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28 Top-tier Online Portuguese Courses to Help You Reach Fluency [Updated for 2024]

Gone are the days when Portuguese learning was confined to a physical classroom.

Now, you can transport yourself to the streets of Portugal, Brazil or any of the other countries that speak Portuguese with just a few clicks!

In this post, we’ll outline the best Portuguese online courses to take in 2024.

Read on to discover everything you need to know about these top-tier Portuguese courses, so you can get started on your journey to fluency! 

Contents

1. Best for Practical Learning: Babbel

babbel

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $13.95 per month (see pricing page here)

Summary: This is a practical course with well-structured lessons aimed at beginner and intermediate learners of Brazilian Portuguese.

Babbel is an immersive platform that consists of a varied selection of online Portuguese courses for learners of the Brazilian dialect.

The platform’s main offerings include lessons that are appropriate for your level, Portuguese grammar exercises and special modules (such as travel-based and everyday vocabulary) that would be useful in all kinds of interactions.

Check out a comprehensive review of Babbel here

2. Best for Immersion-based Learning: FluentU

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: See pricing page here

Summary: FluentU turns authentic videos into immersive language learning lessons through interactive subtitles and other learning aids. Because it exposes you to the language as it’s spoken by native Brazilians, you’ll pick up more natural-sounding Portuguese. 

FluentU helps you learn Brazilian Portuguese with short, authentic videos, such as music videos, movie trailers, commercials and inspiring talks. This gives you access to natural speech, including native pronunciation, and enables you to improve your listening comprehension through immersion in content originally aimed at Brazilian speakers. 

Each video comes with interactive subtitles which provide contextual information about the vocabulary used. You can see how words are used in different contexts. 

Learning doesn’t end there, though. FluentU features interactive exercises that allow you to review vocabulary with multimedia flashcards or personalized quizzes, as well as speaking activities and writing practice.

3. Best for Speaking Practice: Pimsleur

pimsleur

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $150 per level ($575 for the whole course)

Summary: A traditional audio-based course that emphasizes spoken language, Pimsleur is a great resource for learning Brazilian Portuguese.

Pimsleur is an old name in the language-learning world, providing well-structured courses for a huge number of languages.

It emphasizes spoken language to help you become more confident with your speaking. In fact, you’re encouraged to speak Portuguese from the very beginning. This does mean that reading and writing take a back seat, so you might want to supplement the course with additional resources

That being said, the course is still highly effective, practical and hands-free (which is always convenient). There’s also a lot of reinforcement in the lessons, which helps with memorization and long-term retention.

You can learn Brazilian Portuguese and/or European Portuguese from Pimsleur, though I personally recommend the Brazilian course between the two. Read our full Pimsleur review here

4. Best for Course Variety: Udemy

udemy

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $9.99 per course

Summary: This platform has a large number of courses for all levels and covers both Brazilian and European Portuguese.

Udemy has become quite famous for its vast collection of online courses. In fact, the site hosts a series of lessons for Brazilian and European Portuguese learners of all levels.

Although many of these courses are available at a fee, there are a few free gems lurking around as well, like this 3-minute taster.

Udemy’s materials follow a clear, structured path, usually combining a mixture of online videos, written notes and revision quizzes to help learners practice and hone their skills at a steady pace.

5. Best for Beginners: Memrise

memrise

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $2.99 for a weekly learning plan

Summary: Memrise provides app-based learning with elements of gamification to keep you engaged and motivated. 

Memrise is a language-learning platform and app that offers courses for both European and Brazilian Portuguese. The short lessons, designed around real-life topics like food or introductions, include key words and phrases to learn as well as videos and audio recordings from native speakers. 

The app comes with learning games to help you memorize new material and enables you to record your pronunciation and compare it with that of a native speaker. 

Find out more about Memrise in this in-depth review

6. Best for Structured Zoom Classes: Speaking Brazilian

speaking-brazilian

Available on: Website

Price: $297 + tax for the basic plan (self-paced digital course) and $497 for the premium plan (digital course + group classes)

Summary: The courses at Speaking Brazilian combine self-paced study using pre-recorded materials with live Zoom classes for a comprehensive learning experience. 

Speaking Brazilian offers several courses designed by Brazilian teacher Virginia Langhammer. Upon purchasing a course, you’ll receive access to pre-recorded videos and other learning materials that follow a structured curriculum.

You’ll also be invited to online Zoom classes that take place every week for the duration of the course, where you’ll be able to interact directly with teachers and other students. The Zoom lessons are great for conversation practice! 

The courses available at Speaking Brazilian are suitable for learners of all levels. There are also crash courses for verb conjugation and for those traveling to Brazil

Speaking Brazilian also includes free resources, such as YouTube videos, a podcast, and a mini-course on Brazilian pronunciation

7. Best for Pronunciation Practice: Rocket Languages

rocket-languages

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $149.99 for the Premium Level 1 courses

Summary: This comprehensive program is great for beginner and intermediate learners, with well-structured audio lessons and a stronger focus on pronunciation than many other courses. 

Rocket Languages provides classroom-style teaching of Brazilian Portuguese, in a way that’s supposed to inspire and make learning more enjoyable. 

The lessons are structured like conversations between a native Portuguese speaker and a learner, which makes for less formal and more authentic-sounding dialogues. They can also be downloaded and used on the go. 

The virtual voice recognition system can analyze your speech and identify problem areas, which is super handy for perfecting your pronunciation.  

You can read our full review of Rocket Languages here.

8. Best for Dialogue-based Learning: PortuguesePod101

portuguesepod101

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $7.99 per month

Summary: PortuguesePod101 offers a series of short audio lessons for learners of all levels. 

Innovative Language’s PortuguesePod101 comes with resources and materials for virtually every learning style. It’s worth noting that most of these materials come in the form of themed audio and video dialogues with vocabulary lists and lesson notes. 

The basic plan might be enough for casual learners. The premium subscriptions, on the other hand, come with one-on-one tutor access, personalized learning programs and assignments. 

Read a full review of Innovative Language here

9. Best for Community Support: Busuu

busuu

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $6.99 per month

Summary: Busuu is a language-learning app that gives you the option to record your answers and receive feedback on your pronunciation from native speakers. 

Busuu combines language lessons with feedback from native speakers, enabling you to perfect your pronunciation as you build your vocabulary and grammar skills. Since you’ll be receiving encouragement, comments and improvement suggestions from real people, Busuu offers a sense of community support alongside speaking practice

The course comes in the form of an app that enables you to schedule your study time and sends notifications to remind you of your goals and keep you on track. Regular comprehension checks let you verify your progress as well. 

If all of that sounds good, read this Busuu review to find out more.

10. Best for Innovative Features: Mondly

mondly

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $9.99 per month

Summary: Mondly takes interactive learning to the next level with AR, VR, chatbots and competitive leaderboards. 

The Mondly app offers short, daily lessons that employ a range of methods, from classic exercises to augmented reality games and activities. The app also comes with a chatbot that Portuguese learners can use for conversation practice. 

The Portuguese course is intended to cater to learners of all levels, although the advanced content is relatively limited. To make the course engaging and keep you motivated, Mondly features weekly and monthly challenges and other gamification elements. 

To learn more about these unique features, check out our Mondly review.

11. Best for Authentic Learning Materials: LingQ

lingq

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $12.99 per month

Summary: LingQ is a platform that turns authentic materials in Portuguese into language lessons. 

LingQ features an extensive library of materials in Portuguese—primarily texts with accompanying audio. Most of the audio files were recorded by native speakers, and the platform gives you the option to slow down or speed up audio to suit your level. 

The course makes texts interactive by allowing you to click on every Portuguese word to see a translation and other helpful notes. It’s even possible to upload your own content and have the platform turn it into an interactive text that you can use for language practice. 

Read this LingQ review for more information.

12. Best for Finding Flexible Tutors: Verbalplanet

verbalplanet

Available on: Website

Price: $22 for a 40-minute lesson (on average), loyalty discounts available (up to 15%)

Summary: This site can help you learn Portuguese at every level by connecting you directly with tutors for one-on-one online lessons.

Verbalplanet is a website that connects students of all levels with native Portuguese-speaking tutors.

It’s an incredibly flexible option if you want to build up fluency in a highly interactive manner. After all, having live conversations is a great way to immerse yourself in the language!

While the site’s options are pretty easy to customize (you can test the waters with a single lesson or plunge all the way into a complete course), this is a great option for letting someone else take charge of your learning.

13. Best for Online Portuguese Lessons: coLanguage

colanguage

Available on: Website

Price: Depends on the tutor

Summary: This site is good for those wanting to work with tutors, most of whom are certified.

After signing up, you can schedule online lessons with real tutors, including native speakers of Portuguese. The Portuguese teachers you’ll find here are pre-screened, and lessons come with a quality guarantee.

You have the option to take free trial classes to get a feel for the person you’re working with. And if you happen to need to cancel prebooked classes for any reason, you can do so through their system.

14. Best for Mobile 24/7 Tutor Access: Preply

preply

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Depends on the tutor

Summary: Preply is another platform that enables language students to connect with Portuguese tutors and native speakers with quick, easy scheduling. 

Preply offers access to hundreds of Portuguese tutors, many of whom are certified teachers and/or native speakers of either European or Brazilian Portuguese. Lessons are tailored to your level and needs, with some tutors specializing in certain levels or types of vocabulary, such as corporate or travel communication. 

15. Best for Individual or Group Classes: Portuguese Connection

portuguese-connection

Available on: Website

Price: Starts at €320 (approx. $345) for 10 individual classes and €190 (approx. $205) for 30 group classes

Summary: Portuguese Connection offers online classes for individuals and groups courtesy of a language school located in Portugal. 

Portuguese Connection is a Lisbon-based Portuguese school which offers in-person classes as well as online language courses. The online courses can take the form of either individual tuition or group classes. 

The school offers courses in both European and Brazilian Portuguese, and you can even enroll with friends for a group discount. You’ll also get access to interactive materials and receive an official diploma upon successful completion of the course. 

16. Best for Immediate Lessons: LingoDeer

lingodeer

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $14.99 per month

Summary: LingoDeer is a highly engaging, beginner-friendly course that’ll start teaching you basic Brazilian Portuguese vocabulary in minutes. 

Visit the LingoDeer website, and you’ll be learning basic words before you even realize it. The course features an intuitive, user-friendly design, gamification elements and varied exercises that will keep you engaged and entertained while you learn Brazilian Portuguese. 

LingoDeer is best suited for beginners looking to dive right into the language. It’s a great course for learning vocabulary and basic grammar, but it doesn’t feature audio recording options—so you’ll need another tool if you want to check your pronunciation. 

Our full review of LingoDeer is right here.

17. Best for Audio-based Learning: Michel Thomas Method

michel-thomas-method

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $11.99 for a pack of 12 credits

Summary: This practical audio course is excellent for getting you to speak Portuguese from day one. 

The Michel Thomas Method focuses on learning Portuguese through active use, making word retrieval much easier when you’re put in a situation where you actually have to use the language. 

The approach is quite unique in that it gets you speaking Portuguese from the get-go—something that only a few other courses do. And because it’s entirely audio-based, it makes for easy, on-the-go listening.

18. Best for University-style Learning: MIT OpenCourseWare

mit-opencourseware

Available on: Website

Price: Free

Summary: These free MIT courses are university quality, minus the university price tag.

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) has quite a rich open course catalog. If you’re trying to get your head around Brazilian Portuguese, MIT has undergrad study materials available for free.

Make sure you take a close look at the full list of courses, so you can select the level that best matches your current abilities. The courses cover levels from beginner to advanced, mostly consisting of lecture notes and supplementary resources for additional reading.

19. Best for App-based Learning With Tutor Access: Polly Lingual

polly-lingual

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: $2.99 per month or $9.99 per year

Summary: Polly Lingual features interactive online lessons with the option to connect and practice with native Portuguese speakers. 

Polly Lingual is a neat app that offers interactive lessons for beginner, intermediate and advanced Brazilian Portuguese learners, focusing on both vocabulary and grammar. 

Many of the lessons include videos uploaded by tutors—called “Polly Ambassadors”—to explain key concepts. For an added fee, users can connect with Polly Ambassadors and schedule private lessons.

20. Best for European Portuguese: Practice Portuguese

practice-portuguese

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: $19.99/month

Summary: Practice Portuguese teaches authentic European Portuguese in the form of hundreds of listening, speaking and grammar exercises.

Practice Portuguese aims to introduce learners to Portuguese exactly as it’s spoken in Portugal. It does so via short lessons featuring interactive exercises and activities, including pronunciation practice. The lessons progress to more difficult language over time, with the full course catering to beginner, intermediate and advanced learners. 

The lessons in this course come with video and audio recordings of native speakers from different regions of Portugal to expose learners to different accents used across the country. 

21. Best for Textbook-based Learning With Audio: Live Lingua FSI Project

live-lingua

Available on: Website

Price: Free

Summary: If you don’t mind slightly old-fashioned audio, these courses offer a great overview of the Portuguese language. 

Live Lingua’s Foreign Service Institute (FSI) project offers free-to-access, public domain courses. This includes a handful of beginner to intermediate lessons for both Brazilian and European Portuguese learners.

Each course consists of e-books, and most come with audio files. Learners also get access to an online sound recording tool for pronunciation practice.

22. Best for Reference and Review: Easy Portuguese

easy-portuguese

Available on: Website

Price: Free

Summary: Easy Portuguese is a no-frills website offering a treasure trove of educational material for beginner to intermediate Brazilian Portuguese learners.

It’s not a structured course, per se, but it’s perfect for those looking for a more self-guided approach to online learning. With vocabulary lists, verb conjugation tables and handy grammar guides that explain key concepts, Easy Portuguese can feel more like a digital textbook than an interactive course. 

The aforementioned vocabulary lists are its strongest asset. Words are categorized into a number of different themes, including nationality, Brazilian and Portuguese names and adjectives. This makes Easy Portuguese a helpful tool for quickly discovering new words and phrases and for hassle-free vocabulary reviews. 

23. Best for Free and Self-paced Lecture-style Lessons: Professor Jason

professor-jason

Available on: YouTube

Price: Free

Summary: Professor Jason is a YouTube channel with lecture-style videos that teach Spanish and Brazilian Portuguese.

If you’re after a conventional classroom Portuguese course that’s accessible online for free, Professor Jason’s channel might just be the perfect option for you. The channel features dozens of Brazilian Portuguese lessons for every level, which are sorted into playlists for easy access. 

Professor Jason’s course is based entirely on these pre-recorded lessons, so there’s no interactive element to learning Portuguese here. However, key grammar concepts are explained clearly and with plenty of examples, so this could be an excellent complementary resource for other learning tools. 

24. Best for Text Resources: Learn Portuguese with Rafa

learn-portuguese-with-rafa

Available on: Website

Price: Free

Summary: This website has lots of free written material covering a variety of topics, with courses available for both European and Brazilian Portuguese. 

This course by Rafael Tavares (a.k.a. Rafa) taps into his experiences with speaking European Portuguese at home, growing up in South America and learning English in the United Kingdom.

The course steers away from dry academic language and gives full insight into daily linguistic conventions. Over the years, the author has developed courses for both European and Brazilian Portuguese learners.

His website includes plenty of materials for beginners, including written guides on grammar, verbs and vocabulary, as well as a series of instructional videos that put all of these into context.

25. Best for Spanish Speakers: Tá Falado

ta-falado

Available on: Website

Price: Free

Summary: If you’re a Spanish speaker, these free audio lessons are incredibly helpful for mastering grammar and Brazilian Portuguese pronunciation.

Do you speak Spanish? Well, you’re already halfway to speaking Portuguese, and Tá Falado is sure to help you get there. 

These series of audio lessons are available courtesy of The University of Texas at Austin, aimed at highlighting differences between Spanish and Portuguese for those who already speak the former (though they can be helpful for everyone). They cover grammar and the ins and outs of Brazilian Portuguese pronunciation in a lot of detail. 

Professor Orlando R. Kelm breaks down the language concepts behind dialogues performed by Brazilians Michelle and Valdo, with native Spanish speaker José Luis offering a Spanish speaker’s perspective. 

26. Best for Memorization and Vocabulary Building: Rosetta Stone

rosetta-stone

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: One-year subscription starts at $109.99

Summary: Rosetta Stone’s system of teaching Portuguese via image association makes it perfect for visual learners.

Rosetta Stone’s lessons rely heavily on image association—basically, you’ll be asked to look at a graphic and commit it to memory. Speech recognition technology is included in the program as well. There’s also a live tutoring option that’ll put you in conversation with a native speaker, although this is only available to premium users.

You can learn more about Rosetta Stone in this review.

27. Best for Well-rounded and Interactive Learning: Transparent Language

transparent-language

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: $24.99 per month or $149.99 per year (rates for multiple languages are higher)

Summary: Transparent Language’s online lessons provide a good bang for your buck, as they cover all the bases: pronunciation, speech, grammar and vocabulary building.

While Transparent Language favors the Brazilian dialect, they also have some European Portuguese software in their collection.

If you’re using the software version, standout features include graphs and charts that track progress and performance, as well as typing activities—the latter of which will be instrumental in helping you get used to those Portuguese tildes, cedillas and acute accents.

28. Best for Video-based Learners: Fluenz

fluenz

Available on: iOS | Android

Price: Starts at $179.99 for a basic course

Summary: Fluenz is a program designed to teach Portuguese step-by-step via video tutorials.

Fluenz is unique in that its courses come in the form of video tutorials courtesy of a Brazilian Portuguese-speaking tutor.

Earlier units focus primarily on the basics of conversational speech and grammar. As you progress through each lesson, Fluenz covers more abstract ideas, specialized vocabulary and difficult verb tenses. The idea is that all lessons build from one another, following a logical structure.

Repetition is embedded within different contextual examples, making new vocabulary much easier to memorize. The study material takes care to explain all grammatical conventions as clearly as possible.

How Do I Choose the Best Portuguese Course for Me?

You could start with some simple questions:

  • Do you want to learn Brazilian or European Portuguese?
  • Are you willing to pay for the course? If so, how much?
  • Do you want to learn completely by yourself, or would you enjoy connecting with other people more? 
  • What’s your language learning style
  • Do you need Portuguese for a specific purpose, like business or vacation? 

By writing down your priorities and expectations, you can narrow this list of courses down to just one or two options that would suit your needs. Keep in mind that most of the paid courses have free trials available, so you can try them out without worrying about long-term financial commitments. 

What’s the Difference Between European Portuguese and Brazilian Portuguese?

European Portuguese and Brazilian Portuguese vary in terms of grammar, vocabulary use and (of course) pronunciation.

Though both varieties of Portuguese are usually understood everywhere, if you’re planning to visit a specific place or use Portuguese with speakers of a particular country, it may be worth sticking to learning Portuguese from that country. As we’ve mentioned earlier in the intro, Brazil and Portugal aren’t the only countries that use Portuguese!

Is Portuguese Hard to Learn?

While Portuguese isn’t the easiest language in the world to learn, it’s not the hardest, either.

If you have experience with other Romance languages such as Spanish, French or Italian, then Portuguese will come more easily to you. Spanish speakers in particular have an easier time as the two languages are very closely related—though Portuguese pronunciation is more challenging. 

Don’t worry too much about whether Portuguese is “hard” or not. Ultimately, your motivation is what matters the most. 

 

Online Portuguese courses are meant to be personalized experiences, so don’t be afraid to try out different options before settling on a resource that works for you.

Then, just keep practicing at your own pace, and you’ll soon find yourself reaching new levels of fluency!

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