brazil payment methods

Hello from today’s Dica (tip)! Let’s learn more vocabulary in Portuguese!
Today we’ll talk about a topic relevant to the vocabulary used in restaurant settings: Brazilian payment methods.

In our last Dicas (tips) video, we learned about shopping phraseshow to ask for the bill as well as purchases in cash and installments. Today we’ll learn about how to pay.

Brazilian payment methods


Paying in cash is one of the most common payment methods in Brazil. From street sellers to fancy restaurants,  cash is the most accepted and typical payment method. There are certain situations in which you can receive your salary in cash, despite the majority of Brazilians being owners of a bank account. If you intend to use money don’t forget to check our safety tips.

Debit or Credit Card

The second most used payment method, right after cash. Bars, restaurants, some street vendor, basically, all places will accept payments with credit/debit cards within big cities. Here is a list of Brazilian card companies as well as international card companies that are accepted:

American Express
Cartão BNDES
Diners Club

Remember, if you are using an intentional card, the best option is credit.


Practically non-existent in many countries, paying with checks is still a valid payment method used in Brazil, but that is slowly drifting away. Checks do not provide any safety nor security between the customer and the store. It is for this same reason that the Conselho Monetário Nacional has suggested and promoted eliminating the acceptance of check payments in the hopes of avoiding frauds related to these types of scenarios.

Boleto Bancário – Payment Slip

Boleto Bancario’s are a type of payment slips, or money orders, often used for utility bills, but can also be issued for payments of online purchases. It’s can be mailed home or printed from the respective website and/or institution. This paper consists of information of the establishment the payment is being made to, along with an expiry date, the value that must be paid, and a barcode. This type of payment method is regulated and controlled by Bacen (Banco Central).

Formas de Pago en Brasil

In order to pay a boleto bancário you just have to type the barcode number or use a barcode reader. ATMs in Brasil have barcode readers. Alternatively, you can also head to your local Loteria House or any bank to make the payment in person.


Carnê is a payment method often used for high price purchases, such as a car or a house. When you do this kind of purchases you receive a book in which there are a series of boletos that must be paid each month. Once the whole carnê is paid we say it has been quitado (taken away).

Online Payments

Brasil is the country with the most developed e-commerce in Latin America. In order to make online purchases, you can use two main payment methods: credit card or boleto bancário. Depending on the website, don’t forget to verify whether or not you need a CPF number to complete your payment.

Practice a bit more!

With the following Dica (tip) video, you can learn the pronunciation of the Brazilian payment methods we’ve learned about today.

Today we learned the different payment methods use in Brazil.
See you in the next A Dica do Dia (Tip of the Day)!


Ler esta Dica em português                
Click on the links below to see more related Dicas
Shopping Phrases in Portuguese
Asking for the bill in Portuguese
Cash or installment purchases in Portuguese
Restaurant vocabulary in Portuguese
Drinks in Portuguese
Restaurant phrases in Portuguese
Dialogue in Portuguese at the restaurant