Pichar – Translation and Meaning in English

Sometimes you go out with your friends and you feel like paying what you all consume, as a result, in Mexico, we say ‘Pichar’. We also use this slang word when we want to ask a person to pay/buy something for us. So, depending on the context, ‘Pichar’ means ‘pay’, ‘be on me’ or ‘buy’.

What does ‘Pichar’ mean?

  • Translation #1: In Mexican slang, this word means ‘to be on me’. Generally speaking, Mexicans use this meaning to talk about food or drinks. As a result, it could also be replaced by ‘pay’.
  • Translation #2: It can also be used as a way to ask a person to invite or buy something for you.

How and When to use ‘Pichar’?

  • As a way to say that you’ll pay for something. Mexican people use ‘pichar’ when they want to invite their friends to eat or drink something but they are going to pay for it. Although it’s more common to hear ‘pichar’ when talking about food or drinks, you could also use it with other objects.
  • As a way to ask a person to invite or buy you something. In slang Mexican, we also use ‘pichar’ to ask a person to invite or buy something for us.
  • As a way to say that somebody bought/invited you something. Mexicans also use this word to say that a person bought something for them. However, in this situation, both you and the other person are together and since he or she saw that you like an object, they bought for you.


If you are still not sure about how to use ‘Pichar’, here are some useful examples where you can see the situations as well as how we use this word.

To say that you’ll pay for something

This is probably the most common use of the word ‘pichar’. As mentioned before, you use this slang word as a way to say that something is on you.

¡Juan! Te toca pichar la cena Juan! It’s your turn to pay for the dinner

Hoy yo picho las cervezas y las botanas Today the beers and snacks are on me

¿Tienes hambre? Vamos por unos tacos, yo te los picho Are you hungry? Let’s go for some tacos, they are on m

To ask another person to invite or buy something for you

Here is another common situation where Mexicans use this slang word.

Se me olvidó mi cartera, ¿me pichas unas papas? I forgot my wallet, could you buy those chips for me?

To say that somebody bought/invited you something

Mi hermana me pichó esta bolsa My sister bought me this bag

Carlos y Francisco nos picharon la cena Carlos and Francisco invited us the dinner

Who Can You Use This Word With?

Since this Mexican word is slang, you want to use it in very informal situations. In other words, it’s appropriated among your family and friends, but you don’t want to use it with people you don’t know. You also need to keep in mind that other Spanish speaking countries don’t use ‘Pichar’ as we use it in Mexico.

Other Ways to Say ‘Pichar’

Although this word is very popular, in Mexico we also have other synonyms that you could add to your vocabulary.

  • Disparar Even though this word is the direct translation of ‘shoot’, in Mexican slang, is also used as a synonym of ‘Pichar’. Therefore, you can use it in the same situations.
  • Invitar This word is perfect for more formal situations.
  • Comprar Remember that one of the meanings of ‘Pichar’ is to say that a person bought you something. As a result, you can use ‘comprar’ for those situations.

Daniela Sanchez

¡Hola! Soy Daniela Sanchez, I've been studying Spanish professionally as well as teaching it in Mexico and online for over 10 years. I’ve taught Spanish to a wide array of foreigners from many backgrounds. Over the years, I've made it my mission to work hard on refining many challenging to understand grammar topics to make my students' learning experiences easier, faster and more enjoyable. Read More About Me

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