I feel that "I need to go" should be accepted as well. The "out" isn't really necessary because "I need to go" has the same meaning. I know sair means to go out or to leave, but in this case it feels unnecessary to me.
I'm trying to understand the contexts where this could be ok...
But it's important to notice that the Portuguese verbs "sair" and "ir" are different.
When we want to say "I have to go (away)", we use "ir": "preciso ir (embora)".
We only use "sair" when inside something, and really meaning to "get/go out" of that place. So, it could replace "tenho que ir" in a chat room, for instance, where "going" necessarily implies "leaving the room". It might be used in a meeting room, meaning "leave the meeting (room)".
I guessed "I need to go out" - I reported that it should be accepted, but wondering if it might be wrong.
Also, wondering if there's another word for must in Portuguese... must and need are a bit different.
No. You're right to report. Although precisar may mean "need to" and "must", when "must" is used as an obligation we sometimes translate as "ter de" (=have to) or "dever". Example: você deve ir embora = you must go away.
Although both "must" and " have to" are used to express a strong obligation in English, there is a slight difference. "Have to" is used when some external circumstance makes the obligation necessary, whereas "must" expresses obligation imposed by the speaker. What about "ter que" and "precisar"? And "dever"?
In my opinion, "precisar" also sounds like a suggestion, so it is less strong than "ter de". "Dever" is much more emphatic.
How do they differ, or are they synonymous:
- Eu preciso sair
- Eu preciso partir
- Eu preciso deixar
eu preciso sair = I need to go out.
eu preciso partir = I need to go out (more poetic), I need to travel/go back.
eu preciso deixar = this sentence is incomplete. You always leave someone/something/somewhere. Eu preciso deixar esta casa = I really need to get out of this house / I can't take the house along with me.
"Partir" would be closer to "ir", meaning "I have to go/leave". But as Paulenrique said, "partir" is related to going on a journey and can be used in a more poetic way.
While "sair" really carries the "out" meaning. You must be inside something so you can say "sair".
We have always needed "precisar de", are we not using the "de" for the first time because it's implied with the infinitivity of the proceeding verb?
It's an exception for the verb "precisar". When followed by an infinitive verb, we don't use "de":
- Preciso de algo (I need something)
- Preciso ir (the real "I have to go" translation)
Does that mean "I need to go" (I’m at someone else’s house and I want to go back home) or "I need to go out" (I’m at home and lonely and I want to meet new people) ?
It means "go out". You are necessarily inside something so you can say that. (The "go out" and meet new people is included here)
In order to say "I have to go", we use "preciso ir". (Sair would be fine if you are in a chat room, or in a meeting room)
Thanks! And what’s the difference between "Eu preciso ir" and "Eu preciso ir embora"?
Almost the same as the difference between "I have to go" and "I have to go away".
Embora "embora" pareça mais suave que "away". (Althoug "embora" seems lighter than "away"). - Sorry, couldn't help playing with words.
We use "ir" and "ir embora" interchangeably daily, but we need "embora" if it's going to never come back.