Texting in Spanish: Abbreviations and Translations
Your Spanish skills are higher than ever, but could you understand texting abbreviations?
If you’re wondering what all those cryptic messages really mean, this detailed guide will make it clear!
While you spend most of your time doing verb drills and practicing pronunciation, Spanish slang in the form of texting certainly adds a bit of entertainment to the mix. Before you have to ask your native Spanish-speaking friend what they mean by “me 100to bien,” check out this guide and get familiar with Spanish texting!
Are you ready to impress your friends with some easy-to-grasp texting vocabulary, common abbreviations, and Spanish slang?
After you’re done reading this post, you will be chateando (chatting) in Spanish like a pro!
Texting Vocabulary in Spanish
Here’s a list of texting vocabulary to get you warmed up!
|Cell phone||el celular|
|Chatting||chatear / chateando|
|Messaging||mensajear / mensajeando|
|Texting||textear / texteando|
Here is a practical guide to Spanish texting slang, where you’ll find common texting abbreviations and frequently used phrases.
When teenage texting became a “thing”, some rules for written Spanish were dropped. Texting slang doesn’t require the use of two marks in a question but only one. Yup! Just like in English. Here is an example:
¿Qué tal? becomes: Qué tal?
I’ve got to admit that I was a bit reluctant when I got into the world of cellphones, chatting, texting, using social media… but I have to be honest, it’s just so much simpler! So, whenever you see examples like this one on this post, don’t worry! It’s just how we text in Spanish.
One of the similarities between Spanish and English texting slang is the use of initials. Check out this list of common texting codes:
- dtb = Dios te bendiga. (God bless you.)
- gpi = Gracias por invitar. (Thanks for the invite.)
- ntc = No te creo. (I don’t buy it)
- ntp = No te preocupes. (Don’t worry.)
- pti = Para tu información. (For your information.)
- tmc = Te me cuidas. (Take care of yourself.)
- tqm = Te quiero mucho. (I love you.)
- tkm = Te kiero mucho. (I love you.)
PRO TIP! In Spanish, we use different ways to express our love for others. For instance, te quiero is a phrase that tells your friends and family you care about them. Te amo, on the other hand, is more applicable to romantic, strong feelings for a significant other.
Read more about Te Quiero vs Te Amo: Don’t Say the Wrong ‘I Love You’ in Spanish.
Skipping Letters in Spanish Texting
Language has always had a tendency to seek simplification and texting is a logical next step. Naturally, you want to simplify your messages but still be understood.
In Spanish, similar to English, skipping or replacing letters in a word leads to easy texting. Here are some ways to do that with texting abbreviations:
1. Skipping the First Letters of a Word
Sometimes, skipping the first letters of a word can give your texting a less serious tone, and even if it looks odd, you’ll get used to it in no time!
- Cuchame = Escúchame. (Listen to me.)
- Onde = Dónde. (Where.)
- Ola = Hola. (Hi/Hello.)
- Perame = Espérame. (Wait for me.)
PRO TIP! Perame is useful when you’re in the middle of a conversation and you’re interrupted for a moment but you don’t want the other person to think you left them “on read.” You can use this word to ask them to wait a second before you continue chatting.
- Stoy / Toy = Estoy. (I am.)
- Estoy bien = Stoy bien / toy bien (I’m good/okay.)
PRO TIP! The rule for estoy applies for all the conjugations of this verb, for example, estás or están become stas / tas or stan / tan.
- Tas bien? = ¿Estás bien? (Are you okay?)
- Tan bien? = ¿Están bien? (Are you okay?)
- Ta weno = Está bueno. (Okay / It’s okay)
This abbreviation replaces the first letters of bueno with the letter “W” because its sound is similar to -bue in conversational Spanish.
Use this to agree to something—if a friend asks:
Vamos el sábado?
Are we going on Saturday?
You can reply:
Ta weno, vamos.
Okay, let’s go.
- tonces / tons = Entonces. (So / then)
2. Skipping Letters in the Middle of the Word
Quite similar to the previous rule, you can also skip some letters in the middle of a word to sound less serious and to make your chatting faster. Here are some examples:
- Pos = Pues. (Then / So)
In this case, you omit the two letters in the middle and replace them with an “O”, which is the sound it makes in conversational Spanish.
So, let’s go.
Pos sí, es cierto.
Then yes, it’s true.
- Pa qué = ¿Para qué? (What for?)
Pa qué hiciste eso?
What did you do that for?
Pa qué vamos a ir?
What are we going for?
You can use this rule for similar questions like:
Pa quién = ¿Para quién? (For whom? / Who is it for?)
Pa quién es el regalo?
Who’s the gift for?
Pa dónde = ¿Para dónde? (Where to? / Where?)
Pa dónde vamos el viernes?
Where are we going on Friday?
- Tmb = También. (Too / As well)
- Vdd = Verdad. (Right? / I know, right? / To be honest.)
La vdd estoy cansado.
Tbh, I’m tired.
– Fue divertido salir hoy.
It was fun to go out today.
I know, right?
3. Uses of Letter “K” in Spanish Slang
A frequent way of skipping letters is by replacing two or more of them with one letter that sounds the same.
The letter “K” can replace letters with identical sounds—“kah”—, and it can be used in words that begin with qu-.
- Aki = Aquí. (Here.)
- K = Qué. (What.)
PRO TIP! You can also use this abbreviation to type expressions like:
- K bueno = Qué bueno. (That’s good.)
- K dijo = ¿Qué dijo? (What did he/she say?)
- Kienes = Quiénes. (Who.)
- Kiero = Quiero. (I want.)
- Ksa = Casa. (House.)
- Komo = Cómo. (How.)
- Kual = Cuál. (Which.)
- Por k / Pork = Por qué / Porque. (Why/ Because.)
In some cases, it’s possible to replace the whole word for some letters with the exact sounds, like:
Kyc = cállese = shut up
- k = /kah/
- y = /ye/
- se = /ce/
Even if this term sounds rude, it’s really the opposite. Let’s say you’re chatting with your best friends and somebody starts teasing you about a person that you’re into. You want them to stop talking about it and change the subject, so you can text:
Kyc, no hablemos de eso.
Shut up, let’s not talk about that.
4. Letter “Q” as a Texting Abbreviation
This letter can be used like the letter “K” seen above. Its sound can replace the word qué, or it can be used without the “U” that follows in words like quién or quiero.
- Q haces = ¿Qué haces? (What are you doing?)
- Qienes = Quiénes. (Who?)
- Qiero = Quiero. (I want…)
PRO TIP! Using one letter to skip two or more that make the same sound applies to other letters like “T,” “M,” “C,” “B.” Take a look at these texting abbreviations:
- T quiero / t qiero = Te quiero. (I love you.)
- M gusta = Me gusta. (I like it.)
- No c = No sé. (I don’t know.)
- Bb = Bebé. (Baby / Babe.)
Symbols And Numbers That Sound Like Words
One of the oldest texting practices in Spanish is the use of symbols whose name sounds like a word. For example, the symbol “x”—used to multiply—is pronounced por in Spanish, so it replaces this word in any phrase that uses it.
In some cases, you can simplify a whole question by using as many abbreviations as possible, like:
- xq = ¿Por qué? / Porque. (Why / Because.)
- xfa = por fa (Por favor) (Please.)
- x nada = Por nada. (You’re welcome.)
- x2 = x2 is the Spanish equivalent of “same.” (Use this texting code to express that you relate to the other person’s situation or feeling.)
Numbers can replace letters because some of them sound the same. If you want to try it, just say these texting abbreviations out loud and you’ll see what I’m talking about.
- Salu2 = Saludos. (Greetings.)
Nos vemos, salu2.
See you, greetings.
The English translation for this word sounds a bit formal, but if you use the Spanish slang version of it, it becomes a fun casual abbreviation.
- Yen2 = Yendo. (I’m going / I’m on it / On my way.)
If a friend texts you:
Vas a ir a la fiesta?
Are you going to the party?
On my way.
- 100pre = Siempre. (Always.)
- 100to = Siento. (I feel like…)
Me 100to bien.
I feel good.
Me 100to feliz.
I feel happy.
- 5mentarios = Sin comentarios. (I’m speechless / No comments / No words.)
- Yo + / – = Yo más / Yo menos.
These terms can have different meanings if we translate them to English, for example:
I love you.
I love you more.
-No tengo idea.
I have no idea.
Neither do I.
Probably the simplest texting trick in Spanish is to skip the space bar and type words together. Check out this list and become an expert in texting abbreviations!
- Keseso = ¿Qué es eso? = What’s that?
This abbreviation combines the “K” used to omit letters and joining words to type faster!
- Voy a =Voa. (I’m going to / I will.)
Voa ir al cine
I’m going to the movies
- Aber = A ver. (Let’s see / Let’s hear it.)
Use this expression to ask someone to show or tell you something, like:
Acabo de adoptar un perro.
I’ve just adopted a dog.
Te propongo algo…
I have a proposition for you…
Let’s hear it
- Sisoy = Si soy. (I relate to…)
If a friend sends you a meme, and you know it’s relatable to you, you can simply reply with Sisoy. It’s simple, fun, and everyone is using it these days!
- Asies = Así es. (That’s right.)
- Ayno = ¡Ay, no! (Oh no!)
Ayno is a casual way of expressing you’re sorry for something about a story the other person is telling you. It’s useful to express that you’re paying attention. It’s not meant to be used for serious or sensitive topics.
- Namás = Nada más. (Just that / Only that.)
Necesitas algo más?
Do you need anything else?
No, namás eso.
No, just that.
Namás me visto y me voy a la fiesta.
I just have to get dressed and then I’ll leave for the party.
Shorter words have become popular in Spanish slang; not only in texting and chats but also in spoken conversations.
These are some trendy words that you can use as texting abbreviations.
- Amix = Amigo/amiga. (Friend.)
Amix, cómo estás?
Friend, how are you?
Sounds funny in English, doesn’t it? More suitable translations for this expression are “dude” or “girl,” whenever you’re opening or closing a conversation.
- Grax = Gracias. (Thanks.)
- Vamo = Vamos. (Let’s go.)
OMG! Look at all these words you can include in your messages to sound like a native Spanish speaker!
The first two expressions on this list are exclusive to situations that aren’t serious, too personal, or delicate.
An expression used to express disappointment, regret, or that you’re sorry about something. For example, a friend texts:
Llegué tarde al trabajo.
I was late for work.
You can simply reply with chale and let them know you’re sorry about it.
- F—pronounced “ephe”
I started to see this expression used as a way of paying respects to someone in memes on social media, and soon enough it caught on in texting and conversations. This use of F has its origin in a video game, in which the main character’s best friend passes away and a funeral is held during the game. An on-screen message encourages players to pay their respects using the letter “F.” Taken as a joke instead of something serious, the letter became popular to express how bad a situation is—quite similarly to chale.
- Ajá = Aha
Ajá expresses agreement or that you are listening intently to someone as they speak (or write). It’s useful in texting when a friend is writing a long story and you’re waiting for them to finish to give your final opinion, comment, or to ask something about it.
- Nel = No
Nel is similar to saying “nope” in English. It’s a colloquial way of declining or denying something that helps you sound more laid-back and natural.
Ready to Test Your Knowledge?
Before you jump into the group chat with your knowledge of texting abbreviations in Spanish, take this test to make sure you’ve got it all right!
How would you respond to these texts?
1. Respond negatively to: ¿Irás a la fiesta?
2. Express your regret to: No podré almorzar contigo.
3. Te voy a enseñar mi nueva laptop.
4. Sí, puedo llevarte en mi auto.
5. Express you’re in the same situation as: Estoy atrasado con la tarea.
6. Respond positively to: ¿Quieres venir a mi casa?
7. ¿Nos veremos el sábado?
8. Estoy muy triste.
9. Ellos irán
10. Y luego, no encontraba las llaves del carro…
Become a Fearless Spanish Speaker
Learning a new language not only broadens your spectrum of cultures, places, and experiences but it also has a positive impact on our health.
According to a study about the benefits of being bilingual, speaking two or more languages helps you to increase your attention levels and task-switching capacities. It also improves the processing power of the human brain and delays cognitive decline. While it’s easier to learn a new language in the early years of life, mastering it as an adult is just as possible.
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Your health, your life experiences, and your children can all benefit from learning Spanish today! So sign up for a FREE class with a native speaker now to try out our student-tailored, 1-on-1 Spanish classes.
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