IA in Portuguese – The conditional


Talking about what you would or were going to do is usually a fairly advanced grammar topic. It's called the preterite imperfect and we've covered it in an advanced post previously. But there is a hack* that you can use to say the same thing. And, you can use it in almost any situation! IA in Portuguese is one powerful "hack".

NOTE: *we're calling it a 'hack' because it's a shortcut, nothing incorrect or gringo about it. Brazilians use this all_the_time
ia = was going

Placing the ia just before any verb changes it to: was going to so-and-so. I don't mean to discourage you from using the 'official' conditional tense, but this is totally fine and common way of expressing the same thing.

Let's do some examples using ia in Portuguese.

Eu ia comer mas está cedo demais. » I was going to eat, but it's too early.
Ela ia sair mas... » She was going to go out but...
Eu ia te dizer que... » I was going to tell you that...
Ia dar certo mas... » It was going to work out until...
And in most cases it's really the same thing to say for example,

I was going to do THIS and I would do THAT.

That's why I'm encouraging you to use this quick and easy (and as I said: extremely regular) method for expressing the conditional mood - things that could or would happen.Another huge advantage is that you can avoid the verbs that are irregular in the conditional tense. For example:

Eu faria uma festa mas... BECOMES: Eu ia fazer uma festa mas... » I was going to to have a party but...

Entendeu agora?

I thought you were going to go out with that girl. » Eu achei que você ia sair com aquela garota.

Let's try to say, I was going to go to the beach but it's raining.

Eu iria à praia mas está chovendo. BECOMES: Eu ia à praia mas está chovendo.