What made you want to learn Portuguese?

Patrick, thanks for your response. I will check out the Porto school for sure (it’s one of our favourite cities).

One of my main reasons for learning Portuguese is the challenge. It’s really hard in the UK to find ways to learn and I suppose that makes it a bit exotic!
This is an account of some trips I made to Porto where I stayed in AirBNB homes to learn Portuguese - not always with success!

Corrections by Joseph and others are always welcome:

Eu sou reformado mas a minha mulher ainda trabalha. Gostamos muito de Portugal e, as vezes, eu vou alí sozinho e ficar numa casa AirBNB para aprender o Português.
Gosto muito de aprender linguas extrangeiras - viajava pelo meu trabalho e falo francês bastante bem e alimão bastante mal :slight_smile:
Também tenho aprendido espanhol o que confundo muito com o português :frowning:.

A primeira vez fiquei na casa de Rui. Tinha aprendido um pouco de português com libros e CDs.
O Rui disse que falou inglês mas o seu inglês, como o meu português era muito mau. Felizmente a mulher dele falou francês e podíamos comunicar sem problemas.
O Rui era um homem muito simpático e eu aprendi que ele tinha sido um prisioneiro de guerra durante um ano durante a guerra de independência de Timor Leste.

Na segunda vez quando fui ao Porto fiquei numa casa AirBNB onde o marido era francês e a sua mulher era portuguêsa. Fiquei cinco dias alí mas não encontrei a mulher e só falei francês - os outros hóspedes eram francês também!
Eu tinha começado um curso de português na Inglaterra então podia praticar-o quando visitei as outras cidades perto do Porto.

Este curso na Inglaterra era bom mas a professora era brasileira e o seu sotaque era diferente do que em Portugal.
Por coincidência, na terceira vez no Porto a senhoria da casa AirBNB era brasileira também. Era uma mulher charmosa mas insistiu em falar inglês (muito mal) e quando falou português teve um sotaque brasileiro mais forte do que a minha professora.
Então esta ideia de ficar numa casa AirBNB para aprender português não funcionava e tive aulas particulares numa escola de linguas excelente: http://www.learningportugueseinportugal.com/

Se não podia falar muito português nas três primeiras casas AirBNB a senhoria da quarta casa compensou-o. Era uma artista excêntrica e muito faladora. Ela não falou inglês - falou francês um pouco mas insistiu falar português muitas vezes e nunca devagar.
Eu só compreendi um quarto do que ela disse mas ela estava muito feliz de falar conmigo.
Encontrei também uma professora para ensinar-me português. Tinha crescido em França e falou português e francês, então eu podia aprender português e aperfeiçoar o meu françes no mesmo tempo.

Na ultima vez ‘chez AirBNB’ fiquei numa casa duma mulher muito simpática que tinha viajada muito por o mundo. O seu ex-marido era diplomata português e eles viveram em muitos países. Ela disse-me que o seu país preferido era Zimbabwe!
Eu tive sorte que uma amiga dela é professora das linguas e ela dou-me umas aulas excelentes.


Muito obrigado Joseph.

As you’ve noticed my use of imperfect and preterite tenses is not always correct. I guess I just have to read more to know when each is used in context.

Olá! I’ve been trying to learn Portuguese off and on over the years. My extended family is Portuguese. Lack of good resources, time and proximity, have made it challenging to learn the language. With advancements in technology and more available time to study, I’m determined to learn until I can speak the language and carry on a conversation. Then in turn, teach it to those in my family who don’t speak it. A lofty goal I know!

I’m currently learning European Portuguese however my goal is to also learn the language as it is spoken in the Azores. Particularly from the island of Sao Miguel. I understand that it’s spoken quite differently (even from city to city on the island) however I’m determined in learning what I can from both.

I’m happy to have found Practice Portuguese which has provided me with an outline of lessons and levels to track my progress. I’m enjoying the Shorties. It’s a great way to learn Portuguese language conversation. I’d love to see the Shorties become interactive, whereby the learner would need to answer simple multiple choice questions in various parts of the conversation, indicating their understand of what’s being discussed.

I’m really enjoying Practice Portuguese YouTube videos. Rui and Joel, your newest videos where we can actually see you as you teach are excellent. While I enjoy audio/podcasts to sharpen my listening skills, I do find I engage more visually. And seeing your expressions as you speak is very helpful. Conversations with your Avó takes me back to so many conversations with minha querida sogra. Sem preço!


I’m moving to Portugal lthis year and I can’t wait. I want to learn as much as possible before I get there.

My husband was born in Faial (Acores) and moved to Canada when he was three. I, on the other hand am totally Canadian (I have relatives that moved to Canada in the 1760’s, during the American Revolution), and have no other languages but English. We have been married 34 years, and my mother-in-law spoke no English, although most of the family is fluent in both English and Portuguese. I have tried learning Portuguese through various courses but most concentrated on the tourist phrases, not becoming fluent. Although I could understand words, I could never (or was to afraid) speak Portuguese. In the 6 months since I have been using this website, I have learned more Portuguese and become more confident than I ever did in the past 34 years! My husband & I now plan on retiring to Lagos (in the Algarve) in the next year, which is an even greater reason to become fluent in Portuguese!


Welcome @pauladwg, and thanks for posting. Nice to hear that Practice Portuguese is working so well for you! It’ll come in handy when you move to Lagos :slight_smile:

Thanks! I really like Practice Portuguese, especially the community aspect. The ironic part is that I am now teaching my husband Portuguese grammar. Because he was only 3 when he came to Canada, he learned to speak Portuguese, since it was the only language spoken at home, but he never went to school in Portugal, so never learned the grammar. He can only read Portuguese by sounding out words. Thank you Practice Portuguese!

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Ha! Except that in Lagos everybody wants to speak English! I find this quite frustrating sometimes (although it made life very easy in the early days) and I find I lack the confidence to persevere with my very poor Portuguese!
The people are all very friendly though

My wife Bianca and I plan to move to Portugal in our retirement. We visited in early 2019 for two weeks. COVID-19 has delayed plans but we are focused on learning the language to at least some conversational ability prior to moving over.


Olá, @oscarbernardo30. Hope your language learning is progressing well! Best of luck.

Joel, I seriously thought you are native in Portuguese the first time I watched your video. I was so shocked that you used to be one of us. Well done Joel! You are my goal now. I hope one day people can mistake me for a native speaker lol.

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I decided to learn portuguese because of an embarrassing moment. My son (english) and family live in Portugal (Ericeira). My grandson plays rugby and I went to watch him play one day and was left with his portuguese rugby coach for a short time. He asked me something which I didn’t understand - I was mainly relying on spanish to get me through- He then said “Tem esposa” which I did understand. In my eagerness to reply I answered " Si estoy cansado" I’m not sure whether he thought I was tired of marriage or my wife but he gave me a strange look and moved on. I had used the wrong language, the wrong verb and the wrong word. I have met the coach a few times since and we have a laugh about it.
Thanks to this fantastic site I am able to visit Portugal without embarrassing myself anymore.

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What made me learn Portuguese? Well, my wife :slight_smile:
Last I’ve pushed my wife to learn French and she did. In a few months, she was able to speak in French for hours.

But only through internet calls.

So I gave her a task. Choose a destination and we will go there… I thought it will be France, or some French speaking country. I was mistaken. She chose Madeira. Because she is a biologist in heart and Madeira is known for it’s glorious nature. She also wanted to learn new language. Our destination decided the language for her. And for me.

In a few months we will move to Madeira with our four kids. It’s gonna be a journey :slight_smile:

We are both from Czech republic. For me, Portuguese will be fourth language. But it will be the first time for me to live (and my wife) to live in some other country.

I’m looking forward to the adventure!


Welcome, @jan1. I love your story - very adventurous. Best of luck with your Portuguese journey (both the language and the country!) :sunglasses:

I’m from Toronto, Canada. My dad’s side of the family is from the Azores and my mom’s side from the continent. I grew up hearing a mixture of both dialects, but never really learned to speak the language fluently. I’ve been speaking and understanding Portuguese very brokenly but today, but grandmother bought me access to the program for my 30th birthday :slight_smile:

My husband and I are considering moving to Portugal at some point, so not only will it help me better understand my relatives but it would also be extremely important to learn if we do decide to make the move.

Well, several reason. My husband, son and I moved to Madeira last year (before we knew about a pandemic). I have several reasons to learn. At the moment my son and I both use practiceportuguese.com (he is 8 years old). He attends a Portuguese school. Thus I need to speak Portuguese in order to be part of the community I live in, help my son to have a successful school career, and very importantly I would love to practice my profession as an Occupational Therapist here. I will need to obtain a C2 level, but so far after studying at an Academia and the University, I find this is the most effective way for me to learn Portuguese. I would also love to be able to study my Masters in Occupational Therapy here in Portugal!