Argentine slang

The two key elements that define Argentine slang are: the sh sound for the letter ‘y’ and the double ‘l’ (for example, posho instead of pollo, shuvia instead of lluvia) and the use of the pronoun “vos” instead of “tú”. From Wanderlust Spanish we know that learning Spanish is not only studying grammar and its verb tenses, but it is also important to know how we speak, what we say among friends and what are our most famous slang expressions. That’s why we bring you the funniest phrases of Argentines:

Che, boludo is the quintessential Argentinian phrase. Anyone who knows anything about Argentina knows this. Che is a synonym of Argentina. It’s where revolutionary Ernesto “Che” Guevara gets his name because he was always addressed with che. Some people believe it originates from the Italian “che” or “que” in Spanish. It can be loosely translated as “Hey”, a sort of segue into a conversation. Here you have an example:

“Che, querés salir a tomar cerveza?”
(Hey, you wanna go get a beer?)

“Bajá un cambio!”: It can be translated as “Chill Out! Relax!” and you can use when people are so stressful. Here you have an example:

-“I must say that I am concerned because there is an immediate and urgent problem”

-“Relax, everything is gonna be okay” (Bajá un cambio, todo va a estar bien)

¿Me estás cargando?: When you are faced with an unbelievable or absurd situation in Argentina the words, “are you freaking serious?” won’t cut it.

¡Qué quilombo!: it is used to refer to a mess, a messed-up or complicated situation.

¡Qué quilombo que es tu casa! => Your house is a mess!

¡No da!: Its closest meaning in English ranges from “it is not appropriate” to “it’s not gonna happen,” to “there is no reason for it.”

If you can accomplish this you are almost another Argentine in the crowd.

Do you want to know more about Spanish in Buenos Aires? Contact us!

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People love us!

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Wanderlust was my second home during my 5 months living in Buenos Aires. I got to know Argentina through this amazing school and experiences while studying with my professor, Vicky.

- Rich