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Costa Rica Spanish for expats and tourists: Part 6

January 11, 2021

You can’t call yourself fluent in Costa Rican Spanish unless you understand its slang.

Over the past several weeks, we brought you Parts 1,2, 3, 4 and 5 of our Tico Talk series on tiquismos or costarriqueñismos.

Ready for Part 6? Here you go, my friends!

Costa Rican Slang, Part 6

Achantado/a: lazy. Perezoso/a is a synonym.

Acois: Slang for “here.” Aquí and acá are the more common Spanish words for “here.”

Agarrar volados: To take advice or pointers. Tomar consejos is the better-known expression in Spanish.

Ah bueno: Whatever.

Al chile: Right! Really!

Al rato: Perhaps. Quizás or a lo mejor are synonyms. 

Como maleante perseguido: To move quickly. Como alma que lleva el diablo is a synonym.

Echarse la soga al cuello: To get yourself into a mess … or to get married.

Pega: A pain in the neck. Dolor de culo (vulgar), or pain in the butt, is also used.

¡Qué va!: No way!

Vivazo/a: A smart ass.

Volar pata: To walk. Trolear is also used here.

¡Ya voy!: Give me a break! Ya voy en carrera is another version.

Tiquismo, or Costa Rican expression of the week:

Cuando la rana eche pelo: When a frog grows hair, which means “never.”

Christopher Howard has been conducting monthly relocation/retirement tours and writing retirement guidebooks for over 30 years. See www.liveincostarica.com. He is also the author of the one-of-a-kind bestselling, “Guide to Costa Rican Spanish,” that can be purchased through Amazon.

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