50+ Peruvian Slang Words and Phrases

Peruvian slang words and phrases, known as jerga, can be heard throughout the country. You’ll also come across plenty of slang in Peru’s trashy and sensationalist tabloid newspapers. Even if you’ve perfected your spoken Spanish, some of these words may have you scratching your head. So, here are a few common slang expressions that you might hear while travelling in Peru.

Updated to include many of the suggestions left by readers. Thanks for the input, keep ’em coming!

Warning: If you are easily offended, which I hope you are not, please exercise caution when reading the comments at the end of the article. You will find some colorful language down there, but it all fits in with the Peruvian slang theme. Thanks.

HOW TO PERU QUICK TIP: All Peru Hop guides are proud local Peruvians who are happy to teach you some Peruvian slang words and phrases.

Peruvian Slang Words A-E

  • a su madre – a common expression of surprise, often shortened to just “asu!” Despite the presence of the word “mother,” the expression is not rude (but don’t go experimenting with “mother” expressions – you could get in trouble).
  • achorado — an aggresive or “low living” person (sometimes used to refer to “undesirable” types from slum areas).
  • al toque – right away, straight away. Bear in mind that “right away,” like mañana, could mean a few hours or a few weeks in Peru.
  • arrecho (a) — to be horny, turned on (estar arrecho).
  • asado – angry, irritated. Literally “roast” or “roasting,” so a visual expression.
  • bacán – cool
  • bamba – fake, imitation. You might hear this in Peruvian markets, where fake goods and fake money are both in circulation.
  • blanca – cocaine. Literally “white.”
  • brócoli – a homosexual man. Originates from cabro (below): cabro, cabrócoli, brócoli.
  • bróder — friend, amigo (from the English “brother”)
  • cabro – a homosexual or effeminate man.
  • calabaza — stupid, empty headed.
  • calato – naked.
  • causa — a close friend.
  • cocho (a) — an old person.
  • cojudo (a) — an idiot, dumbass.
  • conchudo – shameless, rascal.
  • costilla – girlfriend. Literally “rib,” a reference to the creation of Eve from Adam’s rib.
  • chamba – work, employment.
  • chancha – a collection of money between friends, normally to pay for beer. A whip-round (read more about drinking beer in Peru).
  • chato – short, used to describe a person (often used as a nickname).
  • charapa – the charapa (Podocnemis expansa) is a species of turtle found in the Peruvian Amazon region. The term charapa is used to refer to Peruvians from the jungle regions (generally derogatory, offensive if used in an aggressive or mocking manner).
  • chongo – whorehouse, brothel.
  • chela – a beer. The standard invitation is to go drink “un par de chelas” (a couple of beers); this normally turns into eight or more and you may find yourself cheleando all night long (find out which Peruvian beer is the best).
  • chévere – cool, great, awesome (like bacán)
  • chibolo – a young person, generally in their teens.
  • chibolero – a man who dates girls much younger than himself.
  • choche (also chochera) — friend.
  • choro — a thief.
  • chupar – to drink alcohol. Literally “to suck,” like “sucking on a beer”.
  • churro — an attractive or handsome man.
  • doble filo – bisexual. Literally “double edged.”

Peruvian Slang Words F-O

  • fercho — chauffer, driver (an example of syllable reversal in Peruvian slang: chofer becomes fercho).
  • figureti — a poser, show-off.
  • flaco (a) — boyfriend or girlfriend (lit. “skinny”).
  • florear — to lie, flatter or exaggerate, usually with the aim of getting something (a floro would be a type of lie)
  • fuiste – gone, the moment has passed, missed opportunity. “Ya fuiste!”
  • fumón – pot smoker.
  • germa — a girl or girlfriend.
  • grone – black, or a black-skinned person. An example of Peruvian slang where the order of the syllables has been reversed: negro = grone. You may see this used in graffiti, where Zona Grone means Black Zone, an Alianza Lima football fan tag.
  • huachimán – watchman (from the English word). A huachimán in Peru is a private security guard, often one who patrols a specific street or block at night.
  • huasca — the state of being drunk, wasted, or otherwise shitfaced (“Cómo vas a manejar si estás huasca?”). Not to be confused with Huascar, which is an Inca ruler, the name of Miguel Grau’s ship, and a bar in Tarapoto)
  • jale – a person’s attractiveness or sex-appeal. Literally a person’s “pull”: the ability to draw in the opposite sex.
  • jama — food (jamear — to eat).
  • jato — house.
  • jugador(a) – a player, womaniser, promiscuous person.
  • lechero — a lucky or fortunate person.
  • luca – one Peruvian Nuevo Sol (mil lucas = 1,000 soles).
  • mamacita – hot or sexy woman. Literally “little mama,” it’s not the most romantic expression, more an “Oh boy, check out that mamacita!” kind of thing.
  • mañoso – a slime bag, a person who is over familiar with women (often in a physical, touchy-feely way).
  • miércoles – literally “Wednesday,” but used instead of “mierda” (shit).
  • misio — poor, broke.
  • monse – stupid, dim-witted, slow.

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Peruvian Slang Words P-Z

  • paja — cool, awesome (like chévere).
  • pajear — to masturbate (a pajero would therefore be a… you know).
  • papaya — used to refer to the female sexual organ.
  • pata – guy. Used informally to refer to almost anyone. If there is a possessive involved (such as “mi pata,” “tu pata”) it refers to a friend (“my friend,” “your friend”).
  • pendejo (a) – a sly, sharp, but generally untrustworthy person.
  • pichanga – an informal football kick-around amongst friends.
  • piña – bad luck.
  • pituco — a wealthy person (typically implies a rich, arrogant, snobbish person). Read more about pitucos at Streets of Lima.
  • por las puras – to do something for nothing, no reason, a waste of time.
  • profe – short for “professor,” often used by Peruvian street vendors, shoe-shine guys etc to get the attention of well-dressed, business-like people walking down the street. It’s friendly and not disrespectful.
  • pucha – used instead of the much stronger “puta” (“bitch” or “whore”), as an expression of disgust, distaste, surprise, relief etc, not literally (and not in reference to a particular person). The origin of the word is disputed (see comments below).
  • roche – shame. “Que roche!” (“What a shame!”)
  • suzuki – dirty. A play on “sucio,” the Spanish word for dirty.
  • tombo – a policeman.
  • tonear — to party, to dance (tono — a party)
  • yapa — the extra (when you finish a glass of fruit juice, the vendor may top it up with the yapa, or extra, that remains in the jug).

Add to the Peruvian Slang Dictionary for Peru Travel

The above Peruvian slang words and phrases are some of the most commonly heard in Peru, but there are plenty more out there. Feel free to add to this little Peruvian slang dictionary in the comments box below. If you are looking for an immersive Peruvian experience we suggest you check out Peru Hop. They are a hop on hop off style bus company that take you safely off the beaten track while travelling through Peru. Thanks!

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  149 comments for “50+ Peruvian Slang Words and Phrases

  1. Elsa
    January 9, 2011 at 6:24 pm

    “pucha” is used instead of “puta” in Spanish the same way as “shoot” is used instead of “shit” in English. 🙂

    • buck1
      December 1, 2015 at 2:09 pm

      Best Slang with accurate definition you get the blessings from Chicago causa also known as choro partners in crimes peace from Lima.

  2. January 9, 2011 at 7:01 pm

    Hi Elsa, thanks for the comment.

    One of my favourite expressions is “pucha maquina”, something that the Tarapotinos seem to say all the time. I guess it’s a smooth way to say “puta madre”, but the use of “maquina” is quite strange. I love the way slang expressions develop, very interesting!



  3. February 11, 2011 at 6:37 pm

    Serpentina – I like that! I’ve heard some of those “pata” alternatives. “Causa” is a weird one. I’ve never heard “chochera” before. “Chochear”: to be gaga – according to my Pocket Oxford. Odd!

  4. Samantha Bangayan
    February 11, 2011 at 6:07 pm

    I’ve heard “serpentina” used to mean beer, if only for the similarity of the first syllable. =P

    Also, when my partner speaks with his friends, they often use “causa,” “chochera,” “choche,” “primo,” “hermano,” or “bro” to mean “friend,” like when they use “pata.” =)

  5. Andrea
    May 3, 2011 at 2:14 pm

    “pucha” IS NOT USED instead of the much stronger “puta” (“bitch” or “whore”).

    it’s more like

    “pucha, y ahora que hago” = Grrrr, and now what would i do

    “pucha, queda lejos”= i don’t know if i want to/can go, its too far

    “pucha, que bien! me salvaste, casi lo vendo” = Uff, that’s great! you save me, i almost sell it.

  6. May 3, 2011 at 2:49 pm

    Hi Andrea, thanks for the comment. I’ve clarified the usage of “pucha” in the article; it was too brief as it was before. I was referring mainly to the origin of the word rather than its usage. As for the origin being “puta,” I am not 100 percent sure about that, but it is the only explanation I’ve heard that seems logical. The usage of “pucha” is also similar to that of “puta” in many instances (as Elsa said above, it’s similar to the English “shoot” for “shit” or the Spanish “miercoles” for “mierda”).

    I’d be interested to hear if you or anyone else has an alternative theory as to the origin of the word.

    Thanks again! (and I like your “pucha” examples!)

    • Patty
      May 23, 2013 at 9:30 am

      I liked this article a lot, as a Peruvian I am quite pleased with the definitions and examples.Good work Tim! Kudos to you.

      • May 23, 2013 at 10:22 am

        Thanks Patty! It’s always good to hear positive feedback from Peruvian readers.


        Tony (you can call me Tim if you like!)

    • Jose
      December 2, 2013 at 6:32 pm

      As a peruvian, I can say from my experience, that the explanation that Elsa gave it’s a very good one: ‘shoot’ for ‘shit’ as ‘pucha’ for ‘puta’. Maybe the origin of ‘pucha’ it’s not related with ‘puta’, (or not entirely) but the similarity of both words makes you wonder. Sometimes when the word is used, the letter ‘p’ is omitted or almost not pronounced. In such a case, it would be probable that the person that is using it is very impressed by something.

    • Gian
      March 1, 2016 at 6:33 am

      Hi, and thank you for having this site. Tony, in the 1980s this word would be more like an expression. Said “Puuchha, ta dificil” or simply “Pucha” when something was not fissile or dificult as a more of a feeling of frustration with teenagers age group. Hope this helps.


    • Walter
      December 6, 2016 at 6:33 am

      Here in Lima I hear the younger generation using “pucha” much like “shit” por ejemplo, “pucha se me olvidaba” I also hear “tio” used as slang similar to how in the 80’s people in the U.S used cuz when referring to a friend.

  7. James
    June 7, 2011 at 2:45 am

    Does anyone know what the Peruvian slang word cachonda means? I think that it a reference to lesbian (lesbiana).

    • Omar
      April 27, 2012 at 5:17 pm

      Cachonda: it refers to a horny girl o woman. Same for a man: cachondo.

      Cachonda o cachondo: que mantiene y demuestra mucho deseo sexual.

      • Vanessa
        September 3, 2012 at 10:29 am

        The word cachonda is a mexican slang not Peruvian and it means the same as arrecho(a)

    • Lucy
      October 14, 2012 at 5:44 pm

      Cachonda its means a hot lady

    • Jorge
      February 3, 2014 at 12:58 pm

      JAMES: The slang “Cachonda” is not from Perú. This is from Spain but some Peruvians have brought it to their own diary spoken language. It means a woman who wants to make love at the moment. In Peruvians slangs it would be “ARRECHA” what in English could be something like: “EXCITED” (sexually).

    • Luis
      March 9, 2014 at 11:22 pm

      ultra hot girl

    • lau
      May 6, 2017 at 4:14 pm

      estas cachonda , estas caliente, arrecha

  8. June 7, 2011 at 6:43 am

    Hi James,

    It’s not a slang word I’ve ever heard, but I checked online and it seems to mean “horny” (in the mood for making love) – like the Spanish “caliente”, I guess. The online references mention it being used in Spain and Mexico. Interesting.

    Maybe we’ll get some more comments from people who have heard it used (or used it…) in Peru.

    Thanks, Tony.

    • carlos salazira
      February 16, 2012 at 11:55 am

      The correct word for a turned on, horny woman is actually ARRECHA 🙂

  9. Dave
    July 9, 2011 at 3:51 pm

    Yapa-something more. When you make a large purchase, and ask for something more. Example-cable package, and ask for HBO also

  10. diovy
    July 9, 2011 at 9:21 pm


    • Tom
      March 21, 2012 at 9:14 pm

      It means “I dare or challenge you to give me a kiss”

    • alexanra
      July 27, 2012 at 10:28 pm

      que tiene ambre

  11. Malu
    August 1, 2011 at 9:58 am

    I’m peruvian. We never say “PROFI” (for teacher or professor) we say: PROFE

    Another common expresion… “QUÉ LECHERO!” (it means “You are so lucky”)

  12. Malu
    August 1, 2011 at 10:23 am

    Lechero (literally means the milkman) but in Peru: lechero = a lucky person

    Another words for “cabro” and “brócoli” = Marica, maricón, cabrito

    CHORO: thief
    CACHARRO: face
    CALABAZA: (literally means squash) but it is used for stupid girls, girls that don’t have anything in their brains
    CALETA: hidden
    CANCHITA: pop corn
    CUERO: handsome (usually used for men) the expression is: QUÉ CUERO! it’s like PAPACITO

    • September 6, 2011 at 1:26 pm

      Thanks Malu, great additions.

    • lale
      July 8, 2015 at 1:30 am

      Caleta: also means sneaky.

      Im peruvian too and i agree with your article! This will definetely help my husban.

      Churro: also means good looking man or churra for a woman.

      The phrase: asu madre can also be pronounced asu mare which is the same just a way shortening the madre part. Like the movie asu mare by carlos alcantara.

      If i think of more, i ll let you know

  13. Malu
    August 1, 2011 at 10:32 am

    CHOTEAR: to reject a person

    GRIFO: a gas station

  14. Tom
    August 10, 2011 at 9:07 am

    “Pucha” definitely comes from “puta” but in a long way. Young boys (at least in my generation) learn to use the expression “Puta madre!” (bitch mother) to express disillusion, like when receiving a bad grade or missing a penalty or many other cases. Pretty much the same way Americans use Damm!. Also ‘puta’ is used to curse, like in “¡Por la puta madre…!” The expression gets shortened, in a much Peruvian way, to ¡Puta…! Then, since teachers and parents disapprove cursing, “puta” becomes “pucha” and “puta madre” becomes “pucha máquina”.

    • September 6, 2011 at 1:27 pm

      Thanks Tom, good explanation.

  15. Carlos
    September 6, 2011 at 10:34 am

    Just one more on this to clarify: “Pucha” IS used instead of the much stronger “puta”, but ONLY as an interjection. Never as an adjective. It is used in the same situations where an English-speaker would use “shit/shoot”. But we will NEVER say “she is a pucha”.
    “Cachonda” is the same as “arrecha” = “sexually aroused”.
    “(tocar la) corneta” = fellatio
    “sopa, sopero” = cunnilingus, man who performs it
    “mostacero/mapero” = top (homosexual)
    “corcho” = stupid
    “chochera” = (close) friend
    “por si las moscas” = just in case
    “terruco” = terrorist
    “quitarse” = to quit
    “figureti” = person who likes to show off

    • September 6, 2011 at 1:29 pm

      Hi Carlos,

      Great additions to the Peru slang list, thanks a lot.

  16. September 14, 2011 at 6:50 pm

    Diovy I think you misssed one night stand, because you heard wrong what she said.
    I´m sure she said to you Te reto a darme un beso. something like i bet You aren´t bold to give me a kiss or something like that.
    We don´t use to say cachonda maybe a peruvian coming back from Spain but the word for horny in peruvian slang is arrecho/a.
    Yara = watch out, or be careful
    Federico/a = ugly
    fetuccini = awful
    misio = broke
    estoy misio or estoy lacio = I´broke.
    cocho = old man
    mi cocho, mi viejo = my father
    mi viejita = my mother
    pirañas = a bunch of young kids who are thieves
    frito = a black person
    estoy pateando latas = I´m jobless
    recien bajado = a person from the highlands who seem just came to the coast.
    caido del palto = dork
    Huevon = stupid
    jama = food
    jato = house ( from the quechua hatuchay )
    jato also means sleeping or tired
    rayado = mad
    achorado = a guy from the slums
    achorado also mean a kind of slang an gestures from the slums
    precioso = behind the bars, imprisoned
    en canada = in prison
    crudo ( Raw ) = someone with fair skin, usually a gringo.

    • diovy
      October 30, 2011 at 9:30 pm

      hola gracias por contestas .
      te reto dame un peso me lo repitió y yo no saber ue significado teneur
      estabamos solos y yo le manoseaba porque era bonita

  17. September 17, 2011 at 5:45 pm

    Great list VicMan, thanks a lot. “Caido del Palto” — fallen from the palta/avocado tree? That’s a classic!

    Thanks again,


    • VicMan
      August 11, 2012 at 10:33 am

      Years ago we used to call GPH to a tall guy who has fear to fight or who lost a fight against a shorter guy or has fear to make a risky thing.
      GPH is grandaso por las huevas = Tall guy for nothing.

      Also a tall guy is called Roba foco

      chicha was used instead chucha = vagina, the same happen with chuta trying to avoid to say chucha. But is mostly used as an interjection.

      chimbombo is the slang for gay.

      cholo was used to call a mestizo guy of the coast whose ancestors were serranos = people from the highlands.

      ñato is a guy with short nose. Sometimes is used to refer a guy with short penis.

      Ruca in mexican slang is used to refer an old lady. In peruvian slang ruca was used to refer an easy girl.

      mamerto a silly guy, like the expression no seas mamerto = don,t be silly.

      brichero is used refering to the english word bridge,
      brichero is someone who use to flirt and engage gringas or gringos to use
      them as a bridge to go to europe or to get money.

      Pendejo in argentinean and mexican slang is someone who is stupid.
      In peruvian slang pendejo is the opposite, a sly guy. A person who makes tricky things in order to get something.

      Charito = alguien con cuerpo de chancho y piernas de pajarito. someone with a porky torso and legs of a bird.

      • VicMan
        August 11, 2012 at 11:24 am

        I just read something that is wrong.
        a 50 cents coin is called china in femenine not chino.
        years ago we used to call ferro to a one sol coin.

        Yes, We are politically incorrect and very unpolite even with our friends in our day by day dialogues.

        We use to make jokes about the charapa way to speak.
        For example how is called hielo in charapa?, del agua su duro.
        how is called ascensor ( elevator ) in charapa?, de la escalera su rapidito.
        elevator is called in charapa from the escalator its quicky ?

        butt in peruvian slang keke ( cake ), tarro ( can ), pan frances por la raya en el medio.

        Como se le llama a una chica que tiene un trasero grande en el Peru ?
        Se le llama Volskwagen, porque tiene el motor atras.

        In peruvian how is called a woman with a big butt ? She is called Volkswagen , because she has the engine behind.

        • VicMan
          August 11, 2012 at 12:02 pm

          I made a mistake, In charapa language
          elevator is from a ladder its quicky.

          another peruvian joke
          how is called omnibus ( bus ) in german?,
          empujen,estrujen,bajen (spelled alltogether )

          How is called a fat guy in peruvian slang?
          Jabancho = cuerpo de jabali y piernas de chancho.
          jabancho = a guy with Torso like a boar and legs like a pork.

          Venado = deer, is called someone who was cheated by his grilfriend. For the horns.

  18. Mariah
    September 28, 2011 at 9:45 pm

    Broder = taken from the english word brother, used to mean friend, the same way we’d say “bro”
    Causa = a friend, used like “pata”
    Chambon = slang from the jungle. Someone who ruins something or a situation. For example, a chambon would be someone who says “Yeah you’re pretty…. pretty ugly!”
    Churro = A particularly attractive or hot guy (can also be the pastry)
    Choro = a thief
    Combi = a bus (or the peruvian equivalent). Also called a micro.
    Flaca/o = Literally, skinny. Refers to a boyfriend or girlfriend. Some people replace the world with gorda/o as a play on words.
    Florear = to lie
    Floro = a lie. One might say “Que bonito floro!” literally, “What a pretty lie” in order to pretend you’re not accepting or believing a compliment.
    Germa = Girlfriend
    Habla = literally, speak. Another term for hola, or hello.
    Hueco/a = literally, a hole. Referring to someone stupid or ditzy that we would refer to as “blonde”
    Juerga = a party
    Juergear = to party
    Paja = cool, awesome, like chevere
    Quitarse = literally to take off. To leave. i.e. “Ya me quito”: I’m leaving
    Rata: literally a rat, a thief.
    Sherete = slang from the jungle, means girlfriend/boyfriend… or someone you’re sleeping with
    Sacar la mierda = to crash
    Tonear = to party
    Tono = a party
    Un sol y medio = one sol (currency) and a half, meaning 1.50. Can be used with any number

    • September 29, 2011 at 6:57 am

      Thanks Mariah, good list.

      I hear “flaca” a lot (forgot to include it in my original list, so thanks for mentioning it). It’s an interesting slang term, kind of odd but I like it.


      • November 29, 2012 at 8:23 am

        Flaca doesn’t mean girlfriend , at least not in Iquitos, it means good-looking, slim girl. If one of my mates mentions ‘una rica flacita’ he is usually keen to shag her rather actually doing so regularly!

        They also use gordita to mean a good-looking, plump girl, though less guaranteed to be someone they consider fit (in english slang), they do like their gorditas almost as much as their flacas.

        Others – huevadas are tonterias
        un chuching is someone who does it all / gets it all right.
        pishura – vagina
        raca – vagina

        cant think of more right now but the people of Loreto do not think ‘charapa’ is offensive, they are positively proud to be charapas / charapitas! oh yes and they do use cachondo as well as arrecho.

        im interested to know what is an ue….. (written on facebook!) and what means pintado (apart fromt he obvious)

        • November 29, 2012 at 10:37 am

          Thanks Padwan (interesting blog you have there). I think flaca is used in various ways, both as “fit” or “hot” and to refer more specifically to “your girl” or “girlfriend.” I’ve met guys (more so in Tingo Maria than here in Tarapoto) who used it a lot to refer to their girlfriends (some of whom were definitely not flaca in the literal sense).

          As for charapa, it depends how it’s said I guess (a bit like gringo). I’m happy to use it in a friendly way, so yeah, it’s not a word to avoid.

  19. Mariah
    September 28, 2011 at 9:47 pm

    Also, alot of words can be reversed… such as “yapla” instead of “playa” (beach). Can’t quite remember any more at the moment.

    • Fatima
      October 14, 2012 at 11:08 am


      • Victor Manuel
        November 28, 2012 at 12:47 pm

        mica = camisa = shirt.
        Lompa = pantalon = pants
        ñoba = baño = bathroom
        jonca = cajon = a box or a container plenty of beer bottles
        mionca = camion = truck
        cionca = cancion = song

        • Alexandra
          January 27, 2013 at 5:19 pm

          Llaoca – callao in Lima

  20. James
    January 25, 2012 at 3:14 pm

    Yo you forgot “chimboyon” a way of saying faggot (another one lol) not used a lot but trust me is a slang.
    “piropo” as well, meaning to flirt with someone or a complement.
    “chancho” meaning a burp
    “pajear” is also a another way of saying to masturbate.
    “chevere” meaning awesome.
    “Roche” means embarrasing.
    “alacran” means bad arm pit smell or feet
    “cojudo” a dumbass
    “estoy cagado” Im shitted(?) Im fucked
    “ni cagando” no fucking way
    “chucha” vagina
    “sopero, sopon” a soup but in slang it means to lick pussy or an old man who can do only that(viejo sopero) lol
    “papaya” a fruit, but in slang is another way for vagina (some cuban people may only think is theirs but is also a peruvian one)
    “pirana” amateur thief, or young thief
    “pituco” rich person
    “figureti” wannabe, a poser

    • February 4, 2012 at 11:14 am

      Thanks James! Slightly x-rated, but it’s all good!

  21. Rachel
    February 22, 2012 at 8:05 pm

    I really like “estoy pateando latas” because it is so visual.

    Cholo – From the Andes mountains. I can’t remember the ones for the people from the coast and the jungle.

    I’ve heard of most of these on the list so it is funny to remember them!

    Peruvians are so politically incorrect – it seems perfectly acceptable to call people “Chino”, “Negro”, “Gordo”, etc.

    In some areas, there are many ‘words’ that come from Quechua such as:
    a-la-lau (cold)
    a-ca-cau (hot)
    a-cha-chau (caught doing something naughty)

  22. February 23, 2012 at 8:39 am

    Hi Rachel! I agree, “estoy pateando latas” is a great expression. Peruvians from the jungle are “charapas.” I can’t think of any slang words for coastal Peruvians.

    Thanks for the Quechua examples, interesting.

  23. A.J.
    March 5, 2012 at 8:26 pm

    Greetings all – could someone let me know the meaning of the phrase “sonsonazo”? Much appreciated.

    • March 6, 2012 at 2:51 pm

      Hi A.J.

      Well, you’ve got me stumped on this one. I looked for “sonsonazo” on Google — judging by the usage, it’s some kind of insult (meaning “idiot,” maybe?). But I can’t figure out the exact meaning. I’ll ask some locals. In the meantime, maybe someone else will have an answer for you…


      • March 6, 2012 at 3:21 pm

        OK… I just phoned a friend.

        She says that “sonso” is similar to “tonto” (stupid/dumb/silly). I think there are some subtle differences, mainly that “sonso” is more “of the moment” (a momentary act of stupidity or a lapse of intelligence) whereas “tonto” describes a stupid person who is more likely to be stupid all the time! That’s what I’ve been told, anyway!

        The “azo” at the end of sonsonazo is just a standard augmentative suffix — making the word refer to something large (sonso = idiot; sonsonazo = big idiot).

        • A.J.
          March 6, 2012 at 4:06 pm

          Thanks very much for your help Tony! It was said jokingly to me by a very good friend (she also says “tonto” quite a bit). Cheers!

          • March 6, 2012 at 4:16 pm

            No problem! I get called “tonto” all the time. Now I’ll start listening out for “sonso”…

  24. Susan Huaman
    March 30, 2012 at 3:38 pm

    Hi 🙂 My name is Susan, I’m peruvian and I’m 21.

    I laught a lot while i was reading this page! thanks all of you for give others your information.

    Cholo = I just remembered the peruvian song “Cholo soy” 😀 jaja, i like it.
    OK, this word is used for people who are from COSTA, SIERRA and Selva of PERU.
    In some cases people use it for ofend another person but it’s because they are racism :/ BUT, fortunately they are only a few x).

    Costeño – Costero = people from “La Costa” of PERU .

    Serrano= “de la sierra del Peru” person who cames from Andes. Sometimes some persons feel ofended for this word.

    and YES is “charapa” for women and men who cames from “la Selva” (jungle) and we usually use a singular tone of voice for say “es un charapa”, “de la selva su encanto” tipical phrase the say,”charapitas” people use it for young woman. This expressions aren’t ofenssive.

    Bye bye

    Susan =)

    • April 2, 2012 at 3:28 pm

      Thanks Susan! I just found “Cholo Soy” on YouTube… it’s a great song!

  25. Jackie
    April 1, 2012 at 1:15 pm

    I heard my boyfriends use some slang like:

    chino – 50 centimos coin
    gordillo/a – play on gordito/a
    pucha flaca – skinny bitch, but usually a guy affectionately calls a girl he thinks is hot that

    • April 2, 2012 at 3:25 pm

      Thanks Jackie! No matter how affectionately it’s said, “skinny bitch” is one expression that definitely wouldn’t work well in the UK!

    • VicMan
      August 11, 2012 at 12:22 pm

      excuse me but pucha flaca doesn.t mean skinny bitch. In peruvian pucha is used as an interjection. Like pucha me olvide. It,s like shit I forgot something, and pucha flaca is something like an interjection pucha and flaca because we call flaca to the girls. saying to a girl or lady who made something unexpected. or the guy remembered something He wanted to say to her. It,s difficult to explain, but it doesn,t mean skinny bitch. It,s only a kind of interjection saying something to a girlfriend.

      • Alexandra
        January 27, 2013 at 5:43 pm

        Agreed, my friends will start/end/throw in the middle “pucha” and “huevon” without any particular meaning or addition to the sentence. When they would say “pucha flaca…” talking generally it would mean “you wouldn’t believe it…” like when recounting an unbelievable story or if after doing something stupid “oh girl come on, really?”. If someone shouting in the street “pucha flaca!” it would be like “damn you’re hot!”. It’s a lot to do with tone. But never used as skinny bitch.

        Flaca in my experience is used like “amiga”, “chica”, a friendly term instead of saying someone’s name. If it’s “mi/tu/Su flaca” then that’s when it means girlfriend.

  26. Evan
    May 2, 2012 at 8:14 am

    Two of the better ones I’ve learned recently:

    Chilindrina – Beer
    Huambrilla – Not totally sure, but I believe it means ‘sexy girl’.

    • Vanessa
      September 3, 2012 at 10:42 am

      Huambrillo(a) means kids, children. That’s how people from the jungle call them.

  27. Bruno
    May 28, 2012 at 1:27 pm

    I also laughed a lot when I read this page. I think it’s a good page, good work (especially with the comments).

    I have some suggestions for you. I’m peruvian and I’m 19 so I thought I can help.
    And Huambrilla is originally used by the people in the jungle of Perú to refer a female kid (girl); and huambrillas, to female children. You can use huambrillo for male kid (boy) or huambrillos to refer male/female children (mixed group or also a group full of boys)

    It’s very common for peruavian people to add suffixies to words to express more intention like, in english, people use “hot”, “so hot” and (maybe it could it weird) “so so so so hot” in Perú we use everyday “Rapido” “Rapidito” Rapiditito” or maybe it could more easy to explain with “Lindo” “Lindazo” “Lindasasazo” There’re a lot of sufixies and most of them are invested so you can create new one and feel ok(you can sound funny and maybe more precise)

    Ok that’s all, I think.

    You can ask me for help whenever you want guys,
    have a nice day!


  28. Bruno
    May 28, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    Oh, and remember everyday meaning of a words changes bit because of every culture is alterative. Like Cholo originally means someone from the coast, but now it means peruano almost (because someone poeple used this word incorrectly to disparagingly refer someone from the highlands)

    • June 5, 2012 at 9:16 am

      Thanks Bruno, good info! There’s so much slang in Peru — it’s good to have someone like you to help out with it all.



  29. luis velasquez
    June 23, 2012 at 10:15 pm

    rosquete = gay
    misio = without money
    ponja = japones
    chaturri = short person
    keke = ass
    no la paras o computar =understand
    me podrian decir la ultima jeringa de (chiquitinga) todavia no puedo computar
    chiqitinga es igual que ………me podrian explicar

  30. Sara
    July 11, 2012 at 8:36 am

    Hey I was wondering if someone could help me…. I have seen this a few times and am just so curious as to what it means.

    I understand chibolo, but I am under the impression that chiboleando coming from the verb chibolear means something very different. It’s definitely Peruvian slang so hopefully someone who knows the significance can help me out!

    Thanks in advance!

    • roberto
      October 19, 2012 at 1:35 pm

      Hi sara,
      chibolo is slang is a not recognized word by the Spanish language academy. But we peruvians invented that like a verb and is not a formal verb in spanish, chibolear for a man is like hanging with a young girl or having a relationship with a teen girlk or chasing a young girl
      ( pedophile ) and the opposite a lady who like young boys or is hanging with young boys or a teenager is a chibolera.
      robacunas. crib´s thief.

  31. paula
    July 13, 2012 at 8:40 am

    Chiquitingo significa basicamente un Quickie, o sea tener una relacion sexual en un tiempo corto y hacer de ella algo rapidito o si lo quieres llamar chiquitingo.

    • Fatima
      October 14, 2012 at 11:13 am

      Tony, tienes que incluir ésta (palabra) porque ‘ahorita’ esta súper de moda en Perú 😉

  32. summer
    August 1, 2012 at 12:52 pm

    Does anyone know what (and I have no idea if any of this is spelled right)

    1. Chupa ma la pinga or … chocha means?
    2. Concha tu madre means?

    • roberto
      October 19, 2012 at 1:42 pm

      Summer those expresions are sexual explicit or x rate.
      But the first one is chupame la pinga , what means suck my d*ck.
      is not chocha . in peruvian slang vagina means chucha.
      the other is the worst insult in Peru saying concha tu madre
      ( literally Your moms vagina ) is like saying mother f*cker.
      Sorry for this.

      • October 19, 2012 at 4:57 pm

        Thanks for answering Summer’s questions, Roberto. I placed a couple of asterisks’ in there, not that they make any difference at all! Cheers!

    • Allison
      August 31, 2013 at 11:00 pm

      1. Chupame la pinga/chicha: Suck my dick/pussy

      2. Conchatumadre: The pussy of your mother (you use it when you are frustrated)

  33. Fatima
    October 14, 2012 at 11:03 am

    Saying “Qué roche!” is not the same as “What a shame!”, it actually means “What an embarrassment!”

  34. jared
    October 27, 2012 at 4:08 am

    whats does lento huela or lentojuela mean?

    • October 27, 2012 at 7:23 am

      Lentejuela means sequin. No slang connotation as far as I know…

  35. Lorraine
    November 5, 2012 at 7:02 pm

    What do these words mean?
    Ya manyas q sobre ese estofao tumbes y jhonny florearmos en jerundio manyas?

    El jergor es para los sapos y sapas q buscan parar antenas o meter lentejas donde no los invitan para rajar maletear tarzan.

    • Victor Manuel
      November 28, 2012 at 1:19 pm

      What do these words mean?
      Ya manyas q sobre ese estofao tumbes y jhonny florearmos en jerundio manyas?
      manyar = look or realize something
      estofao is like a situation between two people mostly a conflict or a guy hiding an affair.
      Tumbes = Tu = You and Johny = Yo = I and Mickey = Mi = Me
      Florear = To Talk or to speak in a sweet mood and will be used also To flirt
      El jergor es para los sapos y sapas q buscan parar antenas o meter lentejas donde no los invitan para rajar maletear tarzan.

      jergor = slang
      sapa or sapo ( frog ) is the girl or dude who are so curious and like to listen to others conversation

      parar antenas is like to open yoour ears to listen
      meter lenteja is actually to echar lente ( lens ) to watch something that is not allowed to watch because they are not invited to the conversation

      rajar or maletear is to say something bad about someone when is not listening.

      tarzan = tarde = late, see you later nos vemos mas tarzan,

      All this language is like prison slang.

      • November 28, 2012 at 1:40 pm

        Thanks Victor Manuel, great stuff!

        “Nos vemos mas tarzan” — haha, I love that!

  36. Victor Manuel
    December 21, 2012 at 9:44 am

    peperas = women mostly scores or bricheras who put pills in the drinks of their victim in order to drug them and steal their moeny or something worse like a liver or a kidney.
    te atrasaron = Someone got something from you mostly your girlfriend.
    gilero = a guy who use to flirt with all the women.
    picaflor = a guy who has more than oone girlfriend.
    pisado =
    laca = lacagada. literaly the shit. But is used as an interjection when something is worng.
    nica = ni cagando = no way.
    jebe = rubber = condom
    poncho = is a traditional clothe from the andes but the phrase usar poncho is also used as to use condom.
    estar quemado = to have STDS
    estar palteado = to have problems
    ser cuadriculado = it comes from squeare is used to call someone to be too schematic, formal, conventional or have a squares brain because is not open mind.
    friki = freak
    mandado = somebody bold to flirt with the girls or someone shameless.
    el richi = the meal
    un wiro = a cigarrete of marijuana

    • Victor Manuel
      December 21, 2012 at 9:46 am

      Sorry is not scores if not scorts

      • Victor Manuel
        December 21, 2012 at 9:49 am

        Pisado is someone who use to do what his wife want him to do.

    • Sandra
      February 24, 2014 at 12:43 pm

      For what i know, a brichera shows tourists, mostly englishman or north-american, archaeological places, hangouts, clubs…basically, wherever you want to go or want to get- even drugs- with the purpose that get you into her. Dramatically speaking, is like a tourists-hunter that wants to jump to another country by a bridge made of the said tourist. Therefore, bridge: brich-era.
      Also, estar palteado is the same as tener roche, being embarrassment. Maybe estar apretado (to have financial problems al the moment, not to be poor, be) is more accurate,

      • Victor Manuel
        March 29, 2014 at 12:41 am

        I agree bricheras or bricheros are gringo hunters ,, they use to seduce gringos as a bridge to go to a developed country, but lately many of the bricheros are not interested to go to Europe that they were before, their purpose is to get money or have sex with those gringos.
        Estar palteado is widely interpreted like to be worried. I am worried because I couldnt pay a debt, or because I am not confident to be admited to the university, or because A friend of my wife saw me with la trampa ( the llover ).

        Other slang mostly refered to rural legend will be pishtaco, and a very popular slang for this days is marca and clonar.
        Marca is the guy or guys ( part of a gang ) who are watching You when you withdraw money frpm the banks , They follow You and call the thieves who are going to steal your money.
        Clonar ( to clone ) a credit card or a debit card is to steal the information from Your cards using skimmers and minicameras in the ATM machines.

  37. someone
    February 1, 2013 at 6:43 pm

    I’m no expert, but these are things I say with my family, and especially with my cousins when we go out:

    Por fi – Short, cute way of saying “por favor” (please). It’s kind of like saying, “Pleeeeeeease!” Or “pretty please.” Generally only younger people say this.

    Sapo – lit. frog. Used for some person without shame, like they’ll listen to your gossip, or try to trick you into doing things for them ’cause they’re lazy, or something of equivalence to being lazy/slightly rude. “Limpiaste tu cuarto?” “…No…” “Sapo!”

    Mongo – dummy

    Tonto – also dummy

    Maestro – Italian. Also a nickname for chofers/ferchos. Especially used on the younger chofers if you want to flirt. 😉

  38. A
    February 8, 2013 at 2:50 pm

    I lived in the highlands and I heard juguetear, siguetear, corretear all the time. I think those are relatively infrequently used outside of Peru. Also, lots of Quechua, even on the coast. Wawawasi, wasi, Mishi or minchi or Michi, Huayco, ananau, alalao, achachau. Ejemplo: A mi Mishi le encanta juguetear con Los pericotes. Ese perro le estaba sigueteando a tu mishi. Also yapa. Yapa in Quechua is Agregar so you always ask for your yapita when you want more soup or when you buy 20limes at the market and want them to throw in a bonus freebie like a “bakers dozen”. They also used “Haiga” instead of “haya” and often said “seise” for “seis”. Chato for short or as a nickname, cachete for cheek ( cachetoso or cacheton), chapa for lock, de repente for maybe, Pispa/pishpa for chapped cheeks (pishpado). Pasta for cocaine (referring to pasta basica). They also pronounced a lot of j sounds as f in the rural Huaraz area – Juana was “fana” for example, or you could be “anto(f)ado”. Also an obsessive overuse of “ya no ya” – enough already, not anymore.

  39. Armando
    March 29, 2013 at 8:52 am

    Enjoyed the page.it brought back many memories.
    I been away from Lima for over 50 years, but I remember many of the “jerga”
    Here some more:
    Cochera: garage, a place to keep el coche
    Chotea la pelota: shoot the ball, playing futbol
    En el Estadio Nacional vendors use to sell: caldo de pollo : a shot of Pisco.Literally chicken soup.
    Viejo: literally old man, but also Dad, as in “mi viejo”
    Pichon : (small bird) inexperience youth. “Tu no sabes eres un pichon”
    Carajo! : an explecitive between ” damn and sh*t
    Primo: (cousin). A very close friend. A “personal” pata.
    Maybe I’ll think of more later on

  40. Armando
    March 29, 2013 at 9:19 am

    Pincho, verga: penis, and when it is engorged “esta al palo”
    “Te saco la mierda” : I’ll pummel you
    Rosca, rosquete: homosexual
    Maricon is an homosexual, but it could be use as been very timid: no seas maricon, entra al agua.
    Marica same as above.
    Chalupa: small fisherman bote (ocean)
    Por las moscas: just in case
    Que mosca te pica: what it’s bothering you

  41. ed
    April 8, 2013 at 2:22 pm

    Ademas de la jerga usamos palabras aparentemente denigratorias, pero les damos vuelta

    -“cholito”, prestame 20 soles
    -“Cholo”, acompañame a la farmacia

  42. Monica
    April 26, 2013 at 3:35 pm

    What does “cachudo” mean ?

    • Patty
      May 23, 2013 at 9:32 am

      When your spouse/significant other is cheating on you,you are a “cachudo”(guys) and “cachuda”(women)

      • May 23, 2013 at 10:20 am

        Thanks Patty and hi Monica.

        Just to add to the explanation, “cachudo” literally refers to horns (cachos), as in “to be horned.” It’s therefore very similar to the English word “cuckold,” referring to a husband with an adulterous wife (now more general used for anyone “cheated on”). Cuckolds in Western tradition are also said to wear horns.

  43. mateo
    August 28, 2013 at 2:24 pm

    “cachar means to have sexual intercourse.¡que rixo cache! Whata good fuck had! It is thougt it comes from the Enlish experssion “to catch” but nobody is sure!
    penis: pinga, pincho , Semen:lechada. testicles:bolas, pelotas, huevas, huevos. Hence:boludo, pelotudo,huevon,huevonazo:all meaning stupid.

    • mateo
      December 16, 2016 at 7:01 pm

      “Cachero” is a guy known for having sex very frequenly-

  44. valeria
    February 1, 2014 at 5:27 pm

    lol I am Peruvian and it cant get more accurate xD thank you so much for this list 😀 it has helped me a lot and now I even know more words 🙂 thank you lol I really gotta learn these words

  45. glenda
    February 6, 2014 at 8:38 am

    Great compilation!
    Of course there are many more, but I would say, one important one is missing:

    Picarse/picon/picona. To hold a grudge on somebody and act on it maliciously, when getting back to the person that caused it. For example when getting nicknames “chapas”, people tend to get mad because the cannot deal with it or don’t have the humour: “No tienen correa”.

  46. Jesse
    February 20, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    So if some one says “eres churro” is it more along the lines of handsome, cute, charming….. ?

    • February 20, 2014 at 5:30 pm

      Hi Jesse. Yeah, as far as I know “eres churro” would mean something like handsome/cute. My wife used to call me her “chico churro.” She doesn’t anymore. I must be getting old and weathered…..

  47. Mahesh Kalwani
    May 6, 2014 at 6:12 am

    Can someone help me with a really exotic name for a Japanese Peruvian Restaurant.

    • May 8, 2014 at 1:21 pm

      Um… I’m not sure if it’s exotic, but Sakura Maru would be a cool name. That was the name of the first ship to bring Japanese immigrants from Japan to Peru.

      Anyone else got any suggestions….?

  48. Linda
    July 8, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    What does “ananau” mean?

    • jarmy
      July 16, 2014 at 10:07 am

      must be quechua… not most of peruvian knows this lenguage because is only spoken for native people

    • Coco Drilo
      April 16, 2015 at 10:21 pm

      Isn’t it ALALÁU? I learned that means like OH-OH! when one does something wrong or something goes wrong. Usually said by another person, as a scare or warning expression (shaking one of your hands as if you were clearing a thermometer), unto the one wrongdoing: Alalau! Rompiste el vaso, ahora tu mamá te va a pegar!… Alaláu! Como regresaremos a casa, el bus ya no pasa a esta hora!
      Although in the Andes, this quechua interjection is used when reacting to extreme or sudden cold.

  49. elchibolo
    July 15, 2014 at 7:05 am

    I think “ananau” means “oh so, beautiful” or something like that. It’s quechua. Another quechua word I heard a lot in Peru is “amachay” which means. “I’m so scared!”.

    • October 24, 2014 at 12:27 pm

      I had a quick look online. Looks like ananau is a Quechua word for suffering, like a broken heart or the pain of loss.

      • Victor Manuel
        September 6, 2015 at 8:24 pm

        I don’t speak quechua but what I heard when someone is hurt or is suffering a phisical pain the expression is achachau.

  50. jarmy
    July 16, 2014 at 10:06 am

    Chongo has a traslation that is ok, if you literaly mean it, but in slang way can mean big party or having fun
    there is also missed Micro which is public bus and ñoba which is bathroom ( the last one is important after being Cheleando or drinking beers for a while) like tio donde esta el ñoba (excuseme where is the toilet)

    • Coco Drilo
      April 16, 2015 at 9:59 pm

      Chongo also means outrage, argument, scene, uproar, riot. Used as “hacer chongo” as well like to stir up or cause the aforementioned. Ella me hizo chongo. Se desató un chongo. Están haciendo chongo. La gente está haciendo (un) chongo.

  51. Rob
    September 12, 2014 at 6:47 am

    Interesting. But do words like “huasca” change with the gender and number of the noun they modify?

    In other words, is a man “huasca” or is he “huasco”?
    Are several women “huascas” or still just “huasca”?

  52. N
    September 17, 2014 at 7:35 pm

    Hi Tony,
    Reading all this compilation made me remember many things. However, I think that this should be used only to understand but not to talk (sry, old school person here).
    There is an important one that you are missing, as Glenda said before, it is the word picona/picon/picas/picarse/piques (and all related to the verb “picar” LOL)

    Picon/picona = person who gets mad when he/she is losing at anything that means competition (even if it was not a competition at all). For example: “No seas picona. which means, do not get mad because of that challenge/do not get mad because you lost.
    Picarse = it will be the noun of the word “picona” For example, “No vale picarse” = It is not valid to get mad (at whatever game or dare that you are being challenged)
    Piques/picas = this would be the adverb, I guess (it is kind of funny trying to explain it as a formal Spanish word LOL) For example, “No te piques” (PEE-CHE-S) which means do not get mad because of that, “porque te picas?” Why are you mad? However, that question is only related to the challenge. People do not go asking “porque te picas” in normal situations.

    What Glenda said is interesting because it is normal when a person gets irritated because she/he lost a challenge or a game (because “se pico”). It is usual that THAT person do something mean, such as attacking with a violent comment or with a mean action.


    • October 24, 2014 at 12:30 pm

      Hi N. And thanks for the explanation. At some point I’ll probably move some of these added words and phrases up into the article, but people seem to enjoy reading these comments, so I guess they are fine here for now. Thanks again.

  53. N
    September 17, 2014 at 7:49 pm

    Dear Tony,
    ^^ I could have summarized with the word “bad loser” sorry for the big explanation.
    Sorry again and Thank you for the hard work that you put on your webpage.


  54. Yvette Paredes
    October 2, 2014 at 6:39 pm

    Omg I love this article. I am married to a Peruvian.. Love him to death. This November we will be married five yrs. happy five years. When his family visit I can not conversate with them because I don’t understand them. All these slang words is what they say. Now I will be able to have a conversation with them,! Thanks

    • October 24, 2014 at 12:32 pm

      Happy anniversary (almost)! And good luck with the slang conversation…. but tread carefully with some of these words!

  55. Guest
    December 12, 2014 at 12:44 pm

    Papaya is also used for something easy (Eso es algo demasiado papaya! ; Papayasa). Also, you can add papacito (the same as mamacita but male).

  56. D
    December 13, 2014 at 11:38 pm


    It’s missing also “latear” = caminar

  57. halbo
    February 5, 2015 at 12:46 pm

    I did not read all of these so pardon if already commented: how about Chacra, one’s little farm or patch of land. I heard that a lot when i lived in Peru.

    • March 12, 2015 at 12:00 pm

      Yeah, chacra is fairly common. But I’m not sure if it can really be classed as slang — it’s just a particular word for a “farm” as far as I know.

      • John
        May 5, 2015 at 6:14 pm

        chacra: the dictionary says farm, country house, but in common use I have found it to mean a field or pasture,

  58. Adam
    March 7, 2015 at 7:09 pm

    Love the list, even if I am late to the game. I don’t know if the following are all slang found uniquely in the northern coastal areas, but that was where I lived while I was in Peru.

    Tacaño: Tightwad. Usually said while slapping an elbow with the opposite hand.
    ‘cha que: Shortened form of “pucha que.” As in, ” ‘Cha que feo!”

    And from the Piura region:
    Churre: Used to refer to children. A somewhat derogatory term, but not in an insulting way. If that makes sense.
    Hua: Somewhat akin to a snort of derision. Said deeper in throat. Usually along with the above: “Hua, churre.”

    Again, love the list, just wanted to add to it.

    • March 12, 2015 at 12:03 pm

      Thanks Adam, nice to have some Piura slang. As for “tacaño”, it’s a great word, but I don’t think it’s slang as such.

      • Enrique
        April 10, 2015 at 11:42 am

        Some slang words that use countries as reference

        En Canadá = In jail (from “cana” wich means jail)
        En Bolivia = pregnant (from “bola” wich means ball)
        Estoy Paraguay = I have an erection (from “parada” that means stand up)
        China = 50 cents. People usually say tu the bus collector: “Una china por 5 cuadras” (50 cents for giving me a ride through 5 blocks)

        Demonyms in “Peruvian”
        Ponja = japanese (from Japón, order of the syllables has been reversed)
        Roto = chilean (means literally “broked”. It’s an expression took from Chile where it is referred to a low living person).
        Boliche = Bolivian
        Colocho = Colombian
        Perucho = Peruvian
        Yorugua = Uruguayan
        Brachico = Brazilian
        Lorcho = Cholo (peruvian person with andean features. It’s despective.)

      • Victor Manuel
        September 6, 2015 at 8:37 pm

        The slang for tacaño is duro.
        Like saying no seas duro pay the beer or devoto de la virgen del puño or worshiper of the tightfist virgin or to be mano de piedra.

      • Victor Manuel
        July 28, 2016 at 12:28 pm

        Maybe it isn’t in use so much nowadays but decades ago was used to refer somethng that looks sloppy or made in a mediocre way, Eso esta chacra o me salio chacra now You can say eso esta asta las h

        Slang for tacaño is Devoto de la virgen del puño or mano de piedra or este huevon es duro……. (duro para soltar el billete).
        Devoted to the Fist virgin, or this guy is a stone hand.

        Chacra was a slang decades ago but I guess is not in use any more.
        Chacra referred to something that looks mickey mouse , something of bad quality.
        Now the people say eso esta hasta las huevas o se ve hasta las huevas.


  59. Coco Drilo
    April 16, 2015 at 10:46 pm

    I find fascinating that whenever I refer to someone as a cholo (andes) o pituco (coast) Peruvians tell me that it is “ok” but that I have to “be really careful” because it might be “really offensive” to many people but when I say charapa (jungle), these peruvians laugh and tell me these people are ignorant, always horny, behind the times, have funny accents (I mean cholos and pitucos have “funny accents” too) and they usually mimic them and even encourage me to make fun of the charapas; I mean I found in that area of Perú, “jungle people” who were even smarter and more polite and genuine than many of these prejudiced people from the other areas! Anyway…

    • Ali
      June 19, 2015 at 4:47 pm

      Hi, congrats in your research ,to add something I would add say that it depends where you live in Peru,in the coast where “pitucos consider to be “,in the andes where “cholos live” and in the jungle where “charapas come from”, and mention that unfortunately this slangs are corrupting our language since more and more slangs are taking over.The trashy tabloids contribute a lot with it and the poor masses follow it. Pitucos has a lot part in it too,since most of them live in Lima ,they are known to be lazy to pronounce words correctly.Most of Peruvian used slangs daily to speak.Common and famous people add more and more everyday,is the way it works,we want to be chevere and bacan,but trust me believe me,there is more behind and one the most important reasons for cholos to learn slangs when they migrate to Lima ,is because they are ashame of their accent due to their bilingual condition (people whose mother language is Quechua and second language is Spanish).Do you ever think why this happen??,because of the racism in our country. “Todos somos cholo”=We all are cholos,or “El que no tiene de inga tiene de mandinga”=Who doesn’t have Inca features,has black ones,these are 2 common phrases Peruvian use to reject racism in our country ,but most of Peruvian has a deep racism feeling ,I blame it on the ignorance!!!.I enjoyed your blog ,but it is fair enough you acknowledge the origin of Peruvian slangs.

  60. Jenny Garcia
    June 3, 2015 at 9:11 am

    Interesting blog, even i don’t know all those slangs lol, it was hillarius 🙂

  61. Lola
    November 12, 2015 at 5:55 pm

    Yo creo que en el Peru no hay racismo. Lo que existe es Clasismo. Entre ellos se clasifican como eres, quien eres y de donde vienes. To be honest, I dont think there is a place to give origen to the slang in Peru. Like each city has their own rejection to someone from another town and etc. Like I said, in Peru we arent racist, we are classist. We point to people by their class, status and etc. Very interesting your list. And to Ali, just people from Iquitos are the Maldita boa, people from other places are different. Like in Ucayali – Pucallpa, they said to be Playabuchis, but since Limenos classified selvatics as Maldita boas, that’s most people say lately.

    • Gian
      March 1, 2016 at 7:02 am

      Buen dia Lola. Pienso que basado en la experiencia me atrevo a decir que el racismo existe en todos los lugares donde hay dos seres humanos que conviven. Por que creo que el racismo es parte de la naturaleza del ser humano. Pero, la diferencia esta si el racismo existente en el individuo es aplicado al projimo o es cohibido por el mismo y puede ver mas halla de ese “complejo” ancestral y en lugar inclinarse hacia algo mas armonico o positivo.

      Have a great day!


  62. Joseph
    February 22, 2016 at 1:24 pm

    Hey im curretly living in Tacna, Peru but was born in Lima… And lived in Michigan 20 years…. In Lima we use “bateria” like how u use causa ,pata…. Kinda like ” ya pe batria … Que te pasa oe ”
    Btw… Like this site.. Peace

  63. Katarina
    March 9, 2016 at 1:47 am

    Please could you tell me if word chupeton in Peru could also have any meaning related to drink/drinking like word chupar – to drink alcohol. Literally “to suck,” like “sucking on a beer”?

    • March 26, 2016 at 10:19 am

      Hi Katarina. As far as I know, chupetón doesn’t have any real relation to drinking (as in, chupar), it’s just used in relation to love bites.

  64. tito
    March 11, 2016 at 2:05 am

    everybody, the most of slang came just from Lima, one part from the upper class of the 19 century first 20 century, and another part came from the traditional popular class from Lima (criollos) and just are know by the rest of the peruvian in modern and recent times, is just in the last 20 years, repeat from tarapotinos or anothers peruvians , by the TV shows, specially, comedy shows, and just in recent times is similar the peruvian culture, just like in USA, with TV at recent times the young americans learn a standard accent
    most of that slang are from Lima and take from Spain “the Mother land”; jama (from jamear – Spain) cachondo(a) (Spain), arrecho (Spain) choro from chorro (Spain) paja (from masturbate Spain; paja was in Lima teenages of the 50’s like “A pleasure” good) Piropo (what of peruvian? Spain) pajearse (Spain) Conchudo (Spain) estoy cagado (Spain) churro (spain) are common in Spain and all the sons of Hispanoamérica countries, and like in other countries of hispanoamerica the foreign people, and even the young people, take tha expressions by quechuas, guaranies, aztecas, of other indian languajes, even, many expression of the culture of USA came from Spain, and nobody knows (gringo, is not mexican, came from Spain, and Jerky came from charqui, from Spain, or even the country music is taked from the spaniards at colonial times, and nobody belive that in USA
    for example
    “Pucha Máquina” i remember, years befote, that expresión was just from the middle class ans upper middles class from Lima, and nobody knew in Tarapoto, and they learned from TV shows – I remenber the same from Brichero, Mostro, etc, slang from upper class, even from surfers, and now i ear everyplace
    is like the food, the most of famous peruvian food are tradicional food from Lima, absolluty unknown years befote in the rest of El Perú, and know, specially foreings sites explain the origin is from the Incas, whatever
    and many things from el Perú today are attributed to other countries, like; Dulce de Leche or manjar Blanco, some sites said is from Argentina, and the Marques of Casa Concha, used by the chilenas in the wine Concha y Toro like a chilean noble, that Marques was peruvian
    for example
    LECHERO (many spoke before) lechero came from last 19 century and early 20 century, the kids of Lima middle class playing the Marble Game, and opened the bag and seeing the white marble Milk Glass (La Lechera) was the very lucky, or the cat’s eye (Ojo de Gato) and saying “¡Que Lechero!” (like “Lucky!”) thas very common, and everybody knew the significance, but, with the time people forget, and invent a extravagand origin, or in Quechua langue, or another absurd origin
    But i cant analyse every jerge the people comment
    Many confuse Jerga with peruanism, jerga is many times a expression of few peruvians, the jerga is not a PERUANISMO, peruanismo is another thing that every peruvian know, jerga is many funny word of the street
    For example
    CHEVERE is not peruvian jerga, is from Venezuela, is just a recent use by a particular group of peruvians, just a minor group of younger peruvians, the most of peruvian unknown this jerga, and sure in 2 or 3 years everybody will forget

    PERUANISMO, real peruanismo, are few, and every peruvian born knows, the boys and girls, and the seniors and very old people, are few, and very exclusive,
    CALATO, RAJAR, COJUDO, PATA, and others are peruanism, that every peruvian knows, the jergas are unknown for the peruvians, and nobody talk that way, or maybe you walk only with gangsters or low level
    Many peruvians, and young foreing visitors, confuse jergas that nobody know (just a group of teenager in a few group of discoteques) with peruanism, and talk like if every peruvian know and use that
    (oe pe, causita, pe, dame chicharrón, pe, chévere, pe)
    that’s a real, real lie

  65. Patricia
    December 20, 2017 at 11:49 am

    This is really useful! Will definitely be giving these a go on my trip 🙂 what’s the best way for us to book the tours and trips we want to do while we are in Peru?

    • Kaan
      December 20, 2017 at 11:56 am

      Hey Patricia, glad you enjoyed the post, definitely some useful and funny ones there to use on your trip. Just make sure you don’t use it with the wrong people!

      The best way to book the trips and tours you want to is by going on https://www.findlocaltrips.com and book on the website. They are the best website to book trips in South America online as all other operators charge higher prices than what it should cost online!

      Enjoy your trip! 🙂

  66. Stephen Murray
    July 24, 2018 at 11:19 am

    these are absolutely brilliant! i know barely any spanish but ive been using these phrases all the time and it makes me seem like ive been living in peru all my life

    • Brooks
      July 25, 2018 at 9:38 am

      It’s fantastic, isn’t it! I feel like a real Peruvian with all these phrases, would be lost without them!

    • Jessica Reilly
      July 25, 2018 at 9:51 am

      Im the same! I learned these words before i learned to say what my name is in spanish and i regret nothing… great post

  67. Hatun Noguera
    November 18, 2018 at 10:26 am

    Since Quechua is spoken by so many people in Peru, could someone add a few slang words in Quechua here too?

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