want to check your level, you can purchase and take a test. Although there’s no group lesson feature on italki, the one-on-one focus means you can get personalized attention and feedback. For building your language skills, italki is definitely worth exploring. 


Is italki worth it?

The good thing about italki is that you can choose the type of tutor, type of lesson, and the cost. This means you can customize your experience to suit your schedule and budget. With the language gains you can make through intensive speaking practice, interaction with a community, and testing your progress, italki can be a powerful solution. 

Is italki free?

italki is not free. You will get three discounted trial sessions, and after that the cost will depend on the lesson price set by the teacher. Purchasing a package of multiple lessons will discount the cost of each lesson. 

How do I purchase a package on italki?

When you find a teacher you want to work with on italki, click through to “Book now.” Once you’ve selected the lesson type, you can select the package you want to purchase. You will then need to book the individual lessons at times that suit you. 

Catherine Miller is a lead member of personal finance and pension innovator Maji, where’s she’s responsible for content creation and running Maji’s personal finance masterclass. Miller also holds degrees in English and education, and worked as a teacher before moving into writing about finance for Top10.com. Today, she combines aspects of education and personal finance to help readers make better decisions in finance and beyond.

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