Means of Transport in Portuguese

example of means of transportation in portuguese, with a group of people using a trolley in santa teresa. headline: "eles andaram de bondinho em santa teresa!"

Say you’ve just landed in Rio de Janeiro, and you need to get to your hotel. How do you call a cab in Portuguese? Or how do you find the closest bus stop? Wait, how do you even say “bus”? Don’t you wish you had your own Portuguese tutor close by, just to guide you through the ins and outs of it all? In today’s Dica we’ll tell you all about means of transport in Portuguese. So don’t panic! You’ll be able to move around just fine from the airport to your hotel and to Rio & Learn for your Portuguese lessons! So let’s go!

Most Common Means of Transport in Portuguese

You can watch this video made by one of our Portuguese teachers to learn the pronunciation of the means of transport in Portuguese:

Vocabulary for Most Common Transports


Where is the Nearest Bus Stop?

So now you know that ônibus is how we say “bus” in Portuguese. But what if you need to get a bus? Where do you get it? And how do you ask someone where the nearest bus stop is? Here’s a list of locations where you can catch any means of transport in Portuguese:

o ponto de ônibusbus stop
a estação de ônibus / a rodoviáriabus station
a estação de metrôsubway station
a estação de tremtrain station
o aeroportoairport

Check out how to use it with some examples:

Onde fica o ponto de ônibus mais próximo?
Where is the nearest bus stop?

Onde é o aeroporto Santos Dumont?
Where is the Santos Dumont airport?

review the vocabulary for means of transport in portuguese: carro, táxi, ônibus, trem, metrô, moto, avião, bicicleta, cavalo, pé. review locals for transport in portuguese: ponto de ônibus - bus stop, a estação de ônibus / a rodoviária - bus station, a estação de metrô - subway station, a estação de trem - train station, o aeroporto - airport.

Going from Here to There

de or a? when we talk about transport, usually we use verb + de. examples: ela anda de carro. eu andei de avião semana passada. vocês vão de ônibus? eles vão de navio para a europa. exception: we use verb + a when talking about walking and horses. examples: eles andam a cavalo. você vai a pé?

First things first, you’d better have learned the present tense of ir in Portuguese. Remember that bit about prepositions? Those are especially important! We need the use either para or a to indicate the place we’re going to. For example:

Eu vou para o trabalho.
I go to work.

So far, so good? Great! Now, what if you want to specify how you intend to go somewhere? Essentially, how do you talk about the means of transport that you use? For that you’ll need either the preposition de or a. Let’s take a look:

Eu vou para o trabalho de trem.
I go to work by train.

Eu vou para o trabalho a pé.
I go to work on foot.

Keep in mind that de and a are not interchangeable. We use de with all means of transport in Portuguese except for only two:  and cavalo. Essentially, if you need some sort of non-living device to get you from one place to another, you need to use de.

Eu vou para a festa de metrô.
go to the party by subway.

Nós vamos de carro para Búzios.
We go to Búzios by car.

Eles vão para a fazenda a cavalo.
They go to the farm by horse.

board with examples of use for prepositions plus transport. subject + ir + para + local + de / a + transport. examples: eu vou para o trabalho de bicicleta. você vai para o carnaval a pé. elas vão para a rio & learn de táxi? or subject +  ir + de / a + transport + para + local. examples: ele vai de carro para a festa. nós vamos de ônibus para cabo frio. vocês vão de patinete para a escola?

Means of Transport in Portuguese + Andar

Andar? Isn’t that to walk? Yes, yes, I know, it sounds confusing. Brazilians sure are strange creatures. But that’s no reason to give up on learning Portuguese, right? We can use andar to talk about using a particular means of transport in Portuguese.

Examples with Means of Transport + Andar

Eles nunca andam de avião.
They never travel by airplane.

Nós andamos de bicicleta todo domingo em Copacabana.
We ride a bicycle every Sunday in Copacabana.

É mais barato andar de ônibus do que andar de táxi.
It’s cheaper to travel by bus than to travel by taxi.

Ela adora andar a cavalo.
She loves riding a horse.

Catching a Cab + Pegar

Now, let’s be done with it! How do you ask for a cab? Or how do you say you want to catch a bus? We use a very simple verb for all public means of transport: pegar. It also applies for cabs and ubers, though it doesn’t really work with carromoto or bicicleta. Oh, and don’t worry, pegar is a regular verb!

Examples with Means of Transport in Portuguese + Pegar

Eu sempre pego um táxi para ir para a Lapa.
I always get a cab to go to Lapa.

Nós pegamos um ônibus para ir para Petrópolis.
We take a bus to go to Petrópolis.

Eles pegam o avião para São Paulo hoje.
They take the plane to São Paulo today.

Você pega o metrô para ir para o trabalho?
Do you take the subway to go to work?

Onde pego o trem?
Where do I take the train?

review verbs andar and pegar with transports. subject + pegar +
 indifinite or definite pronoun + object. examples: Eu pego um ônibus para chegar até a Lapa. Você pegou o carro para ir para a sua casa? Elas pegaram o táxi para sair de lá. 
subject + andar + de / a + transport + object. examples: Ele andou de carro rapidamente. Nós andamos a cavalo todos os dias. Vocês andaram de bicicleta para ir ao mercado.

Now it’s your turn!

A) Fill in the blank with the ir and a means of transport:

  1. Eles _____ para casa __________.
  2. Hoje nós __________ para a Lapa.
  3. Você __________ para a escola?
  4. Amanhã eu __________ para o Sul.
  5. Vocês _____ para a Pedra da Gávea __________?

B) Complete the sentences with andar and the correct means of transport in Portuguese:

  1. Na Holanda, muitas pessoas __________.
  2. Eu não __________ porque tenho medo de ficar em subsolos.
  3. O brasileiro __________ para ir para a Europa.
  4. Nós __________ quando estamos na fazenda.
  5. Você não __________ porque tem sempre muito trânsito.

C) Write a sentence with pegar by following the example:

(nós – táxi – casa) Nós pegamos um táxi para casa.

  1. (eu – metrô – Cinelândia)
  2. (eles – ônibus – aeroporto)
  3. (você – avião – Brasil)
  4. (ela – uber – Jardim Botânico)
  5. (nós – trem – Minas Gerais)

Special Means of Transport in Portuguese: VLT

Three friends hanging out in vlt in Rio de janeiro. Example of means of transportation in portuguese: Eles pegam o VLT para ir para a RioLIVE!

There are some honorable mentions to add to the list of means of transport in Portuguese. What most people would call a “tram”, for example, most Brazilians know only the acronym VLT. VLT stands for veículo leve sobre trilhos (light vehicle over trails). It’s a feature of a lot of capital cities in Brazil: Rio de Janeiro, Maceió, Fortaleza and Recife, for example. And a lot of other cities plan on building VLT rails soon.

The most common means of transport in Rio is the bus. What about in your country? That’s it for today! Don’t forget to subscribe and till next time!

Click on the links below to see more related Dicas
Present Tense of Ir in Portuguese
Past Tense Ir in Portuguese
Boat in Portuguese



  1. Eles vão para casa de metro/de carro/a pé/etc.
  2. Hoje nós vamos _______ para a Lapa.
  3. Você vai _______ para a escola?
  4. Amanhã eu vou ______ para o Sul.
  5. Vocês vão para a Pedra da Gávea __________?


  1. Na Holanda, muitas pessoas andam de bicicleta.
  2. Eu não ando de metrô porque tenho medo de ficar em subsolos.
  3. O brasileiro anda de avião para ir para a Europa.
  4. Nós andamos a cavalo quando estamos na fazenda.
  5. Você não andam de carro/táxi porque tem sempre muito trânsito.


  1. Eu pego um/o metrô para a Cinelândia.
  2. Eles pegam um/o ônibus para o aeroporto.
  3. Você pega um/o avião para o Brasil.
  4. Ela pega um uber para o Jardim Botânico.
  5. Nós pegamos um/o trem para Minas Gerais.

This post is also available in: English Português (Portuguese) Español (Spanish)

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