How To Talk About Countries And Nationalities In Spanish

No, you can’t just say “Germano” and hope to get away with it.
A group of friends talking about their nationalities in Spanish on a sunny day at the park.

Think back to some of your earliest Spanish lessons. They probably involved learning how to ask someone where they’re from, and also express where you live and come from. You likely already know to call yourself estadounidense if you’re from the United States, or coreana if you’re from Korea. But do you know how to name the rest of the countries and nationalities in Spanish?

This is vocabulary that will generally come in handy if you have your ambitions set on becoming super worldly as a Spanish speaker. Or if you’re a political science major who is minoring in Spanish for your eventual career at the United Nations. You know, either of those two.

A few housekeeping (aka grammar) rules to keep in mind:

  • Nationalities follow the same rules as adjectives in Spanish, in the sense that they must agree with the gender of the subject. An Australian man would be australiano, and an Australian woman would be australiana.
  • The nationality descriptor must also agree with the subject in a second way: singular or plural form. So if you’re referring to one person, use the singular australiano. If it’s a pair or group of people, they would be australianos if they’re mostly men or if you’re referring to the population of Australia as a whole, and australianas if they’re mostly women.
  • Lastly, nationalities are not capitalized in Spanish, but country names are.

Below is a nearly complete list of the world’s countries and nationalities in Spanish. Keep this cheat sheet handy for the next time you need to impress your professor, win a trivia game or generally sound like you know what you’re talking about.

Countries And Nationalities In Spanish

A table showing Spanish countries and nationalities A through H. A table showing Spanish countries and nationalities G through P. A table containing Spanish countries and Nationalities Q through Z.

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