In this post, I’ll show you 5 simple adjustments that you can make to your Brazilian Portuguese to start sounding more natural and fluent.
Being aware of these things will not only make you sound more like a Brazilians but it will also help you understand Brazilians a bit better
Conventional course books often teach a more formal Portuguese, and rarely show how Brazilians actually speak in colloquial, day-to-day conversation. Here are five things you need to be aware of if you want to sound more natural in informal conversation:
Brazilians very often shorten the word você to just cê .
The verb estar is also often shortened in colloquial speech, by dropping the first syllable (the es part)
Oi. Você está bem? Precisa de ajuda? / Hi. Are you OK? Do you need help?
Oi. ‘Cê tá bem? Precisa de ajuda?
3. Answering Yes/No questions
Brazilians will most of the time answer ‘yes’ by using the main verb that was in the question and conjugate it with ‘eu’ in the same tense used in the question. Check out the post How to Answer Yes and No Questions in Brazilian Portuguese for more details.
4. haver / ter
Although the verb haver can be used as there is/are, it’s much more common for Brazilians to use the verb ter (conjugated in the third person singular) with this meaning. See How to say there is/there are in Brazilian Portuguese post for more details.
Sim. Há uma farmácia perto daqui, por favor? / I do. Is there a pharmacy near here, please?
Preciso. Tem uma farmácia perto daqui, por favor?
4. a gente
Instead of the personal pronoun nós, it’s extremely common for Brazilians to use the noun phrase a gente, as we. See post The difference between ‘a gente’, ‘agente’ and ‘gente’ to learn more about it.
Brazilians often drop the first o in the word that means thank you: obrigado (said by men) and obrigada (said by women)- so it’s ver likely that you will hear them saying ‘brigado or ‘brigada!
Did you find these tips useful? Did you already know about them? Do you use them in your conversations in Brazilian Portuguese? Let me know in the comments!