Conversational French for traveling?
I am really enjoying the Duolingo method and am learning a lot. However, I started this because I am going to France in a couple of months. Are there sections that focus on basic conversations, travel, renting a car directions, shopping, etc?
Not really no. There are some lessons about Food and things like that but Duolingo is designed to teach you the language from basics, not directed to specific tasks (so there are Food lessons but not ones that cover Restaurants / Hotels / etc. In addition you can't just pick and choose what lessons you do, you need to go through them in order.
However Duolingo is great for teaching you general vocabulary and the rules of grammar. Well actually you kind of teach yourself, but you end up learning them. Knowing this helps A LOT when you are using phrasebooks or reading signs and so on.
If you have a smart phone you should think about getting a good offline dictionary. I love the VidaLingua dictionary for French. It has normal French/English translations but also verb conjugations and phrases. Combined with what you learned from Duolingo the phrasebook should be easy to understand and remember.
Thank you for the information and the VidaLingua recommendation. Since posting my question, I've discovered that I can use Mango through my library, which at least initially is conversationally focused. I'm going to start with that and then return to DuoLingo once I have some basics to communicate with people during my visit.