17

In English I might say thanks instead of thank you. In Portuguese I'd say valeu as an informal obrigado or, for a big thank you to a friend, you can also informally say obrigadão (the augmentative).

Does Spanish any similar, informal thank-yous? Perhaps regional or slang words.

  • I've read graciñas (diminutive à la gallega), but I don't know if it's actually used in real life even in Galicia; probably more of an internet slang thing. – Paco Oct 6 '17 at 10:37
  • 1
    I believe gracias is both formal and informal. Could you provide an example on a case where you would need such expression? I can think on some wordings, only that they may not sound informal but a bit rude. – fedorqui Oct 7 '17 at 11:13
  • From personal experience as a non-native speaker in Mexico, trying to be informal does not always work well. Native speakers know how to do it, but with non-native speakers it may sound forced. If you are resorting to Stack Exchange, you may have not learned the informal word in the context of the nation, demographic, social circle, etc., in which you intend to use it. I prefer to stay formal. Informality will come out naturally and without pause when you are ready. – masonesq Oct 8 '17 at 19:32
  • @Paco well, graciñas for the tip anyway. I'm thinking of visiting galicia some time this coming year, so I'll investigate ;) – Some_Guy Oct 8 '17 at 22:38
  • There's a shortening used in chatting: "grax", but that's not a real word, just a chat-slang that is not used anywhere else, and it's not even correct. I can't think abour any other word because, as ferdoqui says, gracias can be both formal or informal. It's really universal. – FGSUZ Feb 12 '18 at 19:04
18

I think that gracias is the most basic, standard way to say thank you in Spanish. If you want more options, you have to seek upwards:

  • Muchas gracias (thanks a lot).
  • Muchísimas gracias (thank you very much).
  • Se lo agradezco (I thank you).
  • Se lo agradezco en el alma / de corazón / sinceramente / enormemente / etc. (I sincerely thank you / from the bottom of my heart / and so on).

Nonetheless, some of the more formal options can be exaggeratedly deformed for comical relief:

  • Agradecido quedo (I remain [yours], in appreciation).
  • Que Dios te lo pague con muchos hijos (may God bless you with lots of children). Particularly funny among young people who don't care about having children, of course.

So, I'm afraid that in Spanish if you want more informal ways to say gracias you'll have to be a bit creative...

  • 1
    +1 for the option of using exaggerated formality for comic effect, thanks for your response! – Some_Guy Oct 6 '17 at 11:37
  • 2
    :-) Nunca había oído lo de "con muchos hijos". En Colombia es muy frecuente el "Dios se lo pague" o "Dios le pague" pero simplemente hasta ahí. Otra muy frecuente es "mil gracias" y exagerando "un millón de gracias" – DGaleano Oct 6 '17 at 12:54
  • 1
    También lo he escuchado con "Mi Dios le pague". De hecho es costumbre, al menos en mi familia, decirlo a quien preparó/sirvió la comida. Y lo de "con muchos hijos" no sabría si me dan las gracias o me desean penurias ;) – Mauricio Martinez Oct 6 '17 at 13:14
  • 2
    @Mörkö asking for sarcastic ways to say "gracias" could be another great question. ;-) You can just say "gracias" with a sarcastic intonation, or go for the famous "gracias por nada" (thanks for nothing). – Charlie Oct 6 '17 at 20:11
  • 1
    "I think that gracias is the most informal way to say thank you in Spanish." I think that is misleading. It is just standard. – Lambie Nov 9 '18 at 14:08
9

In Chile we also say "te pasaste" to thank and congratulate. But beware, because in other countries it probably means the opposite ("you have exceeded negatively").

  • 2
    In Spain we also use it for example when someone gives a great present to us and we think we did not deserve it. – fedorqui Oct 7 '17 at 11:12
  • In Peru you can also say "te pasaste". – Ricardo Feb 13 '18 at 12:39
  • In Mexico I don't think this would go over well, because "te pasaste" is used so much in a negative sense, for example when the soup is inedible because you had a horrible accident with the salt shaker. So thanks Rodrigo for warning people in other countries. – aparente001 Mar 11 '18 at 19:49
  • @aparente001 I think the implication is probably regional and contextual in Mexico, though. Over where I'm from using te pasaste in the context of far exceeding a requirement, either in an action or by means of giving a gift the recipient finds undeserved, it's well understood to be either negative or positive depending on the context – psosuna Nov 9 '18 at 3:42
  • In that sense, in English, we say: You went out of way [to do x for me]. Whereas, in Spain, it means: You went to far [and were rude, for example]. – Lambie Nov 9 '18 at 23:01
6

Muy amable

(Mexico at least)

Sometimes this is used in conjunction with "gracias," but it can stand on its own if you have to or want to be especially succinct. For example, I was a bit disoriented when driving in a strange city recently, pulled over to ask a woman who was standing on the corner chatting on the phone, noticed she was speaking in Spanish on the phone, and asked her in Spanish if I should turn at that corner to get to the bus station. It was possible I might find that I was blocking traffic, so I only said, "Muy amable." Where the full version is "Gracias, muy amable," or "Gracias, señora, muy amable." (Roughly equivalent to "Thank you, you're an angel.") This is not slang, it's gracious speech that anyone can use comfortably. (Not that I have anything against slang, but you need to know what is and what isn't slang.)

Note: I forgot to include a literal translation of "muy amable": [That is] very kind [of you].

(Esto / Ud.) me ayudó mucho

This would work in any language. If you want to show your appreciation for something someone did, or information provided, and you don't want to repeat "thank you" for the umpteenth time, you could say (This / You) was very helpful [for me].

  • will me ayudaste mucho work? – nylypej Nov 9 '18 at 15:25
  • @nylypej - Sure. If you want something that fits culturally in Mexico, "muy amable" or a longer, more flowery version, can't be beat. – aparente001 Nov 13 '18 at 0:28
4

If Latin American slang is acceptable for your use case, in Chilean Spanish we use "vale" as a very informal "gracias".

  • 8
    That's cheating. From my (limited) experiences in Spanish speaking countries, I think I worked out that vale means pretty much everything. – Some_Guy Oct 6 '17 at 16:00
  • (I'm kidding of course, thanks for the help!) – Some_Guy Oct 6 '17 at 16:00
2

Here in Mexico we sometimes use Chido that also means good, great or funny.

  • 1
    Hello and welcome to Spanish Language. This is indeed answering the question, but it would benefit from some further explanation. Could you edit adding some examples, references, etc as described in How to Answer? – fedorqui Oct 7 '17 at 9:17
  • so would you actually say "chido" to someones as a reply to them doing something? – Some_Guy Oct 8 '17 at 22:42
  • @Some_Guy - I believe it's an informal thank-you, given as an off-hand, one-word response. – aparente001 Mar 11 '18 at 19:44
2

In certain areas in Mexico, it's common to express gratitude with enthusiasm, in a way that a word for thank you is not explicitly necessary. This would likely be the most vulgar way of saying thank you that is positive and acceptable among people, especially peers.

This is slang and language you would not use in a formal setting or with superiors, but among friends, if someone gives you a gift or brings you something you wanted (especially when it's hard to find or to acquire), you are able to use phrases that congratulate the person who has gotten you said gift for their ability to acquire it.

See, for example:

¡Wey, te la rifas, me encantan estas galletas!
(Here, te la rifas is regional slang for something akin to you're so badass)

Another answer said it before, but in order to say thank you in ways that are more vulgar than gracias, you'll have to be a special kind of creative.

1

Generally people in Latinamerica just say "Gracias" or "que Dios te lo pague, porque yo no puedo" (may God pay you because I don't have enough to pay for such a big favor) because you don't know how to give back the favor someone has done to you, or if someone has lent you money and you won't be able to give it back.

Another thing people can say is "Dios te bendiga" (God bless you) or "Me fue de mucha ayuda" (it helped me a lot).

  • You should really add a note about the humorous nature of the second sentence. Else a foreign speaker might think "Dios te lo pague, porque yo no" is a good way of saying thanks in any context, and get people offended. – walen Feb 12 '18 at 8:48
  • @walen comment is correct. First you should only say "Que Dios te lo pague" or "Dios le pague". Second this is not humorous. Religion is a big part of LA culture and one might think that it is better if god pays you instead of me because you will be better off (given that one believes in god). Dios le pague is a perfectly serious form of saying thank you – DGaleano Feb 12 '18 at 13:10
  • @DGaleano Just to be clear, mentioning God is OK on my watch, and it is done in Spain too. The part that I found humorous (or rather cheeky, or even disrespectful) was the original answer's "Que Dios te lo pague, porque yo no". It sounded like "I'm not paying you, lol, ask God instead". Changing that to "Que Dios te lo pague, porque yo no puedo", like you did in your edit, adds a bit of humbleness to the sentence, enough to make it acceptable. But not the first version IMO. – walen Feb 12 '18 at 13:29
  • @walen completamente de acuerdo. – DGaleano Feb 12 '18 at 13:36
0

Since the famous Argentine band Soda Stereo gave their last live concert in 1997, it's been rather common in Argentina to use the expression Gracias totales, employed by their late vocalist Gustavo Cerati (hear it at the end of this video or else here). It's definitely informal, but it's got the right vintage to sound at least familiar to almost everyone in Argentina, and possibly elsewhere (Soda Stereo was well-known in most of Latin America).

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.