2017 IFBC Travel Survival Guide: Costa Rican Spanish You'll Need!

Survival Guide

Jason Lake

Thursday, July 13, 2017 7:15 PM GMT

If you’re heading to Costa Rica for the International Football Betting Conference, you’ll need to know more than just the NFL odds – you’ll also need to pick up some of the lingo.

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Have you ever been to Costa Rica? If not, now’s your chance: The first annual International Football Betting Conference is coming up August 4-5 at the Sheraton Resort & Casino in Escazu. Last time out, we gave you some tips about what to expect when you arrive in this Central American paradise. Now it’s time to pick up some of the local dialect. Even if you speak Spanish, you might want to learn some basic Costa Rican Spanish phrases to help your trip run more smoothly.

First, a pro tip for all you NFL and NCAAF betting enthusiasts out there: Costa Rica is pronounced with a long oh, like this: KOH-stah REE-kah. Nobody likes having the name of their country mispronounced. Here are some other phrases worth learning, along with how and when to say them.
 

Why is This Going To Be The Coolest Betting Conference in History? Learn About the IFBC Here! 

Buenas! (BWAY-nahs!): All-purpose greeting, short for buenas dias (“good day”) or buenas noches (“good night”), et al.

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Anytime.
 

Hola, como esta? (OH-lah, KOH-moh EH-stah?): Slightly more formal greeting. “Hi, how are you?”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Meeting someone for the first time.
 

Muy bien, gracias, y usted? (MWAY BEE-ehn, GRAH-see-ahs, ee OO-stehd): “I’m fine, thanks, and you?” Note: Don’t pronounce the ‘see’ sound in gracias with a lisp. That’s Castillian Spanish.

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Meeting someone formally for the first time.
 

Cuanto vale? (KWAHN-toh VAH-lay): “How much does it cost?”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Purchasing anything.
 

Como que esta denegada?! (KOH-moh KAY EH-stah DAY-nay-GAH-dah): “What do you mean, declined?”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Purchasing credits at the casino with a credit/debit card.
 

Hagalo otro ves. Hay plata en esa tarjeta! (HAH-gah-loh OH-troh VAYS. ah-YAY PLAH-tah ayn AY-sah tar-HAY-tah): “Run it again. There’s money on that card!”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Purchasing credits at the casino with a tapped-out credit/debit card.
 

CoNo! Necesito tres mas cervesas para el Zarpe! (KOH-noh! neh-ceh-SEE-toh TRAY-ehs mahs sehr-VAY-sahs PAH-rah ell ZAHR-pay!): “Dammit! I need to get three more beers in before last call!”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Fifteen minutes before last call.
 

Estamos cerrado. Va jalando! (ay-STAH-mohs sehr-RAH-doh. VAH hah-LAHN-doh): “We’re closed. Shove off.”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Fifteen minutes after the bar has closed.
 

Que? Nos perecemos un par de putas baratas? (KAY? nohs peh-reh-SAY-mohs oohn PAHR day POOH-tahs BAH-rah-tahs? ): “What do we look like, a couple of cheap whores?”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Twenty minutes after the bar has closed.
 

Mae... cuantas botellas de Dom Perignon se ordeno ella??? (MY-eh... KWAN-tahs boh-TAY-ee-yas day DOHM pehr-REEG-nohn say ohr-DAY-noh ay-EE-yah?): “Dude... How many bottles of Dom Perignon did she order?”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Paying your hotel bill.
 

Espera. Dejame explicar... no es como perece. (eh-SPEH-rah. day-HAH-may ex-plee-CAHR... noh ess KOH-moh payr-AY-say.): “Wait. Let me explain... it’s not the way it looks.”

Situation Where Phrase May Be Needed: Explaining your hotel bill to your boss/significant other/parole officer.

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