10 Essential Portuguese Phrases Every Expat Should Know
It’s easy to assume that as many nations teach English as a second language there’s no need to learn the native tongue when moving abroad, but you wouldn’t believe how many doors a little language knowledge can open for you.
If you’re emigrating to Portugal, for example, having a grasp of Portuguese can help you to communicate effectively and respectfully with your new countrymen and women, make you more employable, improve your social/corporate life and help ease the culture shock which often accompanies an overseas move.
Unfortunately, learning a language can’t be done overnight and you will have to put in considerable time and effort if you’re hoping to become fluent.
While languages classes, dvd’s, online tutorials and books are all great learning aids, nothing beats interacting with native speakers. Locals are generally happy to correct you on pronunciation and teach you colloquial terms if you’re willing to make an effort, so try and speak English as little as you can!
If you’re short on time, learning these few essential words and phrases will make it easier for you to throw yourself into Portuguese life and start learning from locals once you arrive.
Hello – Olá
Goodbye – Adeus
Yes – Sim
No – Não
Please – Por Favor
Thank you – Obrigado
My name is… – O meu nome é
Nice to meet you – Prazer em conhecelo
How are you? – Como vai? / Com vai você?
Do you speak English? – Você fala o ingles?
If you feel like you’ve got a handle on those terms you may want to start learning these other basic Portuguese words and phrases…
Good Morning – Bom dia
Maybe – Talvez
Where is? – Onde está?
How do I get to? – Como eu chego á…?
How much is that? – Quanto é isso?
I don’t understand – Eu não entendo
Car – Carro
Train – Trem
Plane – Avião
Train Station – Estação de trem
Airport – Aeroporto
Left – Deixou
Right – Direito
Bread – Pão
Beer – Cerveja
Wine – Vinho
Juice – Suco
Waiter – Garçom
Waitress – Garçonete
And then, of course, there are always Portuguese numbers to learn!
One – Um/Uma
Two – Dois/Duas
Three – Três
Four – Quatro
Five – Cinco
Six – Seis
Seven – Sete
Eight – Oito
Nine – Nove
Ten – Dez
So boa sorte with your new expat life, and remember to have diversão!
For extensive information about moving to and living in nations like Portugal check out our extensive collection of country guides.