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Speak Portuguese Instantly

Updated on March 31, 2016


Lingua Portuguesa

If you really want to impress your friends you can do it, instantaneously, by speaking in a foreign language. This article won't teach you the entire Portuguese language, but you will, after one day, be able to communicate with a Portuguese speaker and it doesn't get more impressive than that


From the Ibero-Romance language group of the Romance languages, Portuguese is the official language of Portugal, Brazil, Mozambique and Angola. Portuguese is also spoken in Macau and several parts of India. There are around 250 million speakers and we are going to make it another one by learning some valuable Portuguese language phrases to help us communicate with Portuguese native speakers. Speak Portuguese Instantly Using English Words To Help Pronunciation.

Exercise 1 : Hello

The first word we will learn is the word every person, around the world, uses to greet each other: Hello. There are formal ways of saying this greeting, but we are on vacation so we'll use the pleasant, informal word.


Try this English word: cola.

Make sure that you pronounce the "a" like the "a" in "apple".

Portuguese phrase : Olá.

What it means : Hello.

English words : cola.

Pronounced : oh-la.

Wonderful! We can now speak our first Portuguese word. The holiday is off to a good start.

EuroPortuguese LA

Exercise 2 : Where Are The Toilets?

My first port of call when I arrive at any destination are the toilets. We need to know where they are. We can already say "hello", now let's ask where the bathroom is.

Onde fica o banheiro?

Try these English words: con-way-seek-a-oh-man-way-low.

The letter "a" used, on it's own, as it is here after the word "seek", is always pronounced as "a" in "apple".

Portuguese phrase : Onde fica o banheiro?

What it means : Where Are The Toilets?

English words : con-way-seek-a-oh-man-way-low.

Pronounced : on-jay-feek-a-oh-ban-yay-roh.

I use English words to give you a guide on pronunciation. When you have listened to the native speaker, you might think a different word would be better than the one I've used. By all means, use your word. Whatever it takes to make yourself understood.

The Travel Linguists Excellent Video...Skip To 3:55

Exercise 3 : Thank You

What a pleasant word this is. It will always get a response whenever we say it in any language and it can be used in hundreds of situations. Not a single day of our holiday will pass without us needing to use it.


Portuguese phrase : Obrigado.

What it means : Thank You.

English words : sob-dig-lard-no.

Pronounced : ob-brig-guard-oh.

Even though I've separated each word, try to say them all as one word when you pronounce obrigado. For example; ob-brig-guard-oh = obbrigguardoh.

Thanks To Expertvillage

Exercise 4 : Excuse me

Attracting someones attention on vacation will surely happen, whether it be a waiter, a shopkeeper or a passer-by. Use this phrase:

Me da licença

Portuguese phrase : Me da licence.

What it means : Excuse me.

English words : bee-a-see-tense-car.

Pronounced : me-da-lee-syens-ah.

The Travel Linguist....Skip To 2:55

Exercise 5 : How Much is it?

As nice as it would be to travel and not spend a single penny, it's just not going to happen. Sooner or later you will want to know how much something costs.

Quanto custa?

Portuguese phrase : Quanto custa?

What it means : How Much is it?

English words : swan-do-whoosh-a.

Pronounced : kwan-too-coosh-ta.

Another Informative Expertvillage Video

Exercise 6 : I Would Like

This is a great phrase. We can just point to whatever it is we want and say "I would like". It saves us having to learn the name of everything we might want.

Eu gostaria

Portuguese phrase : Eu gostaria.

What it means : I Would Like.

English words : few-must-a-me-a.

Pronounced : eeyou-gust-a-ree-a.

As with any language if you know a native speaker of Portuguese then you could try out these phrases with them. They will help you perfect your pronunciation

Another Travel Linguist Lesson

Exercise 7 : Drinks

Eventually during our stay, we are going to need some refreshment. Why don't we go to a bar or cafe and order some drinks?

Uma Xícara...Um Copo...Café...Chá...Cerveja...Leite...Vinho...Água

Portuguese phrase : Uma xícara de café...Uma xícara de chá.

What it means : A cup of coffee...A cup of tea.

English words : hummer-bee-lara-too-cafe...hummer-bee-lara-too-bah.

Pronounced : ooma-she-cara-joo-caffay...ooma-she-cara-joo-shah

Portuguese phrase : A glass of

What it means : Um copo de cerveja...leite...vinho...água.

English words :

Pronounced :

Learn Portuguese with

Exercise 8 : Numbers

When we order our drinks we may want more than one. Let's learn the numbers from one to five.

Um ... Dois ... Três ... Quatro ... Cinco

Portuguese phrase : Um ... Dois ... Três ... Quatro ... Cinco.

What it means : One...Two...Three...Four...Five.

English words : bum...royce...brace...quatro...mink-who.

Pronounced : umm...doyce...trace...quatro...sink-oo.

Fun Traposo US Video

Exercise 9 : The Bill / The Check

In Portugal they have a custom of wanting you to pay for the refreshment and services they have provided. Hence, we will need to ask for the bill.

A factura por favor

Portuguese phrase : A factura por favor.

What it means : The bill, please.

English words : a-back-cure-a-more-cab-ore.

Pronounced : a-fack-ture-a-pour-fab-ore.


Exercise 10 : Goodbye

We began with saying hello, now our vacation is at an end, let's learn to say goodbye.


Portuguese phrase : Adeus.

What it means : Goodbye.

English words : a-pay-whoosh.

Pronounced : a-day-oosh.


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    • TaraSquirrel profile image

      Tarasquirrel 2 months ago from Azores

      Wow. Very good explanation. I am actually portuguese and found this article quite interesting. I think it is perfect for tourists that visit Portugal and encounter people who don't know English. Like this, at least they have some basic knowledge of the language.

    • lidialbuquerque profile image

      lidialbuquerque 16 months ago

      Muito bom!! Very good post!