Saying “hello” is the first thing you probably learn whenever you start a new language. Obviously! When stepping into a new cultural realm, one of the simplest yet most meaningful ways to connect with locals is through greetings and farewells.

In Portugal, a country known for its vibrant culture and rich history, mastering the art of saying “hello” and “goodbye” can open doors to authentic interactions and lasting memories. No matter where you are, you are expected to greet people with a smile. 

This blog post puts together a list of greetings and farewells in European Portuguese. 

Greetings in Portuguese 

In Portugal, greetings are more than just words – they are a reflection of genuine warmth and hospitality. Whether you’re starting your day, entering a shop, or meeting someone for the first time, these phrases will help you connect instantly:

1. **Olá!** – The universal “hello,” suitable for any time of day.

2. **Bom dia!** – Literally “good day,” a cheerful morning greeting.

3. **Boa tarde!** – Meaning “good afternoon,” perfect for midday encounters.

4. **Boa noite!** – Translating to “good evening” or “good night,” used in the evening hours.

5. **Como estás? / Como está?** – These phrases, meaning “How are you?”, demonstrate your interest in someone’s well-being. Use “estás” in informal settings and “está” when addressing someone formally.

6. “Tudo bem?” literally translates to “all good?” and it’s a casual way to greet people by checking how they are. 

Responses to Greetings

Politeness and cordiality are highly valued in Portuguese culture. Respond with a smile and one of these phrases to keep the conversation flowing:

1. **Estou bem, obrigado/a!** – “I’m fine, thank you!”

2. **Tudo ótimo!** – “Everything’s great!”

3. **Estou um pouco cansado/a, mas bem.** – “I’m a bit tired, but fine.”


In some countries, just responding to the question “how are you?” is enough. But in Portugal, you are expected to ask the question back. To do that, you will either say

E tu?” in a casual and informal setting, or

E você?” in a more formal setting

E o senhor?” to an older man

E a senhora?” to an older woman. 

Farewells in Portuguese

As your interactions draw to a close, these farewells encapsulate well wishes and positivity:

1. **Adeus!** – A simple and sincere “goodbye.”

2. **Até logo!** – “See you soon!” to express anticipation of the next meeting.

3. **Até amanhã!** – “See you tomorrow!” for a specific time frame.

4. **Até breve!** – “See you shortly!” when parting with a sense of near-future reunion.

5. **Tenha um bom dia/noite!** – “Have a good day/night!” spreads positivity.

6. **Boa viagem!** – “Have a good trip!” when someone is embarking on a journey.

7. **Até já!** – “See you later!” for a casual and friendly farewell.

8. **Tchau!** – A friendly and informal “bye.”

9. “Bom dia/Boa tarde/Boa noite” – are also used as a farewell, as an equivalent to “have a good day/evening/night”. 


In Portugal, greetings and farewells are more than social niceties – they are the threads that weave together the tapestry of relationships. Whether you’re wandering through charming streets, engaging with locals, or savoring the culinary delights, embracing the art of greetings and farewells in European Portuguese will enrich your cultural experience and leave you with cherished memories of the warmth and hospitality that define this remarkable country. So, as you embark on your Portuguese adventure, remember these expressions and allow them to open doors to unforgettable connections. Até breve! 🇵🇹👋 

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