Being a foreigner in Brazil is going to invoke a certain curiosity from everybody that you meet. Especially in places where it is not common for foreigners to go you can expect that people will be surprised to see you there. Once they realize you aren’t Brazilian they are going to have some questions for you. These questions are asked in an attempt to get to know you better and understand why you are in Brazil.
Luckily for the beginning Portuguese learner, these questions don’t vary much between people. There are a handful of questions that almost everybody will ask with only slight variations. At first I was annoyed that everyone asked me the same things over and over again but then I realized how a beginner would benefit from being repeatedly asked the same questions.
Because almost everybody asks these questions, you are constantly being presented with new opportunities to practice. Every time you meet someone new you can tweak your responses and get feedback based on the other person’s response. In a short time you can get fluent in answering these questions and leave the impression that your Portuguese is strong and confident.
Here are the questions that you will most frequently be asked.
Where are you from? Which city?
De onde você é? De qual cidade?
How long have you been here?
Faz quanto tempo que você está aqui?
What are you doing here?
O que você está fazendo aqui?
How long are you staying?
Você vai ficar até quando?
Are you liking it here?
Você está gostando?
What do you like about Brazil?
O que você gosta do Brasil?
Have you tried pão de queijo?
What is your team? Who do you root for?
Qual é seu time? Pra quem você torce?
What questions do people ask you when you’re in Brazil?
Josh Plotkin is originally from California but now calls Belo Horizonte his home. He runs the site Brazilian Gringo to help others move to Brazil and teach English.
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