To start: a few Portuguese phrases


Alright, so you came to Rio or are planning to come to Rio and you think we speak Spanish. Please, review that! We are the ONLY country in South America in which Portuguese is the official language. That means we do NOT speak Spanish. We speak Portuguese! Yes, Portugal colonized us, unfortunately, until 1822. I think it’s also nice to say we speak Portuguese, not Brazilian! :-) Well, we speak Brazilian Portuguese, which is very different from the Portuguese spoken in Portugal. I’ve decided to start this blog with a bit of a linguistic help to you guys coming here (it’s always nice to know a word or two, no?)

Here I will help you with a few basic phrases and a few things we say here in the city. Alright, let’s start! 

ENGLISH                         BRAZILIAN PORTUGUESE
Hi!/Hello!                        Oi!/Olá!
Hey! You ok?                   E aí? Tudo bem?/Tudo certo?
How are you?                  Como você tá?/ Tudo bem?
I’m fine, and you?           Tudo bem, e você?
Everything ok?                Tudo beleza?/ Tudo tranquilo?
Everything’s ok.              Tudo beleza!/Tudo tranquilo!
Thank you.                     Obrigado (if you’re a man)/ Obrigada (if you’re a girl)
You’re welcome              De nada!
 It’s hot, isn’t it?             Tá calor, né?
OK.                               Beleza./Tranquilo./Tá.
Long time no see!           Quanto tempo!
What’s your name?         Qual é o seu nome?
My name is…                  Meu nome é …
Where are you from?      De onde você é?
Nice to meet you            Prazer!
Good morning                Bom dia
Good afternoon              Boa tarde
Good evening/night        Boa noite (starting from 6pm)
Bye!                             Tchau!/Até mais!/Até!
See you tomorrow.        Até amanhã!
Take care                     Se cuida!
Have a nice day            Tenha um bom dia!
I don’t understand                  Não entendi
Do you speak Portuguese?      Você fala português?
Yes, a little                             Sim, um pouco
Yes, a little bit                        Sim, um pouquinho
How do you say … in Portuguese?          Como se diz … em português?
Excuse me                              Com licença!
Sorry                                     Desculpa!
Please                                    Por favor!
How much is this?                    Quanto custa?
Where’s the toilet?                   Onde fica o banheiro?
Where’s the subway?               Onde fica o metrô?
Help!                                      Socorro!
Happy birthday!                      Parabéns!

*Obrigado/Obrigada are usually said as “Brigado”/”brigada”. In Rio, we use “valeu”. Sometimes we even say “valeu, brigado”. ;)

*”né” is our question tag for ALL sentences. “You’re from here, aren’t you?” – Você é daqui, né?

*Tá is a great word. We use it to say “ok” when we agree with what someone says or to ask for confirmation. “Te ligo hoje às 7, tá?” – “I’ll call you at 7, ok?” = “is that OK with you”? “Tá” is short for “Tá bom” (está bom) = it’s good. As a response, we’d say: Tá. (OK, you can call me at 7.)

*Qual é o seu nome? sometimes is said as “Qual seu nome?” or maybe “Como você se chama?”

*We don’t usually say “sim”. If someone asks you if you speak Portuguese, just repeat the verb. “Você fala português?” – “Falo.”

*The suffix -inho/a is used to talk to kids or when you want to sound sweet. It’s very very used!

Well, that’s all for today, folks! :)

If you have any question, let me know. :-D


2 thoughts on “To start: a few Portuguese phrases

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