Que tal in Portuguese not the Same as in spanish

Que tal in Portuguese has a different meaning as in Spanish. Portuguese and Spanish are different and distinct languages,  each with their own unique traits and characteristics,  even though they have some similarities. The most obvious differences are in pronunciation.

Que tal in Portuguese

Image: Cafe House conversation “Que tal in Portuguese not the Same as in Spanish”

Just like British and American English have, there are some significant differences between Brazilian Portuguese and European Portuguese. Spanish and Portuguese share a great number of words that are spelled exactly  the same but their meanings are little or very different in their respective languages.

It has been suggested that words of French origin are significantly more numerous in Portuguese than those in Spanish. We also find a number of cases in which the Spanish word is derived from Arabic, while the same word in Portuguese is derived from Celtic or Latin.


Que tal in Spanisch =  How do you do?


Que tal is a very small little expression that we can use in many different situations. What confuses people, who are learning Portuguese, is that the Spanish language also has exact same expression, but they use it as a Greeting (how are you? Or how do you do?). But in Portuguese it is not a greeting.


Que tal in Portuguese =  How about..?


We will learn now how the small little expression Que tal is used in Portuguese. First of all if it is not greetings as in Spanish, then what exactly Que tal means in Portuguese? Well the answer is Que tal in Portuguese means what you think about?; how about? (used to ask for an opinion about a suggestion).

que-tal-meaning in portuguese


A small example is: “Que tal irmos ao movie? ?”    which in Portuguese means  “How about we go for a movie?”

Imagine a situation wherein Jack and Rose are planning to go for a cinema movie tonight. This is how they will converse:

Jack: o que você está fazendo esta noite?

Rose: Que tal irmos ao cinema?

Jack: Tá ótimo. Te pego às 8.


Jack: What are you doing tonight?

Rose: How about we go to the cinema?

Jack: Sounds great. I will pick you up at 8.


Few more examples with Que tal

Situation 1:

After movie, Jack asks:

* O que você quer comer?

=What do you want to eat?

Rose replies:

*Que tal chinês

=How about Chinese


Situation 2:

When Rose was getting ready to meet Jack, she asked her sister:

*Que tal esse vestido? Estou bonita?

= How about this dress? Do I look pretty?

To which her sister replies:

* você está olhando muito bonita

= you are looking very pretty


Few more examples:

Jack: o que você quer fazer amanhã?

= what you want to do tomorrow?

Rose: Que tal irmos nadar?

= How about going swimming?

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