Tip 53. Shorter words

Some of the words that are similar in Portuguese and Spanish are a little shorter in Portuguese. Here are some examples.

English Spanish Portuguese
air aire ar
color el color* a cor*
hand mano mão
sister hermana irmã

*Note that cor is feminine in Portuguese while color is masculine in Spanish.

English: My sister held my hand.
Spanish: Mi hermana me agarró/cogió la mano.
Portuguese: A minha irmã segurou a minha mão.

Tip 31. Ah, Brazilians…

The Portuguese word for Brazilian (brasileiro/a) is similar to the one used in many Spanish-speaking countries in South America (brasilero/a). So, to sound Brazilian, simply remember not to use brasileño/a. If you already say brasilero/a, then you are set!

English: We are Brazilian.
Spanish: Nosotros somos brasileros (brasileños).
Portuguese: A gente é brasileiro.

Tip 15. Some true friends

Naturally, several words are very similar in Spanish and Portuguese, although it is always wise to pay attention to the pronunciation in Portuguese. Here are some of these “true friends”:

English Spanish Portuguese
now ahora agora
when cuando quando
where donde onde
so entonces então
today hoy hoje
new nuevo novo

English: So, where are you now?
Spanish: Entonces, ¿dónde estás ahora?
Portuguese: Então, onde é que você está agora?

Don’t be fooled! The word hoy in Spanish looks like and means the same as Portuguese hoje (“today”). However, hoy sounds like Brazilian Portuguese oi, which is a common greeting (hola in Spanish).