Guatemalan Slang

Exploring the Vibrant World of Guatemalan Slang – 15 Must-Know Words

The Ultimate List of Guatemalan Slang

Learn the Top 15 Guatemalan Slang Expressions to Talk Like a Local

Language is a reflection of culture, and Guatemala is no exception. With its rich history and diverse population, Guatemala boasts a unique blend of indigenous Mayan languages, Spanish, and a variety of regional slang.

In this blog post, we’ll dive into the colorful world of Guatemalan slang and explore 15 must-know words that will help you better understand and connect with the local people.

Also for you: 25+ Roman Expressions

15 Guatemalan Slang Words and Expressions

Guatemalan Slang

1. Chapín / Chapina

This is the Spanish term used to refer to someone from Guatemala. While “Guatemalteco/a” is the official term, people in Guatemala often identify themselves as “chapines” instead. 

“Chapín” is used for men, while “chapina” is used for women.

2.  ¡Aguas! – Be careful!

In regular Spanish, agua means “water”. However, in Guatemala, it has a different meaning: “Careful!” or “Look out!”.

This term is also popular in other countries of Central America and Mexico.

3. Pisto – Money

It is a slang term used to refer to “money” or “cash,” specifically in its physical form.

4. Chispudo/a – Quick-witted or Clever

Chispa means “spark” in Spanish. The word Chispudo/a in Guatemalan slang is used to refer to someone who is very smart and clever. It is also used to describe someone who responds to requests quickly or someone that will grasp complicated concepts faster than the average.

5. Dos que tres – More or less / so-so

This phrase is used to describe something that was somehow good or enjoyable. 


  1. ¿Estuvo buena la fiesta? ¡Dos que tres! — Was the party any good? More or less!
  2. ¿Cómo te sientes? Dos que tres – How do you feel? So-so

6. Patojo/a – A Young Person or Kid

This term signifies a child or kid and is used in an affectionate and playful manner.

7. Boquitas – Snacks

This word is used as slang for munchies or, more commonly, as an alternative term for appetizers enjoyed before lunch or dinner.

8. Simón – Yes

Simón is a common way to agree or say yes. It is mostly used to respond affirmatively to a question.


¿Estás bien? ¡Simón! — Are you okay? Yes!

9. Clavo – A Serious Problem

Clavo literally means “nail” in English, but in Guatemalan slang, it is used to declare that you have a serious problem. 


Tengo un gran clavo. — I have a big problem.

10. Bochince – Crowded Chaos

A “bochinche” is when a group of people creates a clamor for a particular reason or cause. This phrase refers to chaos or disorder caused by crowds.

11. Chilero – Cool

This is an adjective used to describe something that is cool, awesome, or nice.

12. Chucho/a – Stray Dog

Chucho is usually used to refer to stray dogs.

However, it is also used as an adjective for someone who is greedy and cheap. 

13. Shute – Nosy

In Guatemalan slang, the word Shute is used to refer to someone who is extremely nosy or someone who wants to know everything about everyone.


¡No seas shute! – Don’t be nosy!

14. Pelar – To Gossip

Pelar means to gossip, criticize or talk behind someone’s back. This is a verb that can also be conjugated.

For example:

Ella te está pelando – She is gossiping about you.

No me gusta pelar a la gente. — I don’t like criticizing people.

15. Camioneta – Chicken Bus

Chicken buses are a staple of Guatemala. They’re old school buses that have been remodeled into public buses. They’re usually painted with multiple colors and designs.

Let’s Go To Guatemala!

Now that you know the essential words and phrases in Guatemalan slang, you’re ready to visit this beautiful country and talk with the locals. 

Do you need a new Spanish tutor? Get in touch with us! Our team of experienced professionals will respond within 24 hours, allowing you to start practicing your Italian skills immediately!



Share this post