The barriers to intercultural communication can be both internal and external.
Internal barriers are personal problems that may prevent you from communicating effectively with people of other cultures. For example, if you lack confidence in your ability to speak another language, you may be afraid to use it, even if you know how. This is an internal barrier because it has nothing to do with the person or culture you’re trying to communicate with; it’s a problem within yourself.
External barriers are problems that exist between two people or groups who want to communicate but cannot because of factors outside their control. For example, if two people speak different languages, they won’t be able to communicate effectively until one learns the other’s language (which could take years). This is an external barrier because it’s something outside the control of individuals involved in the communication process.
Another barrier to intercultural communication is different nonverbal communication styles. If a person from one culture uses a particular nonverbal gesture that means something else in another culture (e.g., touching one’s nose when someone asks for money), it could cause confusion and misunderstanding.
The solution to these barriers is to learn about other cultures, be aware of stereotypes and preconceptions and pay attention to nonverbal cues from other cultures in order to avoid miscommunication.