Simple Phrases to Learn Before Visiting Portugal

When you visit a new country, it’s always great to pick up a few phrases along the way. This will help to put you in good stead with the locals and can help you to feel less like a tourist and more like a visitor. 

Whether it’s your first time in the Algarve, or if you’re regular vacationers, it can be fun to try out the local lingo. Whether you want to greet somebody in the morning or say thank you when your food or drinks arrive, we have you covered. 

At the Real Algarve, we have many years of experience working with the Algarve close to our hearts and have picked up some choice phrases in the process. Here are some beginner phrases to take note of when you visit the Algarve. 

Greeting phrases

It’s always nice to pass pleasantries when you’re on holiday and in Portugal, the level of English is quite good, especially for the younger generations. Regardless of how well the locals can speak the language, picking up the odd Portuguese phrase can go a long way. It is a great way to show the locals that you are interested in their culture, which is a pleasant experience for everyone.

Here are a couple of phrases that you can use to greet somebody in Portuguese:


OláThis means hello in Portuguese 


Tudo Bem?How are you doing?




These are simple phrases that will get you through the day. It’s common for people to speak in English, but use these simple terms to show a token of cultural respect. 

Greetings based on a time of day

If you want to take it a step further and would like to impress the locals, then using a greeting based on the time of day is great. Interestingly, these greetings can be used either to say hello or goodbye.


Bom DiaGood morning


Boa TardeGood afternoon


Boa NoiteGoodnight


…And of course, if you get stuck

If all else fails, the best phrase to use is

Fala Inglês?Do you speak English?