How to say Good Luck in Spanish: ¡Suerte! and more
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Wishing someone the best of luck is natural in many cultures, and we certainly have a variety of expressions for wishing someone good luck in Spanish.
Whether you are an advanced student or a beginner, knowing how to wish the best to an acquaintance, a friend, or a family member in Spanish can come in handy if you want to strengthen those bonds.
Even if you don’t believe in superstitions, expressing good luck is a thoughtful way to show support to the people around you. Familiarizing yourself with the most common Spanish expressions for good luck will do the magic. It’s not even necessary to be familiar with every single phrase!
In this post, we’ll cover over a dozen different expressions for how to say good luck in Spanish. Some of them are formal, some are informal, and we’ll also keep things easy with some neutral phrases for wishing good luck in Spanish.
We’ll round out today’s post with some other Spanish expressions related to good luck that native speakers often use.
Now, without further ado, let’s start our lucky journey. ¡Buena suerte!
How to Wish Good Luck in Spanish
We’ll begin our lesson today with the most neutral way of wishing good luck, and then we’ll progress to other expressions that each have their own nuances. So how do you say good luck in Spanish? Let’s dive in and see all the different ways!
Literally, suerte means luck in Spanish. However, we also use ¡suerte! as a simple exclamation to wish good luck. We generally use it with Spanish exclamation marks to show enthusiasm and emotion.
This expression is very neutral, since it can be used just as easily with someone you’ve known for a while as with someone you’ve just met.
- Here you have all you need for the trip. Good luck! – Aquí tienes todo lo que necesitas para el viaje. ¡Suerte!
- We’re going to start the test now. Good luck to all of you! – Vamos comenzar con el examen ahora. ¡Suerte para todos!
For a comprehensive look at different exclamations, check out our post on exclamations and interjections in Spanish.
Buena suerte, Mucha suerte
Good luck, Lots of luck
Buena suerte and mucha suerte are both safe bets when wishing good luck in Spanish. These are essentially the direct translation of the English expression. They can both be used interchangeably when wishing luck, and they’re suitable in any level of formality.
- I’m going on vacation next week. / Good luck. I hope you have a great time. – Me voy de vacaciones la semana próxima. / Buena suerte. Espero que la pases muy bien.
- I have a job interview tomorrow. / Good luck. – Tengo una entrevista de trabajo mañana. / Mucha suerte.
Note that in many situations we can follow up our buena suerte with another phrase where we tell the person what we hope for them. We often use ojalá or espero que to start these phrases of what we hope for, followed by a verb in the subjunctive mood. We go into a lot more detail on how to do this in our post on wishes and desires. We touch on the subjunctive a bit more in our next Spanish good luck phrase!
Que te vaya bien, Que todo salga bien, Que tengas buena suerte
I wish you well, Hope everything goes well, Hope you have good luck
Here are three very similar expressions for good luck in Spanish that can all be used interchangeably. When used on their own, it’s because we already know the context for which we’re wishing the person well. We can also follow any of the phrases with whatever it is we’re wishing the person good luck on.
From a grammatical perspective, note that the verbs in these expressions are all conjugated in the subjunctive mood, since there’s some hypothetical aspect about whether or not the person will really have the good luck!
In addition, these versions are all conjugated with the informal tú version of the Spanish you. Remember to modify the conjugation if you’re addressing someone formally or in plural.
- I wish you well with your new business. – Que te vaya bien en tu nuevo emprendimiento.
- Hope everything goes well in the meeting with your boss. – Que todo salga bien en la reunión con tu jefe.
- Hope you have good luck in the elections. – Que tengas buena suerte en las elecciones.
Que tengas buena fortuna
May you have good fortune
This is another phrase many speakers use in Spanish for good luck. We generally say que tengas buena fortuna in formal situations, so it’s suitable in professional settings, at formal events, or when addressing someone with whom we have a formal relationship. Like the three expressions we saw in the last section, the verb here is conjugated to tú in the present subjunctive tense.
- May you have good fortune in your new project. – Que tengas buena fortuna en tu nuevo proyecto.
- May you have good fortune in this new area of the company. – Que tengas buena fortuna en esta nueva área de la empresa.
Mis mejores deseos
Mis mejores deseos translates literally as my best desires or my best wishes, though its better equivalent in English is simply best wishes.
This manner of wishing luck to someone is definitely more formal than the others we’ve seen so far. It’s suitable in a greeting card, in a formal e-mail, or in a formal statement.
- Best wishes for this new phase of the business. – Mis mejores deseos en esta nueva etapa del negocio.
- Best wishes to all the new graduates. – Mis mejores deseos para todos los nuevos graduados.
Éxito, Mucho éxito
Success, Much success
When we say éxito or mucho éxito, we are wishing success to someone in whatever they are doing. This is the go-to phrase for good luck Spanish speakers use when encouraging someone on a new endeavor.
Both versions are common enough. Still, mucho éxito is more emphatic than just éxito on its own, just like any phrase where we add mucho. We can also show more enthusiasm by wishing plural successes as éxitos!
- Wishing you much success in your new job. – Mucho éxito en tu nuevo trabajo.
- Good luck with your travels around the world. – Éxitos en tu viaje por el mundo.
Que Dios te bendiga
May God bless you
Que Dios te bendiga can be employed to extend wishes for someone’s prosperity, joy, and well-being. It serves as a means of conveying positive intentions and seeking the benevolent blessings of a higher power for someone we care about. This expression may be considered somewhat formal because of its religious tone, but many people still use it quite casually.
Like other expressions we’ve seen so far, this one also exhibits the subjunctive conjugation of the verb bendecir, meaning to bless. This version of the expression is directed at the tú form of Spanish you through the direct object pronoun te, so it can instead be directed to usted or ustedes by switching te out with se.
- Good luck with your new house, and God bless you. – Buena suerte con tu casa nueva y que Dios te bendiga.
- All the best for this new year, and may God bless you. – Todo lo mejor para este año nuevo y que Dios te bendiga.
Que te vaya de perlas
May it go perfectly for you
So far we’ve seen a number of ways for wishing the best of luck in Spanish that have been either neutral or somewhat formal. From here on, we’ll look at phrases to wish good luck in Spanish that are a lot more informal.
Que te vaya de perlas can be said to a friend or someone dear to your heart when you want to wish them well informally but with sincerity. This is an idiomatic expression, since the literal translation of perlas is actually pearls.
Like the previous expression, this one again uses the subjunctive and the direct object pronoun te.
- May it go perfectly for you in the contest. – Que te vaya de perlas en el concurso.
- May it go perfectly for you with your girlfriend. – Que te vaya de perlas con tu novia.
Que te salga todo redondo
May everything go smoothly
This is another informal way of wishing someone that all their endeavors, plans, or actions unfold seamlessly and successfully. Literally, que te salga todo redondo translates as may everything come out rounded for you, so our best equivalent in English is along the lines of may it all go smoothly for you.
- I hope everything goes smoothly for you next year. – Espero que te salga todo redondo el próximo año.
- We hope everything goes smoothly in your wedding. – Deseamos que te salga todo redondo en tu boda.
Cruzaré los dedos por ti
Cruzaré los dedos por ti can be translated literally as I will cross my fingers for you. Like this expression’s English counterpart, this is an informal way of wishing the best of luck to someone.
- Tomorrow I’ll meet my boss. I hope he gives me a promotion. / Fingers crossed. – Mañana me encuentro con mi jefe. Espero que me ascienda. / Cruzaré los dedos por ti.
Break a leg
This very informal phrase can be literally translated as lots of crap. This particular way of wishing good luck in Spanish was born in the theatre. Actors used to say mucha mierda to their colleagues before they stepped onto the stage, similarly to break a leg in English. Nowadays theatre people still use it, but its usage has transcended beyond the theatre realm.
Today, mucha mierda has become a playful phrase that people use to convey their well wishes in Spanish, in various walks of life.
- Break a leg on your new play. – Mucha mierda con tu nueva obra de teatro.
- Break a leg in your driving test. – Mucha mierda en el examen de manejo.
Go for it
This idiomatic phrase is used to say good luck in Spanish, while encouraging someone to do something at the same time. English equivalents are go for it!, do it!, or even the highly informal give’er!.
Let’s break down this phrase literally to understand its parts. Da in Spanish is the informal command form of dar, meaning to give. Le is the third-person singular indirect object pronoun, so dale can be understood as give to him or give to her. Duro is hard. Taken together, dale duro means something along the lines of give it all you’ve got!
- That’s so great that you’re opening a new restaurant. Go for it! I’m sure you’ll do very well. – Qué bueno que abres un restaurante nuevo. ¡Dale duro! Seguro te irá muy bien.
- Go for it in the game! – ¡Dale duro en el partido!
Other expressions related to Good Luck in Spanish
Throughout our post so far we focused on phrases of encouragement to wish people good luck in Spanish. A few of them were idiomatic, in that the literal translations were a bit different from their intent, while most could be translated directly between either English and Spanish.
To round out our post on different expressions in Spanish for good luck, this section presents a series of phrases that have some relation to luck. Most of them are very idiomatic, so we’ll give their literal translations in addition to their colloquial meanings.
Estar de racha
To be on a lucky streak, To be on a roll
Una racha is a streak, so when someone’s been consistently lucky for a noticeable stretch of time, we say that él or ella está de racha. This expression uses the verb estar.
Tener suerte de principiante
To have beginner’s luck
Un principiante is a beginner, and it uses the verb tener, meaning to have, so this expression translates literally as to have luck of a beginner. The English equivalent is beginner’s luck.
This phenomenon refers to when a novice tries something for the first time, like a new card game, and ends up winning. We say that such a person tiene suerte de principiante.
Pisar tierra de suerte
To step on lucky ground
Pisar tierra de suerte translates literally as to step on lucky ground. We use this expression to refer to someone in circumstances that are beneficial or lucky.
Tener buena piedra / Tener mala piedra
To be lucky / To be unlucky
Tener buena piedra translates literally as to have a good stone. Idiomatically, this expression simply means to have good luck in the case of tener buena piedra, and to have bad luck in the case of tener mala piedra.
To be lucky
Literally, tener estrella in English is to have a star. As an expression, we use tener estrella to describe someone who’s naturally lucky.
Tener el viento a favor
To be in a fortunate situation
Perhaps the origins of this expression can be traced back to sailors, since it translates literally as to have the wind in your favor. These days, if we say that someone tiene el viento a favor, it means that they’re lucky enough to be in an advantageous situation.
Tener el santo de espaldas
To be unfortunate
We use this phrase to describe someone who has bad fortune or who is constantly failing at whatever they’re doing. Literally, el santo is the saint, while espaldas mean back. This expression is essentially saying that the saint has turned his back to you.
Like many of the previous expressions we’ve just seen, tener el santo de espaldas relies on the verb tener, meaning to have. This expression is approximately the opposite of estar de racha that we saw above, which describes someone who’s on a roll.
Throughout today’s post we explored various options for how to say good luck in Spanish. From neutral to formal to informal, we covered over a dozen expressions in Spanish for good luck. For each one we saw their literal translations, we looked at their colloquial meanings, we examined their grammar, and we provided a couple of example sentences to see them each used in context.
From there we also went through a series of other Spanish expressions related to luck, mostly used to talk about people who seem to have more or less of it. Likewise, we looked at the literal and idiomatic meanings of each one, with a focus on what sort of circumstances they’re used in.
By incorporating these expressions into your conversations, you will not only display cultural understanding but also engage in a heartfelt exchange that will make you feel more connected to Spanish speakers. So, go ahead and offer these good luck wishes in Spanish to spread some positive vibes!