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The Top 100 Nouns in Spanish

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Did you know that every noun in Spanish has a gender? Once you learn the words on our Spanish nouns list, and study up on Spanish nouns gender rules, you’ll be able to recognize them and speed up your learning.

For even more words, you can check out the Spanish core 100-word list at SpanishPod101!

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Table of Contents
  1. What is a Noun in Spanish?
  2. Noun-Adjective Agreement in Spanish
  3. Essential Spanish Nouns to Know: Common Spanish Nouns List
  4. Conclusion


1. What is a Noun in Spanish?



Nouns 1

Nouns name or identify a person, animal, place, thing, or idea. Spanish nouns can be singular or plural, but the most important thing you need to know if you’re a Spanish learner is that nouns are always gendered. Let’s dig a little deeper into Spanish nouns’ gender.

Nouns in Spanish can be masculine or feminine. Crazy, huh? How do you know if a Spanish word is feminine or masculine? And what about plural vs. singular nouns?

It may take some time to get used to these rules, but once you get the hang of it, you’ll be able to do this without even thinking!

To recognize the plural nouns in Spanish, you’ll see these words end in the letter -s. If you don’t see the -s, the Spanish noun is singular, will normally end with one of the following vowels: -a, -e, or -o.

To determine the gender of nouns in Spanish:
  • Feminine nouns in Spanish will end with an -a.

  • Masculine nouns in Spanish will end with an -e or -o.

The idea of gender nouns in Spanish can be confusing at first because there are some nouns in Spanish that don’t follow the rules above.

For example el sol, or “the sun,” ends with the consonant -l. In cases like this, the article will tell you which gender a noun is (unlike in English). Most nouns are used together with an article, like in this example. El tells you the noun is masculine, even if the noun itself doesn’t provide that information.

In English, the articles “the” or “a(n)” accompany nouns. In Spanish, here are two translations:

Masculine articles:
  • Singular: el
  • Plural: los

Example:
  • El sol brilla todas las mañanas.
    “The sun shines every morning.”

  • Yo voy a misa todos los domingos.
    “I go to church every Sunday.”

Feminine articles:
  • Singular: la
  • Plural: las

  • La luna está llena hoy.
    “We have a full moon today.”

  • Las puertas están abiertas hasta las 22 h.
    “Doors are opened until 10 p.m.”


Possessive pronouns in Spanish can also help you to identify the gender of the noun. Why? Because of their ending vowel of -o or -a.

For example:

  • La cama es mía.
    “The bed is mine.”

  • El coche es mío.
    “The car is mine.”


The examples above also show you that you have to use the possessive pronouns in Spanish depending on the gender of the object. In this case, if you’re a man and you want to talk about “the house,” which in Spanish is a feminine object, you have to say La casa es mía (“The house is mine”).

2. Noun-Adjective Agreement in Spanish



Nouns 2

The noun-adjective agreement is another essential aspect of Spanish nouns for beginners. Adjectives can help you identify the gender of a noun in Spanish. If the noun in Spanish is feminine, the adjective should be feminine:
  • Mi novia es tímida.
    “My girlfriend is shy.”

If the noun in Spanish is masculine, the adjective should be masculine:
  • Mi hermano es alto.
    “My brother is tall.”

This noun-adjective agreement in Spanish can also help you with singular and plural nouns in Spanish:

  • Mi coche es pequeño.
    “My car is small.”

  • Los autobuses son grandes.
    “Buses are big.”

There are some nouns in Spanish that are neutral or of ambiguous gender. How can you identify them? By the articles.

  • La atleta
    “Female athlete”

  • El atleta
    “Male athlete”

Some Spanish plural nouns exceptions include:

Nouns that end in -z, such as pez (“fish”), should end in -ces: Peces.

If the noun in Spanish ends in a consonant, you should add -es.

  • Doctor
    “Doctor”

  • Doctores
    “Doctors”

When you’re referring to a group of things or people, when there’s at least one masculine noun in Spanish, you should refer to the entire group as masculine:

  • 1 perro + 3 perra = Los perros.
  • “1 male dog + 3 female dogs = The dogs [masculine].”

Without nouns, we wouldn’t be able to name people, things, or ideas, so we need them for everything. This is why in Spanish, this is one of the first things you should learn, together with verbs, which are a basic Spanish grammar lesson.

Once you’ve stopped by our page on the Top 25 Nouns, you may want to learn more—and you’re in the right place! In the next part of this lesson, we’ll go over common Spanish nouns by category, and allow you to see each of these Spanish nouns in a sentence!

Without further ado, our key Spanish nouns list.

3. Essential Spanish Nouns to Know: Common Spanish Nouns List



Nouns 3

1- “Appliances” (Electrodomésticos)


Televisión — “TV”

La televisión está encendida.
“The TV is on.”

Ordenador portátil — “Laptop”

Mi hermano me ha roto mi ordenador portátil.
“My brother broke my laptop.”

Frigorífico — “Fridge”

He visto a mi hermano quien estaba buscando comida en el frigorífico.
“I saw my brother, who was looking for food in the refrigerator.”

Aire acondicionado — “Air conditioner”

Los aires acondicionados son bastante costosos.
“Air conditioners are very expensive.”

Secador de pelo — “Hairdryer”

Yo tenía un secador muy bueno.
“I used to have a good hairdryer.”

Ventilador — “Fan”

Cuando encendí el ventilador, mis deberes volaron por todo el cuarto.
“When I turned on the fan, my homework blew all over the room.”

Microondas — “Microwave”

¿Ponemos las palomitas en el microondas?
“Shall we put the popcorn in the microwave?”

Lavadora — “Washing machine”

Se me ha roto la lavadora.
“My washing machine is broken.”

Cocina — “Stove”

Hay tres ollas en la cocina.
“There are three pans on the stove.”

2- “Technology” (Tecnología)


Technology

Móvil — “Mobile phone”

Hoy día hay móviles por todo el mundo.
“Nowadays there are mobile phones everywhere.”

Blog — “Blog”

Todas las empresas deberían tener un blog.
“Every company should have a blog.”

Aplicación — “App”

Puedes buscar cualquier cosa en la aplicación.
“You can search for anything on their app.”

Página web — “Website”

Estaba visitando tu página web; es increíble.
“I was looking at your website; it’s amazing.”

Cuenta — “Account”

¿Tienes cuenta de Instagram?
“Do you have an Instagram account?”

Foto — “Picture”

Las fotos están muy pequeñas.
“The pictures are too small.”

Descargar — “Download”

¿Me puedes descargar estas fotos?
“Can you download these pictures?”

Contraseña — “Password”

Se me olvidó la contraseña de mis redes sociales.
“I forgot my password to my social media accounts.”

Archivo — “File”

No has agregado el archivo al correo.
“You did not attach the file to the email.”

Correo basura — “Spam”

Me ha llegado tu correo al correo basura.
“I got your email in my spam.”

Tablet — “Tablet”

Voy a subir todas mis fotos desde mi tablet a mi Facebook.
“I will upload all my pictures from my tablet to my Facebook.”

Wifi — “Wifi”

¿Hay wifi aquí?
“Do you have wifi here?”

3- “Transportation” (Transporte)


Traffic Lights

Avión — “Plane”

El avión a París tiene dos horas de retraso.
“The plane to Paris has a two-hour delay.”

Tren — “Train” / Metro — “Subway”

Cada día cojo dos trenes y el metro para llegar al trabajo.
“I take two trains and the subway to get to work every day.”

Bicicleta — “Bike”

La bicicleta es el mejor método de transporte en Amsterdam.
“The bike is the best transportation method in Amsterdam.”

Autobús — “Bus”

Los autobuses son un desastre en Medellín; nunca llegan a tiempo.
“Buses are a mess in Medellin; they’re never on time.”

Estación de tren — “Train station”

¿En qué estación de tren bajas?
“In which train station do you get off?”

Parada — “Bus stop”

En cinco paradas me bajo.
“In five bus stops I’ll get off.”

Semáforo — “Traffic light”

Fíjate en los semáforos o algún día tendrás un accidente.
“Look at the traffic lights, otherwise you’ll have an accident one day.”

Patinete eléctrico — “Electric scooter”

Los patinetes eléctricos causan muchos accidentes a los peatones.
“Electric scooters cause a lot of pedestrian accidents.”

Carretera — “Road”

¿Cuál es la carretera que llega más rápido a tu casa?
“What is the fastest road to your home?”

Taxi — “Taxi”

En Nueva York los taxis son amarillos.
“Taxis in New York are yellow.”

Intersección — “Intersection”

La intersección camino al centro es súper peligrosa.
“The intersection on the way to the center is very dangerous.”

4- “Restaurant” (El restaurante)


Restaurant Tableware

Copa — “Glass”

La copa está llena de vino blanco.
“The glass is full of white wine.”

Jarra — “Jug”

¿Me traes una jarra de agua, por favor?
“Can I have a jug of water, please?”

Plato — “Plate”

Mi plato está sucio.
“My plate is dirty.”

Tenedor — “Fork”

El arroz no se come con tenedor.
“Rice is not eaten with a fork.”

Cuchara — “Spoon”

En la India se comen el arroz con cuchara.
“In India, the rice is eaten with a spoon.”

Cuchillo — “Knives”

Tenemos muchos tenedores, cucharas y cuchillos.
“We have many forks, spoons, and knives.”

Vaso — “Glass”

El vaso está lleno de whiskey.
“The drinking glass is full of whiskey.”

Taza — “Mug”

Mi taza favorita es la rosa.
“My favorite mug is the pink one.”

5- “School essentials” (Lo esencial para volver a clase)


Writing Utensils

Bolígrafo or Boli — “Pen”

¿Me puedes prestar un boli?
“Can I borrow a pen?”

Asignatura — “Subject”

Mi asignatura favorita en la escuela eran las matemáticas.
“My favorite subject in school was math.”

Universidad — “University”

Sarah era mi mejor amiga en la universidad.
“Sarah was my best friend at university.”

Deberes — “Homework”

El niño está haciendo los deberes.
“The boy is doing homework.”

Beca — “Scholarship”

He recibido una beca completa de la Universidad de Brighton.
“I have received a full scholarship from University of Brighton.”

Mochila — “Backpack”

Cómprale la mochila de color negro.
“Buy the black backpack.”

Cuaderno — “Notebook”

Se me perdió el cuaderno.
“I have lost my notebook.”

6- “Occupation” (Profesiones)


Men and Women Different Occupations

Enfermero — “Nurse”

Este hombre es un enfermero.
“This man is a nurse.”

Empresario — “Executive”

Los empresarios están teniendo una reunión en la sala de juntas.
“The executives are having a meeting in the boardroom.”

Policía — “Police”

El oficial de policía no tiene su uniforme.
“The police officer does not have his uniform.”

Cocinero — “Cook”

El cocinero está asando el cerdo.
“The cook is barbecuing pork.”

Encargado — “Manager”

El encargado del supermercado está dando instrucciones.
“The store manager is giving instructions.”

Atleta — “Athlete”

Mi mejor amiga es atleta profesional.
“My best friend is a professional athlete.”

Ingeniero — “Engineer”

Mi hermano es ingeniero en Apple.
“My brother is an engineer at Apple.”

Profesor — “Teacher”

Mi madre es profesora.
“My mother is a teacher.”

Médico — “Doctor”

Luisa estudió mucho para ser médico.
“Luisa studied a lot to become a doctor.”

Bombera — “Firewoman”

Sofía quiere ser bombera.
“Sofia wants to be a firewoman.”

Bibliotecaria — “Librarian”

Mi tía es bibliotecaria.
“My auntie is a librarian.”

7- “Family members” (Miembros de la familia)


Family Having Ice Cream

Familia — “Family”

La familia está en la foto.
“The family is in the picture.”

Madre — “Mother” / Padre — “Father”

Mi madre y mi padre estuvieron casados por 30 años.
“My mother and father were married for 30 years.”

Hija — “Daughter”

El padre está mirando a su hija.
“The father is looking at his daughter.”

Hijo — “Son”

Mi hijo ha estudiado hasta ahora dos carreras.
“My son has studied for two BAs so far.”

Mamá — “Mom”

¡Ayuda a mamá! Está llevando la cesta de las toallas ella sola.
“Help mom! She is carrying the towel basket by herself.”

Abuela — “Grandmother”

La abuela se está comiendo un plátano.
“Grandma is eating a banana.”

Tío — “Uncle”

Mi tío tiene un hijo adoptado precioso.
“My uncle has a beautiful adopted child.”

Tía — “Aunt”

¿Es esa tu tía la peluquera?
“Is that your aunt who is a hairdresser?”

Hermano — “Brother”

Mi hermano pertenece al equipo de fútbol de la universidad.
“My brother belongs to the university football team.”

Hermana — “Sister”

Mi hermana está estudiando para ser policía.
“My sister is studying to be a police officer.”

8- “Body parts” (Partes del cuerpo)


Girl Jumping and Dancing

Pie — “Foot”

Su pie derecho es más grande que el izquierdo.
“His right foot is bigger than his left one.”

Mano — “Hand”

La mujer se está lavando las manos.
“The woman is washing her hands.”

Cabeza — “Head”

Deberías usar casco para proteger tu cabeza.
“You should wear a helmet to protect your head.”

Brazo — “Arm”

El niño está levantando los brazos.
“The child is raising his arms.”

Espalda — “Back”

Mi hermano se ha hecho daño en la espalda por levantar cosas pesadas ayer. “My brother hurt his back by lifting heavy things yesterday.”

Pecho — “Chest”

Tengo dolor en el pecho.
“I have a pain in my chest.”

Cuerpo — “Body”

Mi hijo está aprendiendo sobre el cuerpo humano.
“My son is learning about the human body.”

Dedo — “Finger”

Me he hecho daño en el dedo meñique.
“I hurt my pinkie finger.”

Ojo — “Eye”

Se quemó ambos ojos.
“He burned both his eyes.”

Oído — “Ear”

Solo puede escuchar por un oído.
“He can only hear from one ear.”

9- “Time” (Fechas)


Planning Schedule

Ayer — “Yesterday”

Ayer por la tarde me tomé la medicina.
“I took the medicine yesterday afternoon.”

Vez — “Time”

He perdido la cartera tres veces.
“I have lost my purse three times.”

Vida — “Life”

Me gusta el yoga como estilo de vida.
“I like yoga as a lifestyle.”

Año — “Year”

Me gusta ir a Italia todos los años.
“I like to go to Italy every year.”

Tiempo — “Time”/”Weather”

En México siempre hace buen tiempo.
“In Mexico, we always have good weather.”

¿Cuánto tiempo tarda la tarta?
“How long would the cake take?”

Día — “Day”

Espero que tengas un buen día de trabajo.
“I hope you have a good day at work.”

Calendario — “Calendar”

¿Cuál es el calendario de festivos de este 2019?
“Which is the holiday calendar for this 2019?”

Mañana — “Tomorrow”

Mañana tengo el día muy ocupado.
“I have a very busy day tomorrow.”

10- “Food” (Alimentos)


Food Bag

Agua — “Water”

Dicen que es bueno beber dos litros de agua al día.
“It is said that it’s good to drink two liters of water a day.”

Carne — “Meat”

Los vegetarianos no comen nada de carne.
“Vegetarians don’t eat meat at all.”

Pescado — “Fish”

¿Cuál es el mejor pescado de la ciudad?
“What is the best fish in town?”

Pollo — “Chicken”

¡No te comas mi pollo!
“Don’t eat my chicken!”

Leche — “Milk”

Me gusta el té con leche.
“I like tea with milk.”

Sopa/Crema — “Soup”

Mi madre hace la mejor sopa de invierno.
“My mom makes the best winter soup.”

Verduras — “Vegetables”

Yo compro las verduras en el mercado local.
“I buy the vegetables in the local market.”

Cerdo — “Pork”

Los musulmanes no comen cerdo.
“Muslims don’t eat pork.”

Ternera — “Beef”

Mi plato favorito es la sopa de vegetales con ternera.
“My favorite dish is vegetable soup with beef.”

Vino — “Wine”

Siempre me tomo una copa de vino con todas mis comidas.
“I always have a glass of red wine with my meals.”

Pan — “Bread”

¿Me trae pan, por favor?
“Could you please bring me some bread?”

Cerveza — “Beer”

Dos cervezas más para la mesa cinco.
“Two more beers to table five.”

4. Conclusion



Nouns 4

Once you familiarize yourself with this Spanish nouns list, start using them in context by trying them out in your conversations. Don’t worry about the feminine and masculine uses in your Spanish nouns practice at first; this will come automatically. You can master your Spanish skills with SpanishPod101, using our fun and practical learning tools for every learner!

Before you go, drop us a comment to let us know if there are any Spanish nouns or grammar rules you’re still struggling with. We’d love to hear from you!

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Learn Gender in Spanish: Spanish Gender Rules

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The gender of nouns in Spanish is part of a noun’s identity. We won’t be able to use a noun correctly without its corresponding article. If English (or another language with genderless nouns) is your first language, you probably freaked out when you found out that nouns have gender in Spanish. We admit that it does sound a little scary at first.

But hey, if it makes you feel better, at least Spanish isn’t like German, which has three genders, or like Polish, which has a few more than that. Or Swedish, which has two genders that aren’t feminine or masculine. There are many languages that use genders.

Fortunately, we only have two genders, and we plan on keeping them. They might not always make sense to a foreigner (I mean, why would a chair be feminine?), but they do make sense to us and it would sound really funny if someone didn’t use them right. This is why we’re about to teach you all you need to know about gender in Spanish.

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Table of Contents

  1. Spanish Language Gender Rules: How Does it Work?
  2. How to Make a Good Guess on the Gender of a Word
  3. How to Memorize the Gender of a Word
  4. Animals
  5. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn More Spanish

1. Spanish Language Gender Rules: How Does it Work?

Let’s start with something simple: the word for “gender” in Spanish is género, and our two genders are femenino (“feminine” ) and masculino (“masculine” ). That’s easy; everyone knows these two genders.

Now, how is the Spanish language affected by gender? As we mentioned previously, this topic mostly revolves around nouns. That means that every noun has one gender or the other, and that the words around it (which are articles, adjectives, and sometimes, pronouns) must match that gender.

However, we’re going to be mostly focusing on the gender of Spanish nouns, and will help you a little bit with adjectives and articles. The reason we won’t be talking about pronouns is because we’ll be publishing an article about pronouns soon, so keep your eyes peeled! If you can’t wait, check out our list of the most useful Spanish pronouns.

Feminine and Maculine

1 – Articles

The most common structure for nouns in Spanish is (article) + noun + (adjective), so we’re going to follow this structure and talk about Spanish article gender rules first.

In English, there are two articles, which are “the” and “a(n),” but Spanish has a few more. Don’t let this frighten you, but we have a total of eight articles. Yes, eight. The reason we have so many is because they change according to both gender and number.

Definite articles (“the” ) → “the kid” or “the kids”

  • Masculine, singular: el → el niño
  • Feminine, singular: la → la niña
  • Masculine, plural: los → los niños
  • Feminine, plural: las → las niñas

Indefinite articles (“a,” “an,” “some” ) → “a kid” or “some kids”

  • Masculine, singular: un → un niño
  • Feminine, singular: una → una niña
  • Masculine, plural: unos → unos niños
  • Feminine, plural: unas → unas niñas

Children Wearing Costumes

2 – Nouns

As you know, when talking about genders in Spanish, nouns are the most important. Basically, each noun has been assigned to be masculine or feminine. We don’t really get a say in this; we’ve all learned that this is the way Spanish works and we’ve accepted it.

Spanish mostly comes from Latin, which also has genders (three, actually), so a lot of these genders have just been passed on from Latin or other languages that have influenced Spanish over the centuries.

We could say some of these genders make more sense than others. For example, la mujer (“the woman” ) is obviously feminine, but un brazo (“an arm” ) is masculine and una pierna (“a leg” ) is feminine. We can’t really explain why, other than the ending of these words.

3 – Adjectives

Adjectives, just like articles, need to “agree” in number and gender with the noun they’re modifying. All adjectives change when it comes to number, so when the noun next to it is in the plural form, the adjective will need an -s at the end (or -es sometimes).

However, gender is a little bit different. In this sense, there are different kinds of adjectives. Whenever an adjective ends in -o in its masculine form, it has a masculine and a feminine form. For example: blanco / blanca (“white” ). This is the most common type of adjective.

Some other adjectives, however, don’t change. These are all adjectives that end in -e, in consonants, or some trickier ones to see, in -ista. Here are some examples: grande (“big” ), gris (“gray” ), and realista (“realistic” ).

There are some exceptions to Spanish gender rules for adjectives ending in consonants, which are the following endings: -or, -ón, -ol, -án, -ín, and -és. For example: alemán / alemana (“German” ) and francés / francesa (“French” ).

For more information, you might want to check out our article on adjectives. You might also be interested in this list of adjectives that describe personalities.

2. How to Make a Good Guess on the Gender of a Word

Let’s focus on nouns properly this time. How do you know if a Spanish word is masculine or feminine?

As we’ve mentioned, nouns dictate the gender of everything that surrounds them, so we need to know what gender a noun is before we know what article or adjective we want to use next to it.

Something that you should always remember is that when talking about a group of people or animals that includes both males and females, we always use the masculine form of the noun. For example:

Tengo cuatro perros: dos machos y dos hembras.
“I have four dogs: two males and two females.”

  • Words that end in -o or -a

There are two things that you need to keep in mind to know if a word is feminine or masculine.

The first thing is that words that end in -o are most likely masculine. Examples: un zapato (“a shoe” ) and un vaso (“a glass” ).

The second thing is that words that end in -a are most likely feminine. Examples: una taza (“a cup” ) and una casa (“a house” ).

But of course, there are exceptions to this rule: una mano (“a hand” ), un mapa (“a map” ), un día (“a day” )…There are also words like moto and foto, which are feminine words but aren’t really exceptions, because they actually come from motocicleta (“motorbike” ) and fotografía (“photography” ) respectively.

  • Other masculine words

There are some other exceptions that also follow rules. For example, words that end in -ma are masculine words, such as un problema (“a problem” ) and el alma (“the soul” ).

Other masculine words that don’t end in -o are those that end in -or, such as el color (“the color” ) or el humor (“the humor” ). However, as always, there are exceptions to the exception. A common example of this is la flor, which is a feminine word that means “the flower.”

  • Other feminine words

Words that end in -sión, -ción, -dad or -tad, -tud, or -umbre are always feminine words. Examples: una presión (“a pressure” ), una transformación (“a transformation” ), una cantidad (“a quantity” ), la libertad (“the freedom” ), una solicitud (“a request” ), la servidumbre (“the servitude” ), etc.

  • Other exceptions to gender rules in Spanish

There are some words that have random endings. Thankfully, there aren’t that many, but we should still consider them. For example, un lápiz, which means “a pencil,” has an unusual ending, -z.

3. How to Memorize the Gender of a Word

Man Memorizing Something

When learning a noun, it might be useful to learn it together with its corresponding article, especially when it’s not a typical word with an -o or -a ending.

There are some nouns that refer to animals and people that might have two different forms, such as the example we gave you when we listed the different articles there are in Spanish: niño means “kid,” but depending on whether it ends in -o or -a, it will refer to a boy or a girl respectively.

When it comes to professions, some nouns have the same form whether they’re masculine or feminine, and some change their ending. For example, artista means “artist” and it refers to both men and women. But if you want to talk about the person who delivers your mail, you’ll talk about a cartero or a cartera, depending on his or her gender.

The main Spanish dictionary, Diccionario de la Real Academia Española (DRAE), always indicates the gender of the noun (m. or f.). For example, the world cumpleaños, which means “birthday,” has the letter m. for masculine. In the case of adjectives, it always shows first the masculine form, and then the ending of the feminine form. One example is the adjective rojo, which means “red.” As you can see, it appears as rojo, ja, to show you both endings. If the adjective only has one form, it doesn’t give you any more information.

There are many activities and games you could try to help you memorize the gender of a noun, such as quizzes or flashcards that include an article or an adjective in the correct gender of the nouns you want to learn.

Our vocabulary lists also state what the gender of a noun is. For example, you can see it in this list of the 50 most common nouns in Mexican Spanish, or in this list of the 100 core Spanish words.

4. Animals

When it comes to animals, Spanish can be a little strange, we admit. Some words for animals are masculine, and some are feminine. Others, as mentioned before, can have a different ending—or even be completely different words. Just like with other nouns, it might not always make sense for an animal to be masculine or feminine, but it’s still important.

Before we get started with this, there’s a joke about animals and Spanish genders that might help you understand this whole thing:

A British man and a Spanish man are fishing when the British man sees a fly and says: “Look, un mosca.” The Spanish man corrects him: “No, it’s una mosca.” The British man responds: “Wow, you Spaniards have really good eyesight.”

Obviously, you understand that this is not about eyesight, but of knowing that the words we use to name animals have genders that might not be the same as their actual gender.

Dogs, Cat, Bird, Snake and Mouse

Feminine animals

  • Una cebra (“a zebra” )
  • Una mosca (“a fly” )
  • Una oveja (“a sheep” )
  • Una cabra (“a goat” )
  • Una vaca (“a cow” )
  • Una araña (“a spider” )

Masculine animals

  • Un elefante (“an elephant” )
  • Un caracol (“a snail” )
  • Un loro (“a parrot” )
  • Un pez (“a fish” )
  • Un pavo (“a turkey” )
  • Un pájaro (“a bird” )

Different endings

  • Un perro/una perra (“a dog” )
  • Un gato/una gata (“a cat” )
  • Un cerdo/una cerda (“a pig” )
  • Un león/una leona (“a lion” )
  • Un oso/una osa (“a bear” )

Different words

  • Un caballo (“a horse” ) / una yegua (“a mare” )
  • Un gallo (“a rooster” ) / una gallina (“a hen” )

Two Horses

When talking about an animal that might have different word endings depending on its gender, we normally use the masculine form first if we don’t know the actual gender of the animal.

For a few more examples of animals in Spanish, take a look at this vocabulary list of animal names.

5. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn More Spanish

We know that learning gender in Spanish isn’t easy, but it’s very important. You must keep in mind that it’s all about getting used to the genders; once you do, you won’t even have to think about them. They’ll just come to you. So give it a chance and you’ll see it’s not that difficult!

At SpanishPod101.com, you’ll find everything you need to learn Spanish. In this article, we mostly talked about nouns, but we’ve also mentioned articles and adjectives, so this could be a good time to read about adverbs too. You might be interested in learning how to get around in Spanish, or maybe you would like to improve your pronunciation.

Did we talk about anything in this article that you’re still uncertain about? Or do you feel much more confident with Spanish noun genders? Let us know in the comments; we look forward to hearing from you!

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Your Guide to the Most Common Spanish Prepositions

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In a sentence, prepositions are the glue that connects pronouns, nouns, and other words to convey the most accurate meaning and reveal the relationship between them. Spanish prepositions are no different than prepositions in other languages.

If you asked any educated Spaniard about Spanish prepositions, they would tell you that they still remember the list of prepositions in alphabetical order they had to learn in school. This list has changed slightly over the years. A couple of them have been deleted, and a few more have been added.

The current official list is: a, ante, bajo, cabe, con, contra, de, desde, durante, en, entre, hacia, hasta, mediante, para, por, según, sin, so, sobre, tras, versus, vía.

Some of us learned a similar list, but durante and mediante were at the end because they were the newest additions. Now there are even more, though there are some prepositions in the list that aren’t used anymore—if you asked a Spanish speaker, they might not even know what they mean.

Man Shrugging His Shoulders

This is not the way we’re going to learn in this Spanish prepositions guide today. There’s no point in just learning a long list of prepositions in alphabetical order, so we’re going to list the most common Spanish prepositions with examples, and explain how you can use each of them. We’re also going to organize them in a way that will actually help you learn them and understand their functions.

With SpanishPod101, understanding Spanish prepositions is simple!

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Table of Contents

  1. What is a Preposition?
  2. 23 Most Common Prepositions
  3. So… When Do We Use Them?
  4. Change of Forms
  5. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn More Spanish

1. What is a Preposition?

Prepositions are words that can go in front of a noun phrase, such as a noun (that might also carry an article or an adjective with it) or a pronoun.

Prepositions can have different functions. For example, Spanish prepositions for location help express where something happens, while Spanish prepositions of time mark when that thing happens.

The best thing about Spanish prepositions—something you’ll most likely appreciate—is that in Spanish, there’s no possible confusion with certain prepositions such as “in,” “on,” and “at” in English. Instead, if we’re in/at/on a place, we only use en. We do have a preposition that translates to “on,” but it’s only used when something is on top of something else.

2. 23 Most Common Prepositions

We’re going to start with a list of the twenty-three most common prepositions in Spanish. We’ve omitted a few that aren’t used or that you’ll never need, but we have included compound prepositions—also known as Spanish prepositional phrases—that are often not considered prepositions. You might not have found these words in a different list even though they’re used very often. We’ll provide an example for each different use a given preposition has.

Here’s our list of Spanish prepositions and when to use them:

1- A

  • Motion (“to” )

Example: Después del trabajo me voy a la playa.
Translation: “After work, I’m going to the beach.”

  • Time (“at” )

Example: Te veo a las dos en punto.
Translation: “I’ll see you at two o’clock.”

  • Indirect object (“to”/”for” )

Example: Le he hecho una tarta a mi abuela.
Translation: “I have made a cake for my grandma.”

Cake with Icing

2- Bajo

  • Location (“under” )

Example: Los peces viven bajo el mar.
Translation: “Fish live under the sea.”

3- Con

  • Relation (“with” )

Example: Estoy cenando con Carlos.
Translation: “I’m eating dinner with Carlos.”

4- Contra

  • Relation (“against” )

Example: No tengo nada contra tu mujer.
Translation: “I have nothing against your wife.”

5- De

  • Relation (“of”/possessive “’s” )

Example: Esta chaqueta es de Sara.
Translation: “This jacket is Sara’s.”

  • Location (“from” )

Example: Soy de Barcelona.
Translation: “I’m from Barcelona.

6- Delante de

  • Location (“in front of” )

Example: Estoy delante de tu casa.
Translation: “I’m in front of your house.”

7- Desde

  • Time (“since” )

Example: Conozco a Pablo desde que teníamos cuatro años.
Translation: “I’ve known Pablo since we were four years old.”

  • Location (“from” )

Example: Ayer corrimos desde el parque hasta la playa.
Translation: “Yesterday we ran from the park to the beach.”

Man and Woman Running

8- Detrás de

  • Location (“behind” )

Example: ¡Vigila! ¡Detrás de ti!
Translation: “Watch out! Behind you!”

9- Durante

  • Time (“during” )

Example: No te puedes levantar durante la ceremonia.
Translation: “You can’t stand up during the ceremony.”

10- En

  • Location (“in”/”at”/”on” )

Example: Estoy en casa.
Translation: “I’m at home.”

11- Encima de

  • Location (“on top of” )

Example: Hay un lápiz roto encima de la libreta.
Translation: “There is a broken pencil on top of the notebook.”

Broken Pencil on Notebook

12- Enfrente de

  • Location (“in front of” )

Example: Van a abrir una biblioteca enfrente de tu casa.
Translation: “They’re opening a library in front of your house.”

13- Entre

  • Location (“between” )

Example: Mi casa está entre dos árboles.
Translation: “My house is between two trees.”

  • Time (“between” )

Example: Cenamos entre las ocho y las nueve.
Translation: “We eat dinner between eight and nine.”

  • Relation (“among” )

Example: Entre otras cosas, me gusta leer.
Translation: “Among other things, I like reading.”

14- Hacia

  • Location (“toward” )

Example: Voy hacia el mercado.
Translation: “I’m heading toward the market.”

  • Time (“around” )

Example: Nos vemos hacia las dos.
Translation: “I’ll see you around two.”

15- Hasta

  • Time (“until” )

Example: Mi hermano vivió con nosotros hasta que se casó.
Translation: “My brother lived with us until he got married.”

  • Location (“until” )

Example: ¿Nadamos hasta el final de la piscina?
Translation: “Should we swim until the end of the swimming pool?”

16- Para

  • Relation (“for” )

Example: Esta tarta es para el cumpleaños de mi madre.
Translation: “This cake is for my mom’s birthday.”

  • Purpose (“to” )

Example: Estoy estudiando para ser arquitecto.
Translation: “I am studying to be an architect.”

17- Por

  • Relation (“for” )

Example: Lo hice por ti.
Translation: “I did it for you.”

  • Relation (“by” )

Example: Escrito por Ana María Matute.
Translation: “Written by Ana María Matute.”

18- Según

  • Relation (“according to” )

Example: Según nos ha dicho Juana, no te encontrabas bien.
Translation: “According to what Juana told us, you weren’t feeling well.”

19- Sin

  • Relation (“without” )

Example: No sé qué haría sin ti.
Translation: “I don’t know what I would do without you.”

20- Sobre

  • Location (“on” )

Example: Siempre dejamos las llaves sobre la mesa.
Translation: “We always leave the keys on the table.”

  • Relation (“about” )

Example: ¿Te puedo hacer una pregunta sobre Carla?
Translation: “Can I ask you something about Carla?”

21- Tras

  • Time (“after” )

Example: No fue la misma tras la muerte de su marido.
Translation: “She wasn’t the same after her husband’s death.”

  • Location (“behind” )

Example: Escóndete tras la puerta.
Translation: “Hide behind the door.”

Girl Hiding Behind Door

22- Versus

  • Relation (“versus” )

Example: ¿Vas a ver el partido del Barça versus el Real Madrid?
Translation: “Are you going to watch the Barça versus Real Madrid match?”

23- Vía

  • Relation (“through” )

Example: Te contactaré vía correo electrónico o teléfono.
Translation: “I will contact you through email or phone.”

3. So… When Do We Use Them?

To sum it up, we’ve decided to organize the previous list in a few very basic groups. Keep in mind that some prepositions might be included in more than one list. And don’t worry, we’ll remind you of their meanings.

Here’s a rundown of Spanish prepositions usage based on category:

1- Prepositions of Location

First of all, here’s the group that has the most prepositions. These are the Spanish prepositions of location:

  • Bajo (“under” )
  • De (“from” )
  • Delante de (“in front of” )
  • Desde (“from” )
  • Detrás de (“behind” )
  • En (“in”/”at”/”on” )
  • Encima de (“on top of” )
  • Enfrente de (“in front of” )
  • Entre (“between” )
  • Hacia (“toward” )
  • Hasta (“until” )
  • Sobre (“on” )
  • Tras (“behind” )

2- Prepositions of Relation

This second group of prepositions isn’t as crowded as the last one, but the words still have very varied meanings:

  • Con (“with” )
  • Contra (“against” )
  • De (“of”/possessive “’s” )
  • Entre (“among” )
  • Para (“for” )
  • Por (“for” or “by” )
  • Según (“according to” )
  • Sin (“without” )
  • Sobre (“about” )
  • Versus (“versus” )
  • Vía (“through” )

3- Prepositions of Time

The third group of prepositions, the ones that refer to time, is another very important one:

  • A (“at” )
  • Desde (“since” )
  • Durante (“during” )
  • Entre (“between” )
  • Hacia (“around” )
  • Hasta (“until” )
  • Tras (“after” )

4- Other Prepositions

This last group is only formed, in our opinion, by the next two prepositions. It’s true we could have made them fit into the other groups, but we didn’t think they were completely appropriate there.

For example, one of the meanings of the preposition a is “motion,” which is related to location, but isn’t quite the same. The other meaning of a that’s included here (as well as the preposition para) could have been included in the group of prepositions of relation, but once again, we decided they were a bit different.

  • A (“to” or “for” )
  • Para (“to” )

4. Change of Forms

Something else you should know is that there are a couple of prepositions that, when followed by a definite article, join the article and become only one word. These are de + el (del) and a + el (al). Contracting these words isn’t optional, so you must remember them!

Here are a couple of examples:

  • Este es el coche del padre de María. → “This is María’s father’s car.”
  • Mamá, ¡me voy al lago! → “Mom, I’m going to the lake!”

In some regions of Spain, it’s also common to pronounce para + el together, as in pal. However, this contraction is very informal, so we don’t suggest you use it unless you’re talking to your close friends, or to people from one of these regions.

5. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn More Spanish

Alright, we know prepositions aren’t the funnest thing to learn in a language, but we’re actually quite sure that Spanish prepositions are way easier than English ones.

However, if you thought this wasn’t enough, or if you still need some Spanish prepositions help, there’s much more you can learn at SpanishPod101.com! You’ll find articles of all sorts on our blog, from basic articles such as the classic How to Say “Hello” in Spanish to vocabulary on the Tomatina festivities! You don’t know what they are? Make sure you check out our article! And stay tuned for more articles in the future, designed to help you master the Spanish language with ease.

Before you go, let us know in the comments how you feel about Spanish prepositions now, and if there’s anything you’re still uncertain about. We look forward to hearing from you!

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Life Event Messages: Learn Happy Birthday in Spanish & More

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We love sharing life event messages on our social media and through instant messages, right? Life events are very significant moments, and many of them are like rituals to us. Take birthdays, weddings, and funerals for example.

If you’re learning Spanish and want to say happy birthday in Spanish to your loved ones, or perhaps share your best wishes for the holidays in Spanish with your friends, it’s important to know what to say, when to say it, and how to say it.

These types of Spanish greetings and well-wishes for important occasions are normally language-specific words which shouldn’t be literally translated. So when you’re trying to say Merry Christmas in Spanish and Happy New Year in Spanish, instead of translating them, you should learn the proper way to do so. This will ensure that you say the right thing at the right time, and avoid confusion.

Let’s learn the best Spanish congratulations and best wishes for any life event, and how to use them.

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Table of Contents

  1. How Do You Say Happy Birthday in Spanish?
  2. Best Wishes & Greetings in Spanish for the Holidays
  3. Spanish Congratulations: Weddings & Engagements
  4. Spanish Congratulations: Pregnancy, Baby Shower, and New Baby
  5. Congratulations in Spanish for Graduations
  6. Spanish Congratulations Phrases for Promotions & New Jobs
  7. Spanish Congratulations Messages for Retirement
  8. Condolences in Spanish: Death & Funerals
  9. What to Say About Bad News
  10. What to Say When Someone’s Injured or Sick
  11. Conclusion

1. How Do You Say Happy Birthday in Spanish?

Happy Birthday

We all want to celebrate, congratulate, and be congratulated on our special day. Celebrations are a big part of any Spanish-speaking country. We celebrate everything, yes everything! That’s why we have so many bank holidays, even for saint days.

Send the perfect message on your friend’s birthday and make them feel special!

Celebrating Birthday

Feliz cumpleaños, which means Happy Birthday in Spanish, is the most common way to congratulate them right and simple. In Spain, we give two kisses (one on each cheek) or a hug, but in some Latin American countries, one kiss is enough.

If you don’t get to see them, text them! A quick message on their social media will make their day. Let’s answer the question “How do you say Happy Birthday in Spanish?” with some examples you can use:

  • ¡Que todos tus deseos se hagan realidad!
    “May all your wishes come true!”
  • ¡Felicidades!
    “Congratulations!”
  • ¡Que cumplas muchos años más!
    “I hope you enjoy many more years!”
  • ¡Que tengas un maravilloso día!
    “Have a wonderful day!”
  • ¡Mis mejores deseos en este día tan especial para ti!
    “I wish you all the best on your special day!”
  • ¡Enhorabuena!
    “Congratulations!”

And there are some special phrases, such as:

  • Si es tu cumpleaños, ¿por qué el regalo lo tengo yo? Gracias por regalarme otro año de vida a tu lado.
    “If it is your birthday, why do I have your present? Thanks for giving me another year next to you.”
  • Que el nuevo año que empiezas esté tan lleno de alegría y felicidad como te deseo. ¡Que cumplas muchos más!
    “I hope this new year can be as full of joy and happiness as I wish you. I hope you have much more!”

2. Best Wishes & Greetings in Spanish for the Holidays

Basic Questions

The holiday season is the most exciting time for Spanish people. Why? Because it’s when we all get to share quality time with our families. Although there may be many ways to say Merry Christmas in English, there’s one phrase in Spanish that encapsulates the meaning.

¡Felices fiestas! literally means “Happy holidays” in Spanish, and is the most common way to give best wishes for the holidays in Spanish.

Receiving A Christmas Card

As you may know by now, Spanish-speaking countries are all about parties, which explains the phrase Felices Fiestas.

Feliz Navidad is another way to say “Merry Christmas,” and may be the best translation of it.

You should reply: Igualmente, which means “You too.”

If you want to add more love and affection to your Merry Christmas in Spanish, you should say con mucho cariño, meaning “with all my love.”

New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day are also part of the holiday season in Spain. Although “happy holidays” in Spanish is Felices Fiestas, Happy New Year in Spanish is expressed in many different ways.

  • ¡Feliz año nuevo!
    “Happy New Year!”
  • ¡Feliz año!
    “Happy year!”

New Year's Eve Party

You can send your best wishes for the holidays in Spanish for the new year by saying something like: Que tengas un próspero año nuevo, or “I hope you have a prosperous new year.”

This message is the best choice if you want to wish a Happy New Year in Spanish on a Christmas card, send a text message, or email it to someone special.

  • Feliz próspero año nuevo.
    “Happy prosperous new year.”
  • Que el próximo año esté lleno de bendiciones.
    “May next year be full of blessings.”
  • Año nuevo, vida nueva.
    “New year, new life.”

Other important days in Spanish-speaking countries are Mother’s Day and Father’s Day. We all want to tell our parents how important they are and how much they mean to us, making it important to know how to wish them a happy Mother’s Day in Spanish (or Father’s Day).

If you have a Spanish partner, it’s possible that you have a mother-in-law or father-in-law who cares about you a lot. This is the perfect chance to show them your love and wish them a Happy Mother’s Day in Spanish.

Kissing Mother in Mother's Day

  • ¡Feliz día de la madre!
    “Happy Mother’s Day!”
  • ¡Feliz día del padre!
    “Happy Father’s Day”
  • Gracias por todo lo que has hecho.
    “Thanks for all you’ve done for me.”
  • Estoy agradecido/agradecida por todo tu trabajo.
    “I’m thankful for all your work.”
  • Eres la mejor mamá del mundo.
    “You’re the best mom in the world.”
  • Eres el mejor padre del mundo.
    “You’re the best dad in the world.”
  • Mamá, te amo or Te quiero mamá.
    “I love you, mom.”

These are some messages you can send to wish a Happy Mother’s Day in Spanish on their social media, in a postcard, or in person.

3. Spanish Congratulations: Weddings & Engagements

Marriage Proposal

A wedding is a special day that most people want to share with their family and friends with a big party. Perhaps this year you’re lucky enough to be invited to one in a Spanish-speaking country!

Perfect! Learn how to express all your best wishes in Spanish here.

What do you write in a Spanish wedding card? How can you express your happiness for the couple? Whether you want to congratulate the married couple, have received an invitation to a wedding, want to add a message to your gift card, or just want to leave your best wishes in Spanish on their wedding book, these are useful phrases you can use.

If you’re lucky, you may get to give a public speech on this special day. Surprise your audience with your Spanish skills. Here’s how:

  • Espero que seáis muy felices.
    “I wish you both happiness.”
  • ¡Felicidades por esta nueva etapa!
    “Congratulations on your new life together!”
  • ¡Felicidades a los futuros esposos!
    “Congratulations to the future spouses!”
  • ¡Felicidades a los novios!
    “Congratulations to the bride and the groom!”

Celebrating Newlyweds

If the couple has been married for a very long time and you want to congratulate them for all the time they‘ve been together, this is how:

  • ¡Felicidades por sus bodas de plata!
    “Congratulations on your silver wedding anniversary.”
  • Felicidades por sus bodas de oro.
    “Congratulations on your golden wedding anniversary.”
  • Felicidades por sus bodas de diamante.
    “Congratulations on your diamond wedding anniversary.”

4. Spanish Congratulations: Pregnancy, Baby Shower, and New Baby

New life! A new member of the family has arrived, and you want to take the time to congratulate the new parents. Here are some Spanish greetings and well-wishes for important occasions like these.

Newborn in Mother's Arms

  • ¡Felicidades por el nuevo integrante de la familia!
    “Congratulations on the new arrival in your family.”
  • ¡Felicidades por el nacimiento de su niño/niña!
    “Congratulations on the arrival of your boy/girl.”
  • Nos alegra mucho saber que ya ha nacido.
    “We are so happy to hear he/she has already been born.”
  • Enhorabuena.
    “Congratulations.”

5. Congratulations in Spanish for Graduations

Hats in Graduation Day

We all want to share with others what we accomplish in life. Tell the new graduates how happy you are for their academic accomplishment in Spanish. And why not surprise them with your Spanish skills while you’re at it!

  • ¡Felicidades por tu graduación!
    “Congratulations on your graduation.”
  • ¡Buen trabajo!
    “Well done.” or “Good job.”
  • ¡Felicidades por tus buenas calificaciones!
    “Congratulations on your good grades.”
  • ¡Felicidades por tu master!
    “Congratulations on getting your Master’s degree.”
  • ¡Felicidades por entrar en la universidad!
    “Well done on getting into the university.”
  • ¡Felicidades por pasar el examen!
    “Congratulations on passing your exam.”

6. Spanish Congratulations Phrases for Promotions & New Jobs

Two Men Shaking Hands

Did someone just share their success? A new job, moving to a new country, or something else? Celebrate with them by saying something in Spanish. Here’s how:

  • ¡Felicidades! or Enhorabuena.
    “Congratulations.”
  • ¡Bien hecho!
    “Well done!”
  • Sabíamos que lo lograrías.
    “We knew you would get it.”
  • Estamos orgullosos de ti.
    “We are so proud of you.”
  • ¡Felicidades por tu nuevo empleo!
    “Congratulations on your new job!”
  • ¡Felicidades por tu ascenso!
    “Congratulations on the promotion!”
  • ¡Mucha suerte en tu nueva etapa!
    “Best of luck on your next step.”
  • ¡Suerte en tu primer día de trabajo!
    “Good luck on your first day of work!”

7. Spanish Congratulations Messages for Retirement

Age

Now the fun begins: Your father-in-law or mother-in-law has retired, and you want to share your best wishes in Spanish. They may come to your place more often now, so keep your Spanish skills sharp with these Spanish greetings and well-wishes for important occasions such as this one.

  • Enhorabuena, ahora empieza la diversión.
    “Congratulations, now the fun begins.”
  • Mis mejores deseos en la nueva etapa de tu vida.
    “Best wishes on your new chapter in life.”
  • Deseándote a ti y a tu familia lo mejor en la nueva etapa de vida. Que disfrutes del tiempo extra que pasarás con ellos.
    “Wishing you and your family the best on your new chapter in your life. I hope you enjoy spending more time with them.”

8. Condolences in Spanish: Death & Funerals

We all want to express our sympathy when someone has lost a loved one. Sometimes it’s hard to express, especially if it’s not in your native language.

Funeral Talk in Cementery

Here are some Spanish phrases of condolences to help you:

  • Lo siento mucho.
    “I am sorry to hear that.”
  • Estamos con ustedes.
    “We are with you.”
  • Mis condolencias para la familia.
    “I offer my condolences to your family.”
  • Mi más sentido pésame.
    “My deepest condolences.”
  • Que descanse en paz or Descanse en paz.
    “Rest in peace.”

9. What to Say About Bad News

What should you say when you receive bad news? We all have difficult moments in life, and words may not always bring a solution. But when we share them with meaning and from the heart, they can go a long ways toward comforting someone.

Receiving Bad News by the Phone

Here are some phrases that you can use to express your feelings in Spanish when someone is having a bad day!

  • Lo siento mucho.
    “I’m sorry to hear that.”
  • Estoy contigo.
    “I’m here for you.”
  • Te envío un beso y un abrazo.
    “Sending you all my love.”
  • Cuenta conmigo.
    “You can lean on me.”
  • Cuidate mucho.
    “Take care of yourself.”

10. What to Say When Someone’s Injured or Sick

What if you have a Spanish-speaking friend or colleague who’s sick, and you want to cheer them up?

Sick with Fever

Wish them a quick recovery, and ask them to get well soon in Spanish:

  • Recupérate pronto.
    “Wishing you a speedy recovery.”
  • ¡Que te mejores!
    “Get well!”
  • Alíviate pronto.
    “I hope you get well soon.”
  • Espero que te sientas mejor.
    “I hope you feel better soon.”

11. Conclusion

Apart from receiving compliments for those significant life events, we should all learn how to thank them for their kind words in Spanish. We can help you learn more Spanish at SpanishPod101.

  • Gracias.
    “Thank you.”
  • Se agradece.
    “It’s appreciated.”
  • Mil gracias.
    “Many thanks.”
  • No sé cómo podría agradecértelo.
    “I don’t know how to thank you.”
  • Estamos muy agradecidos.
    “We are very grateful.”
  • Qué amable de su parte.
    “Very kind of you.”
  • Gracias desde el fondo de mi corazón.
    “Thanks from the bottom of my heart.”

“How do you say happy birthday in Spanish?” Well, with this simple list, now you know! Learn more about life event messages in Spanish and much more at SpanishPod101.

Before you go, let us know in the comments if there are any Spanish life events and life event messages you want to know about! We look forward to hearing from you, and will help out the best we can!

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Spanish Adjectives Guide & Top 100 Spanish Adjectives List

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Is it possible to speak a language without using any adjectives? Well, it is, but if you did, you would lose so much meaning. It would be like eating a flavorless meal; sure, you ingest food and all of its nutrients, but do you actually enjoy it? Not much, surely. Adjectives might not be essential for all kinds of communication, but they’re still very important and bring more meaning to your words.

In this article, you’ll find 100 of the most-used Spanish adjectives, as well as how to use them. Rest assured this will help you spice up your Spanish!

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Table of Contents

  1. How Do Spanish Adjectives Work?
  2. Common Spanish Adjectives for Dimensions, Sizes, Distance, etc.
  3. Essential Spanish Adjectives for Describing Value
  4. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Feeling & Sense
  5. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Personalities and Behaviors
  6. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Speed, Difficulty, Importance, etc.
  7. Describing Colors in Spanish
  8. Describing Weather
  9. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Taste
  10. Best Spanish Adjectives for Describing Situations
  11. Describing Physical Traits or Physical Condition
  12. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Appearance & Condition
  13. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn More Spanish

1. How Do Spanish Adjectives Work?

Before we continue on with our top 100 list, it’s prudent that we go over the basic Spanish adjectives rules. Understanding Spanish adjectives is far more important than knowing them only by rote!

Spanish Adjectives Placement

In Spanish, we generally find adjectives after a noun, the opposite of where you find them in English. For example, un coche verde means “a green car,” but if we translated it literally, it would be “a car green,” which sounds really weird in English.

However, there are exceptions, for various reasons. For example, it’s common in literature to find the adjective before the noun, and you can also do this yourself when you want to emphasize the noun: una bonita flor is “a beautiful flower.”

Another common way of using an adjective works the same way as in English, and that is when it follows this structure: noun + “to be” verb + adjective. For example: El coche es verde means “The car is green.” Nevertheless, as you might already know, Spanish has two different verbs that can translate to the English verb “to be,” which are ser and estar. A true nightmare for a Spanish learner, as some might say.

We’re going to make it simple here, though. If the adjective you’re using is something perceived as permanent, use the verb ser. If it’s something temporary, use the verb estar.

Let’s see some examples:

When you tell a girl she’s pretty, you’re not thinking of it as a temporary state, but as a permanent thing. This means you’ll tell her something like Eres muy guapa, or “You’re very pretty.”

Man Talking to Woman through an Open Window

However, if what you want to tell her is that she looks good in that moment, perhaps because she’s wearing a nice dress, you might say: ¡Qué guapa estás!, which would translate to “You look so pretty!” Of course, there are exceptions, but don’t worry about that for now. We’ll see them shortly.

Spanish Adjectives Agreement

There’s something else you need to keep in mind: While adjectives in English only have one form and never change, in Spanish, they can change in a few ways. The most important variation is related to the fact that nouns can be either feminine or masculine. Because an adjective accompanies a noun, it also has a gender, and most of the important Spanish adjectives change a little bit according to its gender.

As you’ll see in the examples below, all the adjectives that end in -o in their masculine form, will end in -a in their feminine form. However, there are many that end in -e (and a few others that end in different letters) that have the same form whether they’re masculine or feminine. In this Spanish adjectives review, we’ve marked all the adjectives that do change, but you can also check this brief article on Invariable Adjectives in Spanish.

Spanish adjectives can also be singular or plural, depending on the noun they accompany, so one adjective might have up to four different forms. For example, guapo, or “handsome,” has the following forms: guapo, guapa, guapos, guapas.

There’s another variation that most adjectives can have, and this is something that doesn’t exist in English, or at least not in the same way. When you want to emphasize an adjective, instead of saying muy (“very” ) in front of it, you can add -ísimo or -ísima at the end. If you see a very tall building, you can say it’s altísimo, instead of just alto, or muy alto. If you’re very very happy, you might want to say that you’re contentísimo, instead of contento.

Now that you’ve refreshed your knowledge, it’s time for our Spanish adjectives list! But if you do still need some Spanish adjectives help, why not give our MyTeacher program a try or drop us a comment below?

2. Common Spanish Adjectives for Dimensions, Sizes, Distance, etc.

Adjectives

Let’s start with some basic adjectives, such as those to describe sizes, among others.

1- grande

Meaning: “big”
Example: Esta camiseta me va grande.
Translation: “This shirt is too big for me.”
Note: This adjective also has the form gran, which is only found in front of the noun and changes its meaning to “great.” It’s not the same to say una mujer grande (“a big woman” ) as it is to say una gran mujer (“a great woman” ). There are also some nouns that can only have this adjective in front of it. For example, “a great idea” is una gran idea.

2- pequeño

Meaning: “small”
Example: Mi hermana tiene los pies pequeños.
Translation: “My sister has small feet.”

3- ancho/a

Meaning: “wide”
Example: Es una habitación muy ancha.
Translation: “It’s quite a wide room.”

4- estrecho/a

Meaning: “narrow”
Example: Hemos pasado por una calle muy estrecha.
Translation: “We passed through a very narrow street.”

Narrow Passage

5- alto/a

Meaning: “tall”
Example: ¡Qué alto eres!
Translation: “You’re so tall!”

6- bajo/a

Meaning: “short”
Example: El techo es muy bajo.
Translation: “The ceiling is very low.”

7- pesado/a

Meaning: “heavy”
Example: Esta caja es demasiado pesada para mí.
Translation: “This box is too heavy for me.”

8- ligero/a

Meaning: “light”
Example: Coge este libro, es más ligero de lo que parece.
Translation: “Grab this book, it’s lighter than it looks.”

9- lejano/a

Meaning: “far”
Example: Ese bar es muy lejano. ¿Podemos ir a otro?
Translation: “That bar is too far. Can we go to a different one?”

10- cercano/a

Meaning: “close”
Example: Nací en un pueblo cercano.
Translation: “I was born in a close town.”

11- lleno/a

Meaning: “full”
Example: El vaso está lleno.
Translation: “The glass is full.”

12- vacío/a/

Meaning: “empty”
Example: Tengo el monedero vacío.
Translation: “My wallet is empty.”

Empty Wallet

3. Essential Spanish Adjectives for Describing Value

We tend to say that things are good or bad, but sometimes they might be better or worse. They could be amazing, they could be wonderful, or they could be awful… Let’s learn some of these adjectives!

13- bueno/a

Meaning: “good”
Example: Mi primo es una buena persona.
Translation:My cousin is a good person.”

14- genial

Meaning: “great”
Example: ¡Eres genial!
Translation: “You’re great!”

15- maravilloso/a

Meaning: “wonderful”
Example: Tu abuela es maravillosa.
Translation: “Your grandmother is wonderful.”

16- increíble

Meaning: “incredible”
Example: Me ha regalado un videojuego increíble.
Translation: “He gave me an incredible video game.”

17- malo/a

Meaning: “bad”
Example: Esta película es muy mala.
Translation: “This movie is really bad.”

18- malísimo/a

Meaning: “awful”
Example: Ese actor es malísimo.
Translation: “That’s an awful actor.”
Note: Okay, we realize that here we only added the -ísimo ending to malo, but it’s just to show you that there’s nothing worse than this. However, when something really sucks, we don’t use an adjective; we say it’s una mierda, which means “a sh*t.” We might also add some swear words to that, but this isn’t the right time for that.

4. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Feeling & Sense

You might also want to know how to describe how it feels to touch something. Whether it’s smooth or rough, hot or cold… These adjectives always come in handy.

19- frío/a

Meaning: “cold”
Example: La sopa se ha quedado fría.
Translation: “The soup went cold.”

20- helado/a

Meaning: “ice cold”
Example: Siempre se me quedan las manos heladas.
Translation: “My hands always get ice cold.”
Note: helado also means “ice cream.”

Little Girl Eating Ice Cream

21- caliente

Meaning: “hot”
Example: Cuidado, el café está muy caliente.
Translation: “Be careful, the coffee is really hot.”

22- ardiente

Meaning: “burning”
Example: No toques eso, está ardiente.
Translation: “Don’t touch that, it’s burning hot.”

23- suave

Meaning: “smooth”
Example: Siempre he tenido la piel suave.
Translation: “I’ve always had smooth skin.”

24- áspero

Meaning: “rough”
Example: Tienes las manos ásperas.
Translation: “Your hands are rough.”

25- rugoso

Meaning: “rugged”
Example: Esta pared es muy rugosa.
Translation: “This wall is very rugged.”

26- blando

Meaning: “soft”
Example: Esta almohada es muy blanda.
Translation: “This pillow is very soft.”

27- duro

Meaning: “hard”
Example: Esta tarta no se puede comer, está durísima.
Translation: “I can’t eat this cake, it’s really hard.”

5. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Personalities and Behaviors

Improve Pronunciation

We couldn’t write an article about adjectives without talking about how to describe someone’s personality. In this section, we’ve decided it would be a good idea to classify these words between positive and negative words. Some of these words aren’t that easy to classify, so we realize that not all of these words are entirely negative, but we hope that’s okay with you! Here are the top Spanish adjectives for personality.

Positive words

28- agradable

Meaning: “nice” and “friendly”
Example: He pasado una tarde muy agradable.
Translation: “I’ve had a very nice afternoon.”

29- amable

Meaning: “kind”
Example: Gracias, eres muy amable.
Translation: “Thank you, you’re very kind.”

30- contento/a

Meaning: “happy”
Example: Hoy estoy muy contento.
Translation: “I’m really happy today.”

31- educado/a

Meaning: “polite”
Example: Tu hijo es muy educado.
Translation: “Your son is very polite.”

32- extrovertido/a

Meaning: “extroverted”
Example: No soy demasiado extrovertida.
Translation: “I’m not too extroverted.”

33- feliz

Meaning: “happy”
Example: Nadie me hace tan feliz como mi gato.
Translation: “Nobody makes me as happy as my cat.”

Happy Kid

34- gracioso/a

Meaning: “funny” (but it can also be used ironically)
Example: ¿Te crees gracioso?
Translation: “Do you think you’re funny?”

35- listo/a

Meaning: “smart”
Example: Tengo alumnos muy listos.
Translation: “I have very smart students.”

36- sincero/a

Meaning: “sincere”
Example: Gracias por ser sincero.
Translation: “Thank you for being sincere.”

37- valiente

Meaning: “brave”
Example: Tienes que ser valiente.
Translation: “You need to be brave.”

Check out our Top 20 Spanish Words for Positive Emotions!

Negative words

38- cansado/a

Meaning: “tired”
Example: Mi madre siempre está cansada.
Translation: “My mom is always tired.”

39- enfadado/a

Meaning: “angry”
Example: Sé que estás enfadado, pero escúchame.
Translation: “I know you’re angry, but listen to me.”

40- ingenuo/a

Meaning: “naïve”
Example: Mira que eres ingenua.
Translation: “You’re so naïve.”

41- loco/a

Meaning: “crazy”
Example: ¡Estás loco!
Translation: “You’re crazy!”

42- maleducado/a

Meaning: “rude”
Example: De pequeña era bastante maleducada.
Translation: “When I was little I was quite rude.”

43- malvado/a

Meaning: “evil”
Example: He soñado con una bruja malvada.
Translation: “I dreamed of an evil witch.”

44- serio/a

Meaning: “serious”
Example: Mi hermano es un chico serio.
Translation: “My brother is a serious boy.”

45- solitario/a

Meaning: “lonely”
Example: Siempre he sido algo solitario.
Translation: “I’ve always been somewhat lonely.”

46- tímido/a

Meaning: “shy”
Example: Mi amiga es un poco tímida.
Translation: “My friend is a little shy.”

47- torpe

Meaning: “clumsy”
Example: Es verdad que soy un poco torpe.
Translation: “It’s true that I’m a little clumsy.”

48- triste

Meaning: “sad”
Example: Me pone triste verte así.
Translation: “Seeing you like this makes me sad.”

49- vago/a

Meaning: “lazy”
Example: Hoy tengo un día vago.
Translation: “I’m having a lazy day today.”

Lazy Man Taking a Nap

For a few more words to describe personality, you can check out our list of Spanish adjectives.

6. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Speed, Difficulty, Importance, etc.

50- rápido/a

Meaning: “fast”
Example: Eres demasiado rápido para mí.
Translation: “You’re too fast for me.”

51- lento/a

Meaning: “slow”
Example: Qué lento es este coche.
Translation: “This car is so slow.”

52- fácil

Meaning: “easy”
Example: El examen me ha parecido fácil.
Translation: “I found the test easy.”

53- difícil

Meaning: “difficult”
Example: Es una pregunta difícil.
Translation: “That’s a difficult question.”

54- importante

Meaning: “important”
Example: Sé que este collar es importante para ti.
Translation: “I know this necklace is important to you.”

55- simple

Meaning: “simple”
Example: No es tan simple.
Translation: “It’s not so simple.”

56- complicado

Meaning: “complicated”
Example: Me gustaría que la vida no fuese tan complicada.
Translation: “I wish life wasn’t so complicated.”

7. Describing Colors in Spanish

No list of adjectives would be complete without a list of colors. Here we have selected some of the most basic Spanish colors as adjectives:

57- amarillo/a

Meaning: “yellow”
Example: Tengo un coche amarillo.
Translation: “I have a yellow car.”

58- azul

Meaning: “blue”
Example: Mi lámpara es azul.
Translation: “My lamp is blue.”

59- blanco/a

Meaning: “white”
Example: Me he comprado un vestido blanco.
Translation: “I bought a white dress.”

Girl Trying on a Dress

60- marrón

Meaning: “brown”
Example: No me había fijado en que tenías los ojos marrones.
Translation: “I didn’t notice you had brown eyes.”

61- negro/a

Meaning: “black”
Example: Mi primer perro era de color negro.
Translation: “My first dog was black.”

62- rojo/a

Meaning: “red”
Example: ¿Te gusta mi nuevo pintalabios rojo?
Translation: “Do you like my new red lipstick?”

63- verde

Meaning: “green”
Example: Me encantan los árboles, son tan verdes.
Translation: “I love trees, they’re so green.”

64- claro/a

Meaning: “light”
Example: Tengo la piel muy clara.
Translation: “I have really light skin.”

65- oscuro/a

Meaning: “dark”
Example: ¿Puedes encender la luz? Está muy oscuro.
Translation: “Can you turn on the lights? It’s really dark.”

8. Describing Weather

In general, there aren’t very many Spanish weather adjectives. As we saw before, we do say something is hot or cold, but not when we’re talking about us feeling hot. Instead, what we say is Tengo calor (literally, “I have heat” ) or Tengo frío (“I have cold” ). If you said Estoy caliente (“I’m hot” ) you would actually be saying that you’re horny, so that could be quite confusing to the person you’re talking to.

On a similar note, when you want to say that the weather is hot, you won’t use an adjective. You’ll have to say Hace calor, which literally translates to something like “It makes heat,” and you’ll say Hace frío when it’s cold.

Even if it’s not that common, we do use some adjectives. For example, if it’s a cloudy day, we can say Está nublado.

For more weather words in Spanish, check out our Spanish weather article.

9. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Taste

We now know how to describe the feeling of touching something, so now it’s time to see how to describe taste. When you eat Spanish food, we’re sure you’ll want to tell your host how delicious you think it is!

Cookies

66- dulce

Meaning: “sweet”
Example: Estas galletas son muy dulces.
Translation: “These cookies are very sweet.”

67- salado/a

Meaning: “salty”
Example: La tortilla está demasiado salada.
Translation: “The omelette is too salty.”

68- agrio/a

Meaning: “sour”
Example: Creo que la leche tiene un sabor agrio.
Translation: “I think this milk has a sour flavor.”

69- picante

Meaning: “spicy”
Example: ¿Este plato es picante?
Translation: “Is this dish spicy?”

70- asqueroso/a

Meaning: “disgusting”
Example: Esta fruta tiene un sabor asqueroso.
Translation: “This fruit has a disgusting taste.”

71- delicioso/a

Meaning: “delicious”
Example: Las fresas son deliciosas.
Translation: “Strawberries are delicious.”

72- amargo/a

Meaning: “bitter”
Example: El café es demasiado amargo para mí.
Translation: “Coffee is too bitter for me.”

To explore taste while you’re traveling in Spain, here’s a list of the 20 best restaurants in Spain.

10. Best Spanish Adjectives for Describing Situations

Reading

73- peligroso/a

Meaning: “dangerous”
Example: ¡No vayas! ¡Es peligroso!
Translation: “Don’t go! It’s dangerous!”

74- seguro/a

Meaning: “safe”
Example: Esta casa es completamente segura.
Translation: “This house is completely safe.”

75- divertido/a

Meaning: “fun” or “funny”
Example: Esta película es tan divertida.
Translation: “This movie is so funny.”

76- aburrido/a

Meaning: “boring”
Example: Esta clase es aburridísima.
Translation: “This lesson is so boring.”

Bored Kid

77- imposible

Meaning: “impossible”
Example: Este examen es imposible.
Translation: “This exam is impossible.”

78- posible

Meaning: “possible”
Example: Esa chica es una posible asesina.
Translation: “That girl is a possible killer.”

11. Describing Physical Traits or Physical Condition

79- viejo/a

Meaning: “old”
Example: Es solo un reloj viejo.
Translation: “It’s just an old watch.”

80- joven

Meaning: “young”
Example: Eres demasiado joven para entenderlo.
Translation: “You’re too young to understand it.”
Note: Even though being young isn’t permanent and it’s only temporary, we wouldn’t use the verb estar here: we use ser.

81- fuerte

Meaning: “strong”
Example: Tienes los brazos muy fuertes.
Translation: “You have really strong arms.”

82- débil

Meaning: “weak”
Example: Juan no es tan débil como parece.
Translation: “Juan isn’t as weak as he looks.”

83- enfermo/a

Meaning: “sick”
Example: Mi abuelo está enfermo.
Translation: “My grandfather is sick.”

84- nuevo/a

Meaning: “new”
Example: Me he comprado un anillo nuevo.
Translation: “I bought myself a new ring.”

12. Spanish Adjectives for Describing Appearance & Condition

And finally, another very common group of adjectives. These are the top Spanish adjectives to describe people’s appearance.

85- atractivo/a

Meaning: “attractive”
Example: Mi madre de joven era muy atractiva.
Translation: “When my mom was young, she was very attractive.”

86- bonito/a

Meaning: “beautiful”
Example: Me parece un cuadro muy bonito.
Translation: “I think it’s a very beautiful painting.”
Note: We can say a girl is bonita, or a thing, or a landscape, but we don’t use it to describe a boy. If we want to say a boy is good-looking, we’ll use the following adjective, guapo.

87- guapo/a

Meaning: “handsome” or “pretty”
Example: Mi novio es guapísimo.
Translation: “My boyfriend is so handsome.”

88- feo/a

Meaning: “ugly”
Example: Qué paisaje tan feo.
Translation: “It’s such an ugly landscape.”

89- calvo/a

Meaning: “bald”
Example: Mi padre ha sido calvo desde que nací.
Translation: “My father has been bald since I was born.”

90- peludo/a

Meaning: “hairy”
Example: No me gusta tener las piernas tan peludas.
Translation: “I don’t like having such hairy legs.”

91- rubio/a

Meaning: “blond”
Example: De pequeña tenía el pelo rubio.
Translation: “When I was little, I had blond hair.”

92- moreno/a

Meaning: “tanned” or “brown-haired”
Example: ¿Has visto qué morena me he puesto?
Translation: “Did you see how tan I got?”

93- pelirrojo/a

Meaning: “red-haired”
Example: Me gustan mucho las chicas pelirrojas.
Translation: “I really like red-haired girls.”

Red-Haired Girl

94- delgado/a

Meaning: “thin”
Example: Te has puesto muy delgada, ¿no?
Translation: “You got really thin, didn’t you?”

95- gordo/a

Meaning: “fat”
Example: Marta está un poco gorda.
Translation: “Marta is a little fat.”

96- obeso/a

Meaning: “obese”
Example: Si no te pones a dieta ahora, te vas a poner obesa.
Translation: “If you don’t go on a diet now, you’re going to become obese.”

97- mono/a

Meaning: “cute”
Example: Qué mona eres.
Translation: “You’re so cute.”

98- pobre

Meaning: “poor”
Example: Soy pobre, pero tengo orgullo.
Translation: “I’m poor, but I have pride.”

99- rico/a

Meaning: “rich”
Example: A veces pienso que me tendría que buscar un novio rico.
Translation: “Sometimes I think I should get a rich boyfriend.”

100- tatuado/a

Meaning: “tattooed”
Example: Mi hermano está todo tatuado.
Translation: “My brother is all tattooed.”

13. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn More Spanish

Do you feel more confident now using Spanish adjectives? Are there any Spanish adjectives you still want to know? Let us know in the comments! We always enjoy hearing from you!

We’re sure that these 100 Spanish adjectives will help you improve your level of conversation in Spanish. But let’s not stop there! There’s so much more to learn, so many new words to explore, so many friends to make! At SpanishPod101.com, you can learn so much more and really become fluent in Spanish.

You might want to take a look at our very useful vocabulary list of Spanish Adverbs and Phrases for Connecting Thoughts, or now that we’ve looked at Spanish adjectives, it might be good to check out these 25 Most Commonly Used Verbs.

If you’re here, you might be interested in moving to Spain. Why not read our article on How to Find Jobs in Spain?

Until next time, happy learning!

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Spanish Conjunctions Guide: Link Your Thoughts Together

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Conjunctions in Spanish are a crucial part of learning Spanish. They allow you to connect your thoughts, make comparisons, and put sentences together.

Clarity is very important when you’re learning a new language. Not only because the other person will understand what you’re saying, but also because it will build your confidence.

Do you remember when you first decided to learn Spanish? You may still remember how frustrating it was to try having a fluid conversation with a native speaker. You were trying to find the small words to express yourself properly.

We all find ourselves saying: “I have a brother. I have a sister. I have a mother. I do not have a father.”

Well, this is what Spanish conjunctions will do for you. Learning Spanish conjunctions will help you string sentences together: “I have a brother and a sister and a mother, but I do not have a father.”

In this article, you’ll find our Spanish conjunctions list that will show you what small Spanish conjunction words can do for you.

Your thoughts will come out nicely, you’ll be easily understood, and your confidence will increase much faster since you’ll sound like, at the least, an upper-intermediate Spanish learner.

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Table of Contents

  1. Spanish Conjunctions Review: What are Spanish Conjunctions?
  2. Spanish Conjunctions to Correlate Similar Thoughts
  3. Spanish Conjunctions to Express Condition
  4. Spanish Conjunctions to Express Cause
  5. Spanish Conjunctions to Express Opposition
  6. Spanish Adverbial Conjunctions
  7. Spanish Conjunctions that Offer Alternatives
  8. Spanish Subordinating Conjunctions
  9. Spanish Conjunctions that Allow You to Give Reasons
  10. Spanish Subjunctive Conjunctions
  11. Conclusion

1. Spanish Conjunctions Review: What are Spanish Conjunctions?

The first thing we do when trying to learn a new language is to put simple sentences together: “I want a coffee.” Now, it’s time for you to learn how to put these simple sentences together: “I want a coffee and a muffin,” or “I like muffins, but I prefer a cookie.” That’s what Spanish conjunctions are, and how they can help you.

Coffee and Pastries

A conjunction in Spanish is a word that helps you create relationships between words, phrases, clauses, and sentences.

Keep in mind that some conjunctions in Spanish may not have meaning by themselves. They have a different meaning in different contexts, which is why it’s important to know what their functions are and how to use them. Throughout this article, we’ll go over some Spanish conjunctions rules to give you a better idea about their use.

So let’s see some of them in our Spanish conjunctions list!

2. Spanish Conjunctions to Correlate Similar Thoughts

This is the most important—and easy—conjunction in Spanish: y, meaning “and.” It allows you to add more than one sentence together.

We actually overdo this Spanish conjunction quite often. Take a look at what we mean:

  • Me gusta la comida española y la italiana y la francesa y la griega.
    “I like Spanish food and Italian food and French food and Greek food.”

Selection of Different Type of Foods

  • Santiago pidió de comer y pagó toda la cuenta.
    “Santiago ordered the food and paid the whole bill.”
  • El policía me pidió el carné, anotó mis datos y me puso una multa.
    “The police officer asked for my licence, wrote down my information, and I got a fine.”

This use of this Spanish conjunction has an exception where you have to use e instead of y. They mean exactly the same thing, but if your next word or sentence starts with the vowel –i-, you have to use e instead of y.

Why? Well, –i– and –y– in Spanish sound the same, so you have to use –e– to emphasize that you’re adding more information. Let’s see how:

  • María es guapa e interesante.
    “Maria is beautiful and interesting.”
  • Daniel e Isabela se acaban de conocer.
    “Daniel and Isabela just met each other.”

However, if the next word starts with –h-, although this letter has no sound in Spanish, you can use –y-.

  • He comprado agua y hielo.
    “I bought water and ice.”
  • El puente es de acero y hierro.
    “The bridge is from steel and iron.”

3. Spanish Conjunctions to Express Condition

Sentence Patterns

This is our English-Spanish conjunctions list for conjunctions that are used to express a condition. When you use these Spanish conjunctions, you’re expressing a specific condition that must be met for the rest of the sentence to be true or possible.

  • Si: “If”

Si vas a ir al supermercado, compra leche.
“If you are going to the supermarket, buy milk.”

  • En caso de que: “If”; “in case of”

This Spanish conjunction has the same meaning as the English word “if,” but in Spanish it’s used at the beginning of the sentence.

En caso de que decidas venir a la fiesta, compra más cervezas.
“If you decide to come to the party, buy more beers.”

  • Como: “If”

We included this word to our conjunctions in Spanish list because in English, you can just use “if,” but in Spanish this word has a different meaning that the phrase above. You use como if you want to warn someone about something. Let’s see how:

Como no vengas a casa temprano, no sales mañana otra vez.
“If you don’t come home early, you won’t go out again tomorrow.”

  • Siempre que: “If”; “provided”

Siempre que seas honrado todo te saldrá bien.
“Provided you are honest, everything will be fine.”

4. Spanish Conjunctions to Express Cause

Improve Listening

These should be on your Spanish conjunctions worksheets because you need them to express the results and consequences of what you’ve said or done.

  • Así que: “So”

Acabo de llegar a casa así que te llamo luego.
“I have just arrived home, so I will call you back later.”

  • Luego: “So”

This Spanish conjunction may mean the same as Así que, but it’s less common. You’ll see it more in books or literary articles than in speech.

No tengo efectivo, luego no podré comprarme un café.
“I do not have cash on me, so I can’t buy myself a coffee.”

  • De modo que: “So”; “so that”

Salgamos de casa ya, de modo que lleguemos temprano al cine.
“Let’s leave home now so we can arrive early for the movie.”

5. Spanish Conjunctions to Express Opposition

Improve Listening Part 2

This conjunction list will help you express contrast.

  • Pero: “But”

Voy a ir a tu fiesta pero primero tengo que ir a casa.
“I am going to your party, but I have to go home first.”

  • Aunque: “Although”; “even though”

Seguiré buscando trabajo aunque sea difícil
“I will carry on looking for a job, even though it’s still difficult.”

  • Sin embargo: “However”

Me gusta el helado, sin embargo prefiero el yogur cuando estoy en casa.
“I like ice cream; however, I prefer yogurt when I am home.”

  • No obstante: “However”; “nevertheless”

Nos lo pasamos bien en la primera cita, no obstante, no la volví a ver.
“We had a good time on our first date; however, I didn’t see her again.”

  • Por lo demás: “Otherwise”; “apart from that”

No creo que la conclusión esté bien; por lo demás, el ensayo está muy bien.
“I don’t think the conclusion was good; apart from the conclusion, the essay is fine.”

  • Excepto: “Except for”

Me gustan todas las verduras excepto la patatas.
“I like all vegetables except for potatoes.”

6. Spanish Adverbial Conjunctions

Spanish adverbial conjunctions are also known as conjunctive adverbs. They’re adverbs with the characteristics and functions of conjunctions. They join two or more words together, and are used when you want to express the result, purpose, or consequences of something.

Adverbial conjunctions show continuity, joined under casual or situational dependence. The most-used adverbial conjunctions in Spanish are:

  • Cuando: “When”; “if”; “as”; “whenever”

Toda la comida estaba preparada cuando tú llegaste.
“All the food was prepared when you arrived.”

  • Mientras: “While”

Puedes ir comprando palomitas mientras compro las entradas.
“You can buy the popcorn while I’m buying the tickets.”

  • Donde: “Where”

Vivo muy cerca de donde tú trabajas.
“I live pretty close to where you work.”

  • Como: “As”; “like”

Tengo el pelo rizado como tu madre.
“I have curly hair just like your mom.”

7. Spanish Conjunctions that Offer Alternatives

These conjunctions in Spanish help you choose between different alternatives.

  • O: “Or”

¿Quieres café o té?
“Would you like tea or coffee?”

  • U: “Or”

U has the same function that o does, but it’s used whenever the next word starts with –o. This is just like the –e to –y rule from earlier in this article. They sound the same, so you have to change the Spanish conjunction to hear the alternative given.

¿Quieres ir a California u Orlando?
“Do you want to go to California or to Orlando?”

California Car's Plate

¿A qué hora comienza la película, siete u ocho?
“What time does the movie start, at seven or eight?”

8. Spanish Subordinating Conjunctions

Subordinating conjunctions in Spanish allow you to join an independent sentence with a dependent sentence.

A dependent sentence alone wouldn’t make any sense without the independent one, thus these Spanish subordinating conjunctions will help you make sense of the whole sentence, situation, or event.

  • Porque: “Because”

No voy a ir al gimnasio porque me siento muy enferma.
“I am not going to the gym because I am not feeling well.”

  • Pues: “Since”

Deberíamos ir a cine el miércoles, pues creo que es más barato que el sábado.
“We should go to the movies on Wednesday since I think it’s cheaper than Saturday.”

  • Ya que: “Since”; “seeing that”

Voy a ir al mercadillo, ya que tengo que comprar verduras.
“I am going to the street market, since I have to buy vegetables.”

There are other synonyms with the same use as the ones above: dado que, por cuanto, a causa de que, por lo cual… They would be the same translations in English: “because,” “therefore,” “since…”

9. Spanish Conjunctions that Allow You to Give Reasons

This type of conjunction in Spanish allows you to give a reason for why something happens the way it does.

These useful Spanish conjunctions can help you answer the question ¿Por qué?, or “Why?” As for the first one on the list, you’ll simply use the two words together without the accent.

  • Porque: “Because”

No voy a la fiesta porque tengo que trabajar mañana en la mañana.
“I am not going to the party because I am working tomorrow morning.”

  • Ya que; puesto que; en vista de que: “Since”; “because”

No me he comprado un coche ya que no tengo dinero.
“I did not buy myself a car because I do not have any money.”

No vamos a ir al parque puesto que está lloviendo.
“We are not going to the park because it is raining.”

En vista de que no quieres comer nada, no te daré el helado tampoco.
“Since you haven’t eaten anything, I won’t give you ice cream either.”

Ice Cream

  • Pues: “Because”; “since”; “for”

Hemos decidido vender el coche, pues nos vamos a Inglaterra.
“We have decided to sell the car because we are going to England.”

  • Como: “Since”

Es mejor que cambies de profesión, como has pensado empezar de nuevo.
“It’s better to change your profession since you’ve thought to start again.”

10. Spanish Subjunctive Conjunctions

With some Spanish conjunctions, the subjunctive is needed to express a hypothetical uncertainty as to whether an action or event will take place, or whether or not a situation will happen.

  • A menos que: “Unless”

El gato se quedará dormido a menos que el ratón salga de su escondite.
“The cat will fall asleep unless the mouse gets out of its hideaway.”

  • En caso (de) que: “In case”

Voy a dejar las llaves del coche en caso de que quieras usarlo.
“I am going to leave the car keys in case you want to use them.”

  • Antes de que: “Before”

Antes de que salgas corriendo, déjame la comida preparada.
“Before you run out, leave the food ready for me.”

  • Con tal de que: “So that”

Limpié la casa con tal de que no discutiéramos.
“I cleaned the house so that we wouldn’t fight.”

  • Para que: “So that”

Voy a ir a supermercado para que tengas pan para mañana.
“I am going to the supermarket so that you have bread for tomorrow.”

  • Sin que: “Without”

Habían pasado tres semanas sin que Juan viera a Silvia.
“It had been three weeks without Juan seeing Silvia.”

11. Conclusion

Do you want to sound like a confident Spanish speaker? After this article, and lots of practice with important Spanish conjunctions, you will! These basic Spanish conjunctions will help you link different parts of sentences together. You can use them to include ideas in your sentences, or to exclude them. You have to be very clear about that; after this post, you get it, right?

Here at SpanishPod101, you can find many resources, forums, and even a Spanish conjunctions worksheet for extra Spanish conjunctions practice to help you learn at your own speed. Why don’t you give it a try? You lose nothing and gain more knowledge about our Spanish conjunctions list.

Happy learning!

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SpanishPod101’s Guide to Etiquette in Spanish-Speaking Countries

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When learning about etiquette in Spanish-speaking countries, keep in mind that every culture is different, and even neighboring countries might have very different customs from one another. Sometimes, what might seem normal or even polite to you could be interpreted as weird or rude in another country. In the same way, something you find rude might seem common to someone else. Don’t worry, though. We’re here to help you not make the same mistakes other people have made!

Maybe one of the first things you need to know here is that “etiquette” in Spanish is called protocolo or etiqueta. Even though protocolo is a bit more common, etiqueta is equally valid, so you can stick to whichever word you prefer!

Another thing you might want to do when trying to find out about Spanish etiquette is to do some online research on it, which is completely understandable. However, we did some reading too, and we want to warn you that if you do so, you might find Spanish “rules” of etiquette that are very outdated and not appropriate anymore.

For example, we read that women aren’t allowed to cross their legs or wear shorts, which is completely false nowadays. Trust us, you definitely can. Maybe not for formal occasions, but if you want to survive a Spanish summer, you might want to wear shorts when you go out with friends or family.

Here’s our practical, relevant guide on etiquette in Spanish-speaking countries. Read up and wow your hosts with your Spanish social etiquette!

Table of Contents

  1. Do’s and Don’ts for Dining
  2. Do’s and Don’ts for Sightseeing
  3. Do’s and Don’ts for Greetings
  4. Do’s and Don’ts for Visiting a House
  5. Do’s and Don’ts When Riding Public Means of Transportation
  6. Do’s and Don’ts for Business
  7. Do’s and Don’ts for Celebrations
  8. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn Spanish

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1. Do’s and Don’ts for Dining

Hygiene

Eating is an important part of any culture, but dining etiquette can be really different from one country to another. This makes knowing the most basic Spanish meal time etiquette essential. Here are the most basic Spanish dining etiquette rules to keep in mind.

  • No sorbas (Don’t slurp): While in other countries such as Japan, this is considered polite, it’s rude to slurp in Spain.
  • No eructes (Don’t burp): Just like slurping your food, burping is considered rude in Spain. Some people definitely burp in public, but trust us, no one likes those people.
  • No pongas los codos encima de la mesa (Don’t rest your elbows on the table): It’s allowed for your arms to be on the table, as long as your elbows aren’t touching it.
  • No insultes la comida española (Don’t insult Spanish cuisine): While this might sound obvious, there are ways of insulting Spanish cuisine that you might not realize are offensive to Spaniards. Take this example: In 2016, Jamie Oliver made the mistake of adding chorizo to a paella and posting it online. To save you from reading the entire article, we all went mad! In case you’re wondering, chorizo doesn’t go in paella. To this day, we still haven’t forgiven him. We could give you more examples, but they’re all quite similar: someone decides to cook a Spanish recipe, but gets a little too creative and makes the entire country of Spain go berserk. Just stick to our recipes; they’re already amazing and don’t need changes!

Family Celebration

  • Deberías esperar hasta que todos estén sentados y con comida en sus platos (You should wait until everyone is seated and has food on their plates): It’s considered rude to start eating if there are people at the table who haven’t been served their food. Or, in the case of dining in someone’s house, wait until everyone, including the guest, is sitting down.
  • Siempre deberías tener las manos visibles (Your hands should always be visible): While your elbows shouldn’t be on the table, as we mentioned before, hands should be.

When you’re dining at a restaurant, there are some other specific Spanish restaurant etiquette rules you need to know. For instance, is tipping expected in Spain?

  • Dejar propina es opcional (Tipping is optional): Spain isn’t like other countries such as the USA, where tipping is compulsory even if your server didn’t do a good job—and not only that, but you actually need to know math to know how much you need to tip! Tipping in Spain is seen as a nice gesture, but people usually only do it when they feel like they need to reward their server for a good job. And when you do so, you don’t need to think of what percentage is appropriate. Rather, it’s more about just giving them a couple of coins, whatever you have in your wallet, as you see fit.

If you’re dining in someone’s house, however, this is what you should keep in mind:

  • Deberías esperar a que alguien te muestre tu asiento o a que el resto de gente empiece a sentarse (You should wait until someone shows you to your seat or until people start to sit down): The host will often let you know where you can sit.
  • Deberías ofrecer tu ayuda al anfitrión (You should offer to help the host): This is considered polite, even though most of the time they’ll tell you not to worry and ask you to take a seat.

2. Do’s and Don’ts for Sightseeing

Bad Phrases

We don’t think we need to teach you basic Spanish protocol and etiquette when it comes to sightseeing, such as not cutting in line and respecting other people’s cultures, but some things might not be exactly the same everywhere.

For example, here’s something you should always keep in mind when you’re on an escalator. They normally have signs that explain what is prohibited, such as wearing flip-flops, but there’s one unspoken rule that’s never included on the signs but that everyone knows:

  • Siempre deberías quedarte en el lado derecho (You should always stand on the right side): Unless you’re walking, you should always stay on your right whenever you’re on an escalator. It doesn’t matter if you’re going up or down: the left side is only for walking. Don’t use an escalator like the man in the picture, he’s doing it wrong!

Man Standing on the Escalator

Another matter that can be a little bit complicated if you’re not familiar with it is visiting a church. Here are a few Spanish culture and etiquette tips you should know if you want to visit a church or cathedral in Spain:

  • No lleves pantalones cortos ni sandalias (Don’t wear shorts or sandals): This is common in most places of worship, but it’s good to remember.
  • Deberías apagar o poner en silencio el móvil (You should turn off or silence your phone): Again, this is quite normal and shouldn’t surprise you.
  • Deberías prestar atención a los carteles (You should pay attention to the posters): Churches usually have posters with signs that you should follow. For example, sometimes they’ll ask you not to take photos, or if you do, to always take them without flash.

3. Do’s and Don’ts for Greetings

What is Spanish greeting etiquette? We already taught you pretty much everything you need to know about greeting someone in Spanish in different situations in our article titled How to Say “Hello” in Spanish. But we thought we should remind you of a few non-verbal gestures you should or shouldn’t do when greeting someone. (If you’re wondering about Spanish phone etiquette, though, you’ll also find this in the above-mentioned article.)

  • Deberías hacer contacto visual (You should make eye contact): Unlike in some other cultures, in Spain, eye contact is seen as a symbol of confidence. However, keep in mind that while we advise you to make eye contact, you shouldn’t make it extreme. Remember to blink and don’t have your eyes wide open like a crazy person. You want to look confident, not creepy!
  • Si no estás seguro de qué deberías hacer, espera unos segundos (If you’re unsure what you should do, wait a few seconds): We don’t want this greeting to become an awkward encounter, but waiting a few seconds until the other person starts the greeting won’t hurt anyone.

4. Do’s and Don’ts for Visiting a House

Thank You

Etiquette when visiting a house also tends to change from country to country. Here are a few Spanish etiquette tips that you’ll find helpful when you’re invited to someone’s house:

  • No te quites los zapatos a menos que te digan lo contrario (Don’t take your shoes off unless told otherwise): In many cultures, it’s common to take off your shoes when you enter a house, and sometimes even other kinds of buildings. In Spain, this isn’t very common, but it still might be preferred in certain households. So what we recommend is that you don’t take them off unless they specifically ask you to do so. If you’re unsure, you can always ask them, just in case!
  • Deberías llevar un detalle (You should bring a small present): It’s common to bring something, such as a bottle of wine or some sort of sweets, especially if you’ve been invited for a meal. The word we used in Spanish is detalle, which literally means “detail,” and refers to something small yet thoughtful.
  • Deberías hacer un cumplido a su hogar (You should compliment their home): The classic “You have a lovely home” should do the trick. To say this in Spanish, you could go for Tienes (if you’re visiting someone who lives alone) or Tenéis (if you’re visiting someone who lives with other people) una casa preciosa.

5. Do’s and Don’ts When Riding Public Means of Transportation

We think there are not that many rules when it comes to public transportation that differ from other countries, but we’ll remind you of a few of them. Here’s some practical information on Spanish taxi etiquette and how to act when on other means of transportation.

  • Deberías saludar al conductor (You should greet the driver): Either on a bus or on a taxi, it’s considered polite to greet the driver when you get in—and of course, in the case of a taxi, also when you get out. In most public buses in Spain, the exit is only through the back, so you don’t see the driver again and therefore you don’t necessarily need to say goodbye. Of course, if you’re taking the train or the metro, you won’t see the driver, so you don’t have to greet anyone.
  • Deberías ofrecer tu asiento a alguien que lo necesite más que tú (You should offer your seat to someone who needs it more than you): If you’re sitting down and someone enters who might need to sit down more than you do, you should offer them your seat. We’re referring, for example, to old people, handicapped people, pregnant women, among others. Out of politeness, they might refuse it sometimes, but it’s common and considered polite to insist a little bit more.
  • Debes comprar un billete (You must buy a ticket): We don’t think we need to say this, but just in case, don’t forget to pay for your ticket! Or the ride, if you’re taking a taxi.

6. Do’s and Don’ts for Business

Business

If you work in Spain or travel there for work, you might need a couple of tips, even though Spanish business etiquette is quite international.

  • Deberías dar la mano (You should shake their hand): This is the basic rule for greeting someone in a business environment, but there is an exception. As we explained in our article about greetings, it’s common in Spain to kiss someone twice when greeting them. While in this context a handshake would be the usual greeting, if you’re greeting a woman who’s offering you her cheek, you should kiss her on her cheeks; if you’re a woman and you’re greeting a man who looks like he’s about to kiss you, don’t shy out and offer him your cheek. If you ignore this greeting, it might look like you want to avoid them, and we’re sure you don’t want to do that.
  • No lleves ropa informal a menos que te digan lo contrario (Don’t wear casual clothes unless told otherwise): More often than not, you should wear formal yet simple clothes.

People Shaking Hands

7. Do’s and Don’ts for Celebrations

Often, celebrations have more rules than we wish they had. We’ll show you a few basic Spanish etiquette and customs for celebrations, but sometimes these rules depend on the specific event, so you might have to ask whoever invited you to the event. For example, whether you should wear formal or casual clothes, or whether you can bring your kids or not.

Something that’s applicable to different kinds of celebrations is the act of making a toast. In Spanish, this is called brindar, and there are a couple of ways of saying “Cheers.” One of them is ¡Salud! and another one, which people tend to find interesting, is ¡Chinchín! Many people think this is an onomatopoeia that resembles the clashing of glasses, but as it turns out, it actually isn’t; it comes from Chinese. In some families, it’s considered bad luck for people to drink water in these cases, but it’s nothing you need to worry about if you don’t feel like drinking alcohol.

Spanish Wedding Etiquette

  • Deberías comprar un regalo (You should buy a present): It’s common to get presents for the bride and groom, but remember that you’re not meant to bring it to the wedding. Sometimes, instead of getting them a present, you can transfer some money to a bank account that they will provide.
  • No vayas de blanco (Don’t wear white): The only person who’s allowed to wear white is the bride.

Bride and Groom While People Throw Petals

Spanish Etiquette for Birthdays

If it’s your birthday:

  • Invita a tus amigos a una comida (Invite your friends for a meal): Either breakfast, lunch, dinner, or something in between, it’s common to invite your friends (and/or family) to have a meal, and to pay for all of them. This can be at a restaurant or at your place, and it doesn’t need to be fancy or a big celebration. We’ll leave this up to you.

If it’s someone else’s birthday:

  • Deberías llevar un regalo (You should bring a present): We guess this is common in most cultures, but it’s customary to bring a present for the person who’s celebrating their birthday.

Etiquette for Births

  • Deberías llevar un regalo (You should bring a present): It’s common to bring a present for the new parents, either to the hospital if they’re family or close friends, or whenever you see them. The present is normally something for the newborn, but it can be something for the parents as well.

Spanish Funeral Etiquette

  • Deberías dar el pésame (You should give your condolences): It’s common to say Lo siento (I’m sorry), but if you knew this person really well, their family might appreciate it if you said something slightly more personal, yet brief. Let them know you cared about them.
  • Deberías presentarte (You should introduce yourself): If the family of the deceased person never met you before, you should introduce yourself to them and let them know how you knew him or her.
  • No es necesario vestir de negro (It’s not necessary to wear black): Even though it’s still rather common, it’s not compulsory to wear black clothes anymore.

Something else you should know is that it’s common to bring flowers, and sometimes even flower crowns, as a group present.

For other celebrations and festivities, such as New Year’s Eve, you can check out our lesson on Spain’s New Year’s traditions, or another lesson on how to celebrate Christmas in Spain that might be interesting to know if you’re in Spain for the holidays.

8. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn Spanish

Keep in mind that no one will judge you if you don’t remember all of these rules we just listed. If you’re ever unsure what you can and can’t do, don’t hesitate to ask someone. They will perfectly understand that you’re foreign and not completely familiar with our traditions and customs yet. This is especially true in very specific celebrations, such as weddings, that don’t happen everyday.

Are any of the customs we went over similar to those in your country? We look forward to hearing from you in the comments!

At SpanishPod101.com, you can learn everything you need to know about Spain, its culture, and its language. From vocabulary lists to lessons, we have anything you might need. Join us and learn Spanish like never before!

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Spanish Dates: Days of the Week in Spanish and More

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Writing and saying dates in Spanish is a must when trying to improve your understanding of the language. In today’s world, you may want to write an email, book your next holiday to a Spanish-speaking destination, or set up a date. Or maybe you’re just having trouble reading dates in Spanish. No matter your reasons for learning Spanish, learning how to write dates in Spanish correctly could help you avoid some hassle.

It’s time to learn the dates in Spanish.

Maybe you think it’s enough to translate the numbers and the months…but let me tell you that expressing dates in Spanish is different than doing so in English ( U.K. English or U.S. English).

In this article, you’ll learn the rules for writing dates in Spanish, useful phrases for asking for and telling dates in Spanish, and much, much more about Spanish dates!

Let’s start with the basics.

Table of Contents

  1. Days of the Week in Spanish
  2. Days of the Month in Spanish
  3. Months in Spanish
  4. How to Say Dates in Spanish: Years
  5. How to Write the Date in Spanish
  6. Spanish Vocabulary for Setting Up a Date
  7. Must-Know Phrases to Talk about the Date in Spanish
  8. Using Prepositions When Learning Spanish Dates
  9. Spanish Expressions about Dates
  10. Conclusion: How SpanishPod101 Can Help You Master Spanish Dates

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1. Days of the Week in Spanish

Weekdays

Before getting into writing dates in Spanish format and how to say calendar dates in Spanish, you need to learn the days of the week in Spanish. The first thing you need to know is that in Spanish, the week starts on Monday instead of Sunday. You may have noticed that in the Spanish calendar, the first day is an L, for lunes; this is “Monday.” Unlike some countries, Spain and many other European countries consider Sunday to be the last day of the week, rather than the first.

Sunday is the day of prayer, and the day to go to church. This is also why on most Sundays everything is closed in Spain. Today, in the modern world, things have changed, and Sundays are just a day off for people who work a nine-to-five schedule. Sundays continue to be a day off because of Catholic tradition.

Catholic Church Interior

What are the rest of the days of the week in Spanish?

  • Lunes = “Monday”

Example:
Los lunes han empezado a ser mi día favorito de la semana.
“Mondays are now my favorite day of the week.”

  • Martes = “Tuesday”

Example:
Los martes tengo ensayo con mi grupo de percusión.
“On Tuesdays, I have a rehearsal with my percussion group.”

  • Miércoles = “Wednesday”

Example:
El día que más me cuesta seguir con mi entrenamiento es el miércoles.
“The day that I find most difficult to continue with my training is Wednesday.”

  • Jueves = “Thursday”

Example:
Los jueves empiezo a trabajar a las 8 de la mañana.
“I start working at 8 a.m. on Thursdays.”

  • Viernes = “Friday”

Example:
¡Por fin es viernes!
“Thank God it’s Friday!”

  • Sábado = “Saturday”

Example:
Los sábados aprovecho para salir de fiesta con mis amigos.
“I go out on Saturdays with my friends.”

  • Domingo = “Sunday”

Example:
El domingo es el día del Señor.
“Sunday is God’s day.”

The days of the week in Spanish are all masculine, so you say el lunes for “Monday.” Unlike in English, in Spanish, you don’t need to capitalize the days.

The first five days of the week in Spanish: lunes, martes, miércoles, jueves, and viernes are called días de la semana: “weekdays.” Sábado and domingo are the fines de semana: “the weekend.”

Calendar with Pages Flipping

When learning the days in Spanish, you’ll also notice that in the Spanish calendar, the days of the week are written L M X J V S D. This is because martes, “Tuesday” and miércoles, “Wednesday,” start with M. To avoid confusion, miércoles will always appear as an X.

If you want a fun way to learn about them, you can also sing the days of the week in Spanish with a song!

2. Days of the Month in Spanish

In English, you must use ordinal numbers to say the date. But to say the days of the month in Spanish, you can use cardinal numbers. Uno de marzo: “First of March.”

In some Latin American countries, you may hear: Primero de mayo for “First of May.”

Here’s a list of the cardinal numbers you’ll need for months and dates in Spanish, from one to ten.

  • Uno = “First
  • Dos = “Second
  • Tres = “Third
  • Cuatro = “Fourth
  • Cinco = “Fifth
  • Seis = “Sixth
  • Siete = “Seventh
  • Ocho = “Eighth
  • Nueve = “Ninth
  • Diez = “Tenth

More examples:
Dos de mayo.
“Second of May.”

Note that while in English you must use “1st of May,” when giving dates in Spanish, you don’t need to use 1ero de mayo.

Example:
1 de mayo.
“1st of May.”

3. Months in Spanish

Months

Learning the months of the year in Spanish can be easy because they’re almost the same as in English. Here are the names of the twelve months of the year in Spanish. It’s only Enero meaning “January” that doesn’t start with the same letter.

Another important thing to know when you’re learning the dates in Spanish is that when writing the date in Spanish, you don’t need to capitalize the month. Some may find this an informal way to write dates in Spanish, but it’s not. It’s acceptable.

  • Enero = “January”
  • Febrero = “February”
  • Marzo = “March”
  • Abril = “April”
  • Mayo = “May”
  • Junio = “June”
  • Julio = “July”
  • Agosto = “August”
  • Septiembre = “September”
  • Octubre = “October”
  • Noviembre = “November”
  • Diciembre = “December”

4. How to Say Dates in Spanish: Years

When pronouncing the years in Spanish, you can find one difference.

In English, you can say “twenty-nineteen” (2019) instead of “two-thousand nineteen.” In Spanish, you have to say dos mil diecinueve, instead of veinte diecinueve. This is one of the most common mistakes that English speakers make when learning how to write the date in Spanish. But once you get this down, learning dates in Spanish will be much simpler.

In Spanish, you can still find the use of Roman numerals when writing about centuries. As you may understand them in English, here’s a reminder of the Roman numerals from one to ten: I-II-III-IV-V-VI-VII-VIII-IX-X.

Examples:

  • Esto es el Siglo XX.
    “This is the 20th century.”
  • El carbón fue descubierto en el Siglo II.
    “Carbon was discovered in the 2nd century.”

Another common form to use for an important date in Spanish is by using the acronyms “B.C. (before Christ),” which is a.C (antes de Cristo) in Spanish, and “A.C (after Christ)” or d.C (después de Cristo) in Spanish.

Example:

  • El oro fue descubierto 6000 a.C.
    “Gold was discovered in 6000 B.C.”

5. How to Write the Date in Spanish

Numbers

Now, how are dates in Spanish written out?

When learning how to write the date in Spanish, here’s the formula of how to do it right. Once you know this formula, you’ll never do it wrong again.

                              El+[day of the week]+de+[month]+de+[year]
                                        El 22 de junio de 2019

In Spanish is just the opposite of U.S. English; we use the DD/MM/YY format. A more formal way to say the date in Spanish is:

                    [day of the week], el [day of the month in number] de [month] de [year]
                              Sábado, 22 de junio de 2019

The examples above are the most common way to say the date in Spanish. However, if you want to write about the date in Spanish, there are many different ways you can do this. Also, keep in mind that writing the date varies among Spanish-speaking countries. In Spanish, these are the most popular ways:

1- Numeric

The formula for writing the date in Spanish is Day+Month+Year. However, you can divide the date in different ways:

You can divide them with dots: 12.03.2019; with slashes 12/03/2019; and with hyphens 12-03-2019. You can even omit the zero: 12/3/2019, although it’s more formal to keep the zero.

When writing the year in Spanish, you can also omit the first two numbers instead of writing out the whole of “2019.” You can just write 12/03/19, as long as the shortened year is the current year.

Calendar with Date Highlighted

2- Words and Numbers

Writing the date in Spanish by mixing the numerals with words is very common, especially in setting future dates, since you may want the other person to remember the month. The formula is the same as the numerical one.

                    (number of the day)+de+(name of the month)+de+(numeral of the year)
                              22 de junio de 2019

Example:

  • Nos vemos entonces el 23 de septiembre, 2019.
    “We should see, then, on the 23rd of September, 2019.”

You can also write the whole date as veintidós de junio de dos mil diecinueve or “twenty-two of June of two-thousand and nineteen.” But this is less common.

6. Spanish Vocabulary for Setting Up a Date:

  • Fecha = “Date”
  • Hoy = “Today”
  • Fin de semana = “Weekend”
  • Ayer = “Yesterday”
  • Próxima semana = “Next week”
  • Anteayer o antes de ayer = “The day before yesterday”
  • Mañana = “Tomorrow”
  • Pasado mañana = “The day after tomorrow”
  • Día = “Day”
  • Semana = “Week”
  • Día de la semana = “Weekday”
  • Mes = “Month”
  • Estación = “Season”
  • Año = “Year”
  • Año bisiesto = “Leap year”
  • Siglo = “Century”
  • Milenio = “Millennium”
  • Década = “Decade”

7. Must-Know Phrases to Talk about the Date in Spanish

Time is constantly and consistently present in our lives. We live in a world where we arrange the time for everything. The time to work, the time to study, the time to exercise, and the time to travel. It’s also the number-one topic of conversation topic, because when you’re learning a new language, you’ll always try to set dates to meet others so that you can talk and improve your skills. If you’re trying to break the ice, here are some questions you may ask:

  • ¿Cuándo empieza el verano?
    “When does the summer start?”
  • ¿Cuándo empieza la escuela?
    “When does your school start?”
  • ¿Cuándo es tu cumpleaños?
    “When is your birthday?”
  • ¿Tienes planes para el 14 de febrero?
    “Do you have any plans on the 14th of February?”
  • ¿Qué día es hoy?
    “What day is it today?”

Note that the last phrase is only used as a reminder of the day of the week, because in Spanish it’s also used to ask the day of the month or the completion date.

You’ll also hear questions like: ¿A cuánto estamos hoy? meaning “How far are we today?” or ¿A qué día estamos hoy? meaning “What day are we on today?”

When someone asks the last question, it always refers to the day and also the current month: Hoy es veinticinco de enero meaning “Today is the 25th of January.”

8. Using Prepositions When Learning Spanish Dates

When writing and speaking about the date in Spanish, it’s essential to understand how to use the prepositions correctly. In English, you use “on” when referring to something that happened (or will happen) on a specific date: “The meeting was on Tuesday.” In Spanish, you can use el: La reunión fue el martes. “On” can be translated as en, but you need to learn how to use it appropriately.

Example:

  • Estamos en marzo
    “It’s March.”

Example:

  • Te veo el sabado
    “I will see you on Saturday.”

The prepositions desde-hasta and de-al are normally used to talk about date intervals. Unlike in English, where you just need to use “from” or “to.”

Example:

  • El verano es desde junio hasta septiembre.
    “Summer is from June until September.”

Example:

  • Estaré de vacaciones del 2 al 20 de agosto.
    “I will be on vacation from 2nd to 20th August.”

The use of the preposition del in Spanish is the union of de + el= del.

Example:

  • Hoy es 14 de abril del 2019.
    “Today is the 14th of April of 2019.”

Another important preposition to learn is durante. Durante means “during” and “throughout.” In Spanish, you can use durante whenever you want to talk about a date occurring during a certain timeframe.

Examples:

  • La globalización habrá empezado durante el siglo XIX.
    “Globalization may have started during the 19th century.”
  • Sarah ha estado en forma durante toda su vida.
    “Sarah was very fit throughout her life.”

9. Spanish Expressions about Dates

Understanding an expression when learning a new language is the best way to know if you’re improving. Keep these Spanish expressions in mind. Make jokes while learning and leveling up!

Woman Having an Idea

  • Gracias al mundial de fútbol, los hoteles están haciendo su agosto.
    “Thanks to the FIFA World Cup, hotels are having a field day.”

This expression means that August is one of the most touristic months. In Spain, this is when everyone takes holidays, so the tourist companies are having a field day.

  • Siempre estás en medio como los jueves.
    “You’re always in between like Thursdays!”

This expression may not need any explanation. But basically, Thursdays are in the middle of the week (no one likes the middle of the week!), so when someone’s disturbing you, you can tell them this.

  • En abril aguas mil.
    “In April it rains a lot.”

This expression is about the weather. April is a rainy month in Spain.

  • Cuando en marzo mayea, en mayo marcea.
    “If in March mayea, in May marcea.”

This expression is also about the weather. It means that if March is like the weather in May, May will be like the weather in March.

  • Como agua de mayo.
    “Like May’s water.”

This expression comes from the life in the countryside. April and May are rainy months which are perfect for the plantations. The rain allows the fruit trees to bloom in their greatest splendor. So, if someone says Como agua de mayo, it means that something has come perfectly and at the right time.

Example:

  • La paga extra de verano me viene como agua de mayo!
    “The summer extra pay comes like May’s water!”

10. Conclusion: How SpanishPod101 Can Help You Master Spanish Dates

So next time you’re planning a trip with your fellow Spanish friends, you can be certain that your date matches theirs. This way, you can enjoy planning events, holidays, and days out, while also ensuring that you’ll be there at the right time.

What did you find most useful in this article? What are you still struggling with? Let us know in the comments! Remember that when it comes to dates in Spanish, practice is essential. Why not leave us a comment with today’s date in Spanish too? 🙂

You can also download our dates vocabulary sheet for free and have it on hand for any questions you may have.

SpanishPod101 has many free vocabulary lists about the Spanish days of the week, months in Spanish, and how to write the date in Spanish. Get cracking!

With enough studying, practice, and determination, you’ll be speaking Spanish like a native! And SpanishPod101 will be here for every step of your language-learning journey.

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The Best Guide to Naming Your Family in Spanish

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Do you know the top reasons for learning Spanish? In today’s world, you’re very likely to have a friend, family member, or a loved one who speaks Spanish. Learning to name the family members in Spanish is the best place to start when seeking to learn their language, because family in Spanish-speaking countries is a strong institution. That’s also why these cultures are so welcoming.

Learn the different ways to say “mother” in Spanish and “father” in Spanish. No matter the reasons you want to learn Spanish, practice how to say family member names in Spanish so next time you’re invited to spend your summer holiday with your lover’s family, you can impress them with your conversation comprehension.

So how do you talk about the family in Spanish? If you’ve ever visited Spain or stayed in Spain for a lengthy period of time, you’ve probably noticed the use of diminutives quite often: Tita, Abuelita, and even Andreita. This is one of the most common ways that family in Spanish cultures speaks to each other. It often means that you have a close relationship with your family members.

In Spain, it’s very common for the whole family to gather on Sundays to have lunch, and if you ever get invited to one, you’ll notice how they name family members in Spanish. You may feel confused as to why they use so many terms for “mother” in Spanish or “father” in Spanish, especially in terms of these diminutives. But don’t worry. If you’re called Pablito, that means they’re getting to know you better and they consider you part of the family as well.

In this article, you’ll learn how to talk about the Spanish family tree, go over some family in Spanish vocabulary, and read some Spanish sentences about family members to help you understand how it’s used! Let’s get started!

Table of Contents

  1. Gender and Family Members in Spanish
  2. Family Tree in Spanish
  3. Terms for Relatives
  4. Family Member Terms as a Married Person
  5. Endearment Terms to Name Family Members in Spanish
  6. Spanish Idioms about Family Members
  7. Fun Facts to Help You Learn Spanish
  8. Polysemy of Words in the Spanish Language
  9. Conclusion: Let SpanishPod101 Help You Master Spanish!

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1. Gender and Family Members in Spanish

Parents Phrases

When learning Spanish, it’s vital to know that Spanish is a phonetic language: every single letter is pronounced. Like English, Spanish may be considered an easy language to learn. As a beginner, you may be surprised to find that there are rarely any surprises in spelling or pronunciation. Spanish is also considered the second most spoken language in the world because it’s spoken in about twenty-one countries today; it has millions of native speakers in the Americas and Spain.

So before we begin talking about things like how to describe family in Spanish, we’ll go over some basic rules you should know.

1- O and A

Knowing how to correctly name family members in Spanish begins with realizing that Spanish is grammatically gendered. Spanish nouns are classified as either masculine (often ending in –o) or feminine (often ending in –a).

One example of this difference between English and Spanish is when you use the masculine and the feminine primo and prima. In English, “cousin” is used for both male and female cousins, whereas in Spanish they differ by the ending vowel (-o or –a).

Example:

  • Primo = “Male cousin”
    • Yo tengo un primo que se llama Alejandro.
    • “I have a cousin named Alejandro.”
  • Prima = “Female cousin”
    • Mi prima se llama Andrea.
    • “I have a cousin named Andrea.”

An exception is:

  • Marido = “Husband”
  • Esposa = “Wife”

Note that its feminine form is not marida.

Another difference between English and Spanish is how you refer to both male and female siblings. The masculine-sounding Los hermanos in Spanish refers to both your brothers and sisters, whereas “siblings” is a gender-neutral word.

Example:
Yo tengo dos hermanos: José y Mónica.
“I have two siblings: José and Mónica.”

2- Masculine and Feminine Articles

The use of articles when you’re talking about a family member in Spanish also helps new learners understand gender use in Spanish.

Female articles: La, las, una, unas.
Male articles: El, los, un, unos.

Example:
La prima de Juan se llama Andrea.
“Juan’s cousin is Andrea.”

Example:
Juana es la nuera de mi madre.
“Juana is my mother’s daughter-in-law.”

2. Family Tree in Spanish

Family Words

If you’re a beginner in Spanish, one of the best ways to practice is by talking about your family (and extended family) in Spanish. Family reunions in Spain and Latin-America are a strong part of their culture, so if you’re ever invited to a family party, here are some questions you may ask when practicing your Spanish. But first, some must-know terms for family members in Spanish and other Spanish family vocabulary.

  • Mi familia = “My family”
  • Abuela = “Grandmother”
    • Example:
      ¿Cómo se llama tu abuela?
      “What is your grandmother’s name?”
  • Abuelo = “Grandfather”
    • Example:
      ¿En qué trabaja tu abuelo?
      “What does your grandfather do?”
  • Madre = “Mother”
    • Example:
      ¿Cuántos años tiene tu madre?
      “How old is your mother?”
  • Padre = “Father”
    • Example:
      ¿Dónde vive tu padre?
      “Where does your father live?”
  • Hermano = “Brother”
    • Example:
      ¿Tu hermano tiene hijos?
      “Does your brother have any children?”
  • Hermana = “Sister”
      Example:
      ¿A qué se dedica tu hermana?
      “What does your sister do for a living?”

3. Terms for Relatives

Once you’ve got the family tree in Spanish, including its vocabulary and Spanish use of gender, you can continue the conversation. Here are some questions your may be asked by “relatives” (parientes or familiares), and some more family vocabulary:

  • Tío = “Uncle”
    • Example:
      ¿Tu cuántos tíos tienes por parte de tu madre?
      “How many uncles do you have on your mother’s side?”
  • Tía = “Aunt”
    • Example:
      ¿Es Miryam la tía más joven que tiene Abigail?
      “Is Miryam the youngest aunt that Abigail has?”
  • Primo = “Male cousin”
    • Example:
      ¿Cuántos años tiene tu primo Alejandro?
      “How old is your cousin Alejandro?”
  • Prima = “Female cousin”
    • Example:
      Yo tengo una prima que se llama Andrea.
      “I have a cousin named Andrea.”
  • Sobrina = “Niece”
  • Sobrino = “Nephew”
    • Example:
      ¿Tú tienes sobrinos?
      “Do you have any nieces or nephews?”

4. Family Member Terms as a Married Person

Newlywed Couple

  • La familia política = “The in-laws.” It refers to the people that one is related to through marriage.
  • Cuñado = “Brother-in-law”
    • Example:
      Mi cuñado me ha prestado su coche.
      “My brother-in-law lent me his car.”
  • Cuñada = “Sister-in-law”
    • Example:
      Mi cuñada está muy enamorada de mi hermano.
      “My sister-in-law is very much in love with my brother.”
  • Yerno = “Son-in-law”
    • Example:
      Mi yerno es abogado.
      “My son-in-law is a lawyer.”
  • Nuera = “Daughter-in-law”
    • Example:
      ¿Cómo se dice nuera en Español?
      “How do you say daughter-in-law in Spanish?”
  • Suegra = “Mother-in-law”
    • Example:
      Mi suegra cocina muy bien.
      “My mother-in-law is a great cook.”
  • Suegro = “Father-in-law”
    • Example:
      El suegro de mi hermana es muy amable.
      “My sister’s father-in-law is very kind.”

Unlike in English, in Spanish there are two terms to name the mother-/father-in-law of your son: consuegra or consuegro, respectively.

  • Consuegra = “Mother-in-law of your son”
    • Example:
      Mi consuegra cocina muy bien.
      “My son’s mother-in-law is a great cook.”
  • Consuegro = “Father-in-law of my son”
    • Example:
      Mi consuegro es un funcionario público.
      “My son’s father-in-law is a public officer.”

5. Endearment Terms to Name Family Members in Spanish

Family Quotes

Your Spanish family members vocabulary won’t be complete until you know some of the most common endearment terms for different family members.

In Spanish, we use diminutive terms to name our loved ones. When learning Spanish, it’s very interesting to know that the use of diminutive words may mean that the relationship is very close. You just need to add the suffix –ito to the end of the word.

Example:

  • Abuelito instead of abuelo (or “grandpa” in English)
  • Tita instead of tía (or “aunt” in English).

Some relatives can be named in two ways. For example, you can use padre/papá for “father” in Spanish and madre/mamá for “mother” in Spanish. Generally, kids name their mother mamá and their father papá. Mamá and papá should have an accent on the last vowel, otherwise they mean something different.

Ways to name your mother with affection:
Ma
Mamá
Amá

Ways to name your father with affection:
Pa
Papá
Apá

Ways to name your grandfather with affection:
Yayo
Abuelito
Abu

Ways to name your grandmother with affection:
Yaya
Nana
Abuelita
Abu

6. Spanish Idioms about Family Members

Family at the Mall

If you’ve been learning Spanish for some time now, and you would like to take your learning to the next level, we’ll present you with the most common Spanish idioms that involve family members.

If you take the English expression “like father, like son,” note that in Spanish, you can use the expression de tal palo tal astilla which means exactly the same thing. Expressions in the Spanish language are based on culture; they should never be translated literally, so be careful because they vary among all native Spanish speakers.

Idioms like the ones below always give a fresh and different touch to the conversation, and are a great sign that you’re ready for the next level of learning. Enjoy the ride!

1- Parece que no tienes abuela

Literal translation:
“It seems that you don’t have a grandmother.”

Meaning:
When someone has a high opinion of themselves, you can say: Parece que no tienes abuela. Why? Grandmothers normally praise their grandchildren, so this expression is used to say that someone doesn’t need a grandmother because they praise themselves instead.

Example:
A: La noche del viernes me corté el pelo de tal manera que todas las chicas a mi alrededor iban girándose por la calle y admirando mi melena.

B: Vaya Juan… ¡parece que no tienes abuela!

—–

A: “Friday night I got a haircut in such a way that all the girls around me were doing double takes on the street and admiring my beautiful hair.”

B: “Waoo Juan…it seems that you don’t need a grandmother!”

2- Salirse de madre

Literal translation:
“To get out of mother.”

Meaning:
This phrase is used when excess of something is involved. “Do you know when is enough?” could be a rough English equivalent. In fact, its origin goes back to when it rained so much that the rivers overflowed.

Example:
La fiesta en casa de Alberto empezó bien hasta que nos bebimos 3 copas y se salió de madre
“The party at Alberto’s house was fine till we had three drinks and it got out of mother.”

3- Ciento y la madre

Literal translation:
“A hundred and the mother.”

Meaning:
This expression is used when an area is very crowded, so you don’t know how many people there are.

Example:
Vinieron todos los amigos de Lorenzo y eran ciento y la madre.
“When all of Lorenzo’s friends came, they were a hundred and the mother.”

4- Cuando seas padre, comerás huevos

Literal translation:
“When you are a father you will eat eggs.”

Meaning:
In Spain, you can use this expression when someone doesn’t have enough experience in something; perhaps he/she is too young or just lacks knowledge. This expression relates to the past, when eggs were a very appreciated food. In fact, the father was the only one who was able to have eggs at all, so when his children asked for eggs, the mother used to say: “When you’re a father, you’ll eat eggs.”

Example:
A: Mami, mañana me gustaría volver a las tres de la mañana con el resto de mis amigos.
B: No hijo, a la una como siempre. Cuando seas padre comerás huevos.

A: “Mum, I would like to come back home tomorrow at three a.m. with the rest of my friends.”
B: “No dear, at one a.m. as always. When you are a father you will eat eggs.”

5- Éramos pocos y parió la abuela

Literal translation:
“We were few and the grandmother gave birth.”

Meaning:
This is the Spanish translation of Murphy’s Law. When everything is going wrong, and suddenly even more bad things happen, you can say: Éramos pocos y parió la abuela.

Example:
¡Éramos pocos y parió la abuela! No tuve suficiente con que se me rompiera el coche sino que además también tuve que cambiar la cerradura de casa porque me dejé las llaves dentro.

“We were few and the grandmother gave birth! It wasn’t enough when my car broke down, I also had to change my house’s lock because I left my keys inside.”

7. Fun Facts to Help You Learn Spanish

Father and Son

Terms like amigovio or follamigo are allowed by the Spanish Royal Academy (RAE). However, keep in mind that they’re used colloquially to refer to a person with whom one has a romantic or sexual relationship. It’s not formal. In English, this would be a “friend with benefits.” Amigovios is used more in Latin- American countries, and follamigo in Spain.

Amigo (friend) + Novio (boyfriend) = Amigovio
Follar (“f***) + Amigo (friend) = Follamigo

Example:
Somos amigovios.
“We are just friends with benefits.”

8. Polysemy of Words in the Spanish Language

When learning Spanish, polysemic words are a common problem for beginners who are discovering new vocabulary, because a word with several meanings is normally used for context-specific purposes. We have to admit that when learning a new language, it’s very funny when understanding that esposas means both “wives” and “handcuffs.”

  • Esposas = “Handcuffs”
    • Example:
      El policía tiene un par de esposas.
      “The police officer has a pair of handcuffs.”
  • Esposa = “Wife”
    • Example:
      Los cristianos no pueden tener muchas esposas.
      “Christians cannot have multiple wives.”
  • Gemelos = “Twin”
    • Example:
      Mi amigo Andrés tiene un gemelo.
      “My friend Andres has a twin.”
  • Gemelo = “Calf muscle”
    • Example:
      Me duelen los gemelos después de ir al gimnasio.
      “My calf muscles hurt after the gym.”
  • Gemelos = “Opera glasses”
    • Example:
      Para ir a ver ópera hay que llevar gemelos sino no podrás ver nada.
      “To go to the opera you must bring your binoculars, otherwise you will not see anything.”
  • Gemelos = “Cufflinks”
    • Example:
      Voy a comprarle a mi padre un par de gemelos para su cumpleaños.
      “I am going to buy my father a pair of cufflinks for his birthday.”

9. Conclusion: Let SpanishPod101 Help You Master Spanish!

So next time you’re at a party and encounter a Spanish speaker, you should ask about their family; there’s no better ice breaker, don’t you agree? They enjoy talking about their extended families. You can also download our Family and Relatives Cheat Sheet for free and have it on hand for any questions you may have!

SpanishPod101 has prepared a list of useful Spanish gender pronouns to help you establish a conversation about family members for your studies.

SpanishPod101 has many vocabulary lists available on our website for you to consult for free, and of course our Spanish Resource Corner for any other questions you may have. Why don’t you prepare a self-introduction, including your family members, in the comment section below?

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74 Common Spanish Travel Phrases

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One of the most common answers language learners give when we’re asked why we chose to learn that language is because we like the country or countries where it’s spoken. Therefore, it’s not a surprise that if you’re learning Spanish, you might like to visit Spain. So why not learn Spanish travel words and phrases?

Whether you choose to travel to Spain for a short holiday or for a longer time, here you’ll learn all the vocabulary you need to find your way in Madrid, Barcelona, Seville, or any other city you want to visit. You probably already know that Spanish people aren’t that great at speaking English, especially in small towns, so if you want to avoid misunderstandings, this is the way to go.

Our purpose today is to teach you some common Spanish travel phrases that will help you be understood if you need help while you’re traveling in Spain—or if you want to order food, book a hotel room, get a cab, or take the bus. But even more importantly, we’re going to help you understand the answers you’ll receive!

Surely you don’t want to ask a local how to get to your hotel only to not understand the answer. That would make the whole process of learning the questions quite useless, wouldn’t it? Well, there’s no need to worry, because we’re making sure our guide of Spanish for travelers includes all of the Spanish phrases for travel you’ll need.

Without further ado, let’s delve into our list of useful Spanish words for tourists!

Table of Contents

  1. Ten Basic Expressions
  2. Nine Simple Conversation Phrases
  3. Nine Basic Spanish Phrases for Travel
  4. Seven Sentences You Might Need When Shopping
  5. Nine Sentences You Might Need in a Restaurant
  6. Nine Sentences to Ask for and Give Directions
  7. Six Expressions You Might Need in Case of an Emergency
  8. Five Flattery Phrases
  9. Ten Useful Phrases to Go through Language Problems
  10. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn Spanish

Log

1. Ten Basic Expressions

Preparing To Travel

Let’s start from the beginning. It’s practically impossible to have a proper conversation without using any of these basic expressions, so you’re going to need them. If you already know them, don’t worry; you can skip this section! And keep in mind that to hear these Spanish travel phrases with pronunciation, as well as more Spanish words and phrases, you can visit our vocabulary lists on our website.

1- Hola

As most of you might already know, Hola means “Hello.” It’s by far the most commonly used greeting in Spanish and can be used at any time of the day.

If you would like to learn more ways of greeting someone, you can check out our article How to Say Hello in Spanish.

2- Gracias

Once again, this is one of the most common Spanish words. It means “Thank you” and it’s obviously a basic word in many conversations. We would like our tourists to be polite, so we hope you use it a lot!

3- De nada

Now you know how to say “Thank you,” but do you know what to say after someone thanks you in Spanish? De nada literally means “Of nothing” and it translates to “You’re welcome.”

4-

In our first list of basic expressions in Spanish, we can’t forget to include words like “Yes” and “No.” Again, you probably already knew that means “yes,” but here it is just in case!

5- No

This is clearly one of the easiest travel phrases in Spanish for most of you. No in Spanish means “no.”

6- Lo siento

Lo siento is one of the most common ways of saying “I’m sorry” in Spanish and you can use it the majority of the time when you wish to apologize to someone. But if you would like to know what the most appropriate expression is for different situations, feel free to read our article on How to Say “Sorry” in Spanish.

7- No hablo español

If you don’t feel comfortable enough speaking Spanish yet, it might be useful for you to be able to say “I don’t speak Spanish.” If you want to apologize for not speaking Spanish, remember that you can combine it with the previous expression on the list: Lo siento, no hablo español.

8- Me gusta

Whenever you want to express that you like something, you can say Me gusta. If you want to be specific and say what it is that you like, you can add a verb in its infinitive form, a noun, or a pronoun.

Example: Me gusta bailar.
Translation: “I like dancing.”

Example: Me gustan los helados.
Translation: “I like ice cream.”

9- No me gusta

If you don’t like something, all you need to do is add no just before me gusta.

Example: No me gusta correr.
Translation: “I don’t like running.”

10- Por supuesto

The last expression on this list might not be as important as the rest, but it’s still good to know. Por supuesto means “of course.”

2. Nine Simple Conversation Phrases

Survival Phrases

Besides the basic expressions we just saw, there are a few sentences you might need to know so that you can have a basic conversation when you meet someone for the first time. These are often included in some of the first lessons when you start learning a language, but they’re always good to review.

You might want to take a look at our Top 10 Sentence Patterns for Beginners in case you’re not too familiar with them yet.

1- ¿Cómo te llamas?

One of the first questions you might ask someone you just met is “What’s your name?” This is one of the key Spanish travel phrases you should know, especially when it comes to forming relationships while in Spain.

2- Me llamo Ana / Soy Ana.

Obviously, if you learn how to ask what someone’s name is, you also need to know how to reply! Two of the most common ways of saying “My name is…” are Me llamo… or Soy… followed by your name. The last one only means “I’m…” but just like in English, it’s still an option.

3- ¿Cuántos años tienes?

This is another common question: “How old are you?” Interestingly, when we talk about our age in Spanish, we use the verb tener, which means “to have.” This means that the literal translation to this question is “How many years do you have?”

4- Tengo 25 (veinticinco) años.

As mentioned above, the literal translation to this answer is “I have 25 years.” Of course, it translates to “I am 25 years old.”

If you’re not yet comfortable with numbers in Spanish, we have you covered: check out our Numbers in Spanish article.

5- ¿De dónde eres?

This question means, “Where are you from?” Because people are normally curious when they hear a foreign accent or language, it tends to be heard quite frequently when someone’s traveling.

6- Soy de Australia / Soy australiano/a.

There are two different ways of replying to the previous question, and they’re very similar to what you would say in English. Soy de Australia means, “I am from Australia,” and Soy australiano (or australiana) means “I’m Australian.”

To learn more nationalities in Spanish, take a look at our Spanish Vocabulary for Nationalities.

7- ¿Dónde vives?

And finally, here’s our last basic question. ¿Dónde vives? means “Where do you live?”

8- Vivo en Londres

As you might expect, this sentence is the answer to the previous question. Vivo en Londres means “I live in London.” We chose this city because its name is a bit different than it is in English.

Now you might be wondering if all cities have different names in Spanish. Well, luckily, this doesn’t always happen, but it does happen sometimes. Normally, when they’re not that easy to pronounce for Spanish speakers, the names will be changed. Here’s a list of Names of World Cities in Spanish that might help you.

9- ¿Me puedes sacar una foto?

This sentence isn’t as important as the rest, but it’s still really useful to know when you’re traveling. If you travel solo and your parents want to see how you’re doing on your travels, but you’re not a big fan of selfies, you’re going to have to ask someone to take a photo of you.

The way of asking “Could you take a photo of me?” in Spanish is ¿Me puedes sacar una foto?

Of course, if you’re traveling as a couple or even with a group, you might still want to ask a local to take a photo of you. You can ask this question in the plural by saying: ¿Nos puedes sacar una foto?

For a few more useful questions, take a look at our Top 15 Spanish Questions You Should Know for Conversations.

3. Nine Basic Spanish Phrases for Travel

Airplane Phrases

Let’s get to more specific and useful Spanish travel phrases. Regardless of where you’re traveling, you’ll be taking cabs, trains, or buses. This is why we’ve listed a few sentences you might need if you take any of these means of transportation.

In each of these examples, we’ve marked in bold the most important part of the sentence. So, if you need to use any of these essential Spanish travel phrases for transportation, you’ll use the part in bold and change the rest of the sentence whenever you need to.

1- Three Sentences You Will Need When You Take a Cab

  • ¿Dónde puedo coger un taxi?
    Translation: “Where can I take a cab?”
  • Me puedes llevar a la calle San Juan, ¿por favor?
    Translation: “Could you take me to Saint John’s Street, please?”
  • Al aeropuerto, por favor.
    Translation: “To the airport, please.”

2- Three Sentences You Will Need When You Take a Train

  • Dos billetes para ir a Pamplona, por favor.
    Translation: “Two tickets to go to Pamplona, please.”
  • Un billete de ida y vuelta a Madrid, por favor.
    Translation: “One round-trip ticket to Madrid, please.”
  • ¿En qué andén se coge el tren R5?
    Translation: “On which platform can I take the R5 train?”

People

3- Three Sentences You Will Need When You Take a Bus

  • ¿Me puedes avisar cuando lleguemos al Museo del Prado?
    Translation: “Could you let me know when we arrive to the Museo del Prado?”
  • ¿Dónde me bajo para visitar la catedral?
    Translation: “Where do I get off to visit the cathedral?”
  • ¿Qué autobús tengo que coger para ir a Valencia?
    Translation: “What bus do I need to take to get to Valencia?”

4. Seven Sentences You Might Need When Shopping

Basic Questions

No matter what kind of trip you’re on, you’ll need to buy something at some point. It could be food, clothes, medicine…who knows. We’ve put together a few sentences you might need in order to buy something in Spain. These may be more advanced Spanish phrases for travel, but you can definitely master these with enough practice!

1- ¿Cuánto cuesta?

When we’re shopping, we sometimes need to ask about the price of a product, more often than not due to misplaced price tags. This is why asking “How much does this cost?” is such an important question to know. Obviously, the answer to this question is even more important. Here’s an example of how a conversation might go:

Example:
A: Perdona, ¿cuánto cuesta esta chaqueta?
B: Cuesta 35 (treinta y cinco) euros.

Translation:
A: “Excuse me, how much does this jacket cost?”
B: “It costs 35 euros.”

In case you skipped the simple conversation section in this article, we’ll remind you once more that if you want to know more about numbers in Spanish, you can check out our Numbers in Spanish article.

2- ¿Qué me recomiendas?

This question means, “What’s your recommendation?” and you might need to use it when you’re not sure what to get.

For example, one thing we’re really proud of in Spain is our jamón. You might want to try it when you visit Spain, but when you come to our supermarkets or restaurants and see all the different kinds we have, you might be confused.

In our example, because we’re asking for a specific recommendation, we’ll add a noun—the thing we’re interested in—after qué. This is optional except when what you’re referring to isn’t that obvious.

Example:
A: Qué jamón me recomiendas?
B: Este es buenísimo y no es muy caro.

Translation:
A: “What ham do you recommend?”
B: “This one is really good and it’s not too expensive.”

Ham

3- Quiero cambiar dólares a euros.

When traveling, you might need to exchange your currency for the local one, which in this case is the Euro. Specifically, the translation of this sentence is, “I want to exchange dollars for euros.”

For more information on talking about money or currency in Spanish, you might find it useful to check this vocabulary list of Words Related to Trade.

4- ¿Cómo puedo conseguir un descuento?

You might not be able to use this one as often as the other sentences on this list, depending on where you are, but it’s still good to know how to ask the question, “How can I get a discount?”

5- ¿Tienes esta camisa en otro color?

In case you see a shirt you like, but you can’t stop thinking that it would look better in a darker color, you might want to know how to ask ¿Tienes esta camisa en otro color? which means “Do you have this shirt in a different color?”

Other similar questions you might need to ask include asking for a different size. Here’s an example:

Example:
A: Perdona, ¿tienes estos pantalones en una talla más grande?
B: Lo siento, solo tenemos esta talla o una más pequeña.

Translation:
A: “Excuse me, do you have these trousers in a bigger size?”
B: “I’m sorry, we only have this size or a smaller one.”

6- ¿Se puede pagar con tarjeta?

You’ll never have to ask “Can I pay by card?” in a big supermarket, but it might be helpful if you’re buying something in a small store, or in a local market.

Girl

7- ¿Dónde hay un cajero?

In case the answer to the previous question is “No” and you currently don’t have any cash on you, you’re going to need to ask where the nearest ATM is. The way to ask this is ¿Dónde hay un cajero?

If you think you might have trouble understanding the possible answers to this question, keep reading this article!

5. Nine Sentences You Might Need in a Restaurant

Chef Cooking

When it comes to Spanish travel and tourism vocabulary, we think that restaurant words and phrases just about top the list.

In this section, we’ve included a few sentences you’ll need in a restaurant. However, if we started listing all the vocabulary you would need to order food, we would be here all night long, so this is why we recommend our video All Food and Restaurant Phrases You Need. In this video, Rosa will explain everything you need to know about food in general, and also about Spanish food.

1- Mesa para dos, por favor.

Unless you’re at a fast-food restaurant, normally one of the first things you’ll have to tell the waiter is how many people will be eating, so that they can pick the right table for you. This situation can take place in a few different ways.

For example, the waiter might ask you as soon as you walk in how many people there will be. There are a few ways they can ask you this question, but the one thing we know for sure is that it will include the word cuántos, which means “how many.” He could ask ¿Cuántos son? which means “How many are you?” or ¿Mesa para cuántos? which means “Table for how many?” among others. If you’re asked this question, you can just say the number, or the magic sentence in the title.

There’s a second way this could happen: the waiter might count how many people he sees before asking that question. For example, if he counts four people, he might directly ask: ¿Mesa para cuatro?, which means, “Table for four?” If he gets the number right, you can just reply . If he gets it wrong, you can correct him with the right number.

Finally, the third way this situation could go. You could be faster than the waiter and say Mesa para dos, por favor, which means “Table for two, please.” We previously said this is a magic sentence; let us explain why. If you’re still nervous whenever you need to speak Spanish and you didn’t understand what the waiter said to you, they’ll completely understand if you just say these words. Just like that, you’re in! Now let’s get you ready for what comes right after that.

2- ¿Cuál es el menú del día?

It’s common for Spanish restaurants to have a special menu for each day. Before deciding what you want to order, you can ask them ¿Cuál es el menú del día? which means “What’s the menu of the day?”

If you don’t like the special menu, don’t worry, because they’ll always have more options on the regular menu.

3- Por favor, ¿me tomas nota?

It’s quite likely that the waiter will approach you after you’ve been deciding what to get for a while. But in case you’re getting hungry and the waiter hasn’t asked what you would like to eat yet, when you see him you can ask him Por favor, ¿me tomas nota? which translates to “Can you write down my order, please?”

4- ¿Qué van a tomar?

Once the waiter has approached your table, you’ll be asked what you would like to order. It’s common for waiters to use the formal usted instead of , so the sentence we’ve suggested, ¿Qué van a tomar?, uses that form.

Another similar question the waiter might ask you is: ¿Ya han decidido qué van a tomar? which means “Have you decided what you’re going to have?”

Notice that both examples are in the plural. If you were eating by yourself in the restaurant, the waiter would ask ¿Qué va a tomar? instead.

Waiter

5- Yo tomaré…

Of course, if you’re eating in a restaurant, you need to know how to tell your waiter what you would like to eat. Here’s an example of how to order your food in Spanish.

Example: Yo tomaré las costillas de cerdo con ensalada.
Translation: “I will have the pork ribs with salad.”

6- ¡Camarero/camarera!

If you need to call the waiter for any reason, unless you know his or her name, you’ll have to say “Waiter!” or “Waitress!” This is one of the many reasons why you should know how to say it in Spanish. If your server is a girl, you’ll have to say ¡camarera!, and if it’s a man, you’ll say ¡camarero! If you feel like that’s a bit too rude for you, you can also say Perdona, which means “Excuse me.” Here’s an example that we hope you won’t need:

Example: ¡Camarero! ¡Hay un pelo en mi sopa!
Translation: “Waiter! There’s a hair in my soup!”

7- ¿Algo más?

This question means, “Anything else?” and might be asked after you’ve ordered your food and the waiter wants to make sure that you’ve finished.

The answer to this question, if you have in fact finished ordering, could be No, eso es todo, which means “No, that is all.” If you still want to order something else, you can of course say , followed by your next order.

8- Tengo alergia a…

For people with allergies, it’s important to be able to let the waiter know about it. The way to say, “I’m allergic to…” is Tengo alergia a

Example: Tengo alergia a los cacahuetes.
Translation: “I’m allergic to peanuts.”

You might also want to ask if a specific dish contains an ingredient in particular.

Example: Perdona, ¿la crema de calabaza lleva lactosa?
Translation: “Excuse me, does the pumpkin soup contain lactose?”

To be even safer, you can check Spanish Materials and Resources from Food Allergy Research & Education for some help.

9- La cuenta, ¿por favor?

The last sentence on this list is what you might need to say last, before you leave. As you might have guessed, this is how to ask for the bill. This sentence means “The bill, please?” and even though you could ask using a full sentence instead, this is all you’ll need.

6. Nine Sentences to Ask for and Give Directions

We’re sure you knew this section would come. After all, learning directions are some of the most essential travel phrases in learning Spanish and we don’t want you to get lost when you visit our beautiful country. But if you do, we want to help you find your way.

Here are some sentences you might need if you’re lost or can’t find your destination. Because these sentences have quite simple meanings, we don’t think you’re going to need anything but their translations.

People

1- Estoy perdido.

Translation: “I’m lost.”

2- ¿Dónde está la estación?

Translation: “Where is the station?”

3- ¿Cómo se va a la Plaza Mayor?

Translation: “How can I get to the Main Square?”

4- ¿Dónde está el baño?

Translation: “Where is the bathroom?”

5- Está aquí mismo

Translation: “It’s right here.”

6- Está detrás de este edificio

Translation: “It’s behind this building.”

7- Ve/gira hacia la derecha

Translation: “Go/turn to the right.”

8- Ve/gira hacia la izquierda

Translation: “Go/turn to the left.”

9- Ve recto

Translation: “Go straight.”

7. Six Expressions You Might Need in Case of an Emergency

We really hope you never need to use any of these expressions, but they’re important and need to be included in this article. Just in case, here are some emergency expressions.

1- ¡Ayuda!

Translation: “Help!”

2- ¡Necesito ayuda!

Translation: “I need help!”

3- Llama a una ambulancia.

Translation: “Call an ambulance.”

4- ¿Hay algún médico?

Translation: “Is there any doctor?”

5- Llama al 112 (cien doce)

Translation: “Call 112 [the emergency number].”

6- He perdido la cartera/pasaporte.

Translation: “I’ve lost my wallet/passport.”

8. Five Flattery Phrases

Whenever you travel to a different country, locals love hearing that you’re having a good time on your trip and that you’re enjoying the country. If you want to criticize something, be careful and gentle, because as they say, you can criticize your own country as much as you want, but if a foreigner does it, they’re wrong. So if anyone asks you, try to focus on the positive side!

Here’s a few basic phrases you could use to express what you like about your trip, as well as a couple more you might need when you meet a local.

1- Me gustan los españoles.

Translation: “I like Spaniards.”

2- Me gusta la comida española.

Translation: “I like Spanish food.”

3- Me encanta España.

Translation: “I love Spain.”

4- Muy amable, gracias.

Translation: “Very kind, thank you.”

5- ¿Tienes Facebook o Instagram?

Translation: “Do you have Facebook or Instagram?”

9. Ten Useful Phrases to Go through Language Problems

World Map

Some of the most important Spanish travel phrases may be those that will help you overcome language barriers. So we want to have you covered in case you have trouble understanding someone or don’t feel too confident speaking Spanish. Just calm down and remember that you’re still learning and that we’re here to help you. The next few expressions are some of the most useful Spanish words for tourists, so pay attention.

1- ¿Hablas inglés?

Translation: “Do you speak English?”

2- No te entiendo.

Translation: “I can’t understand you.”

Girl

3- No lo sé.

Translation: “I don’t know.”

4- ¿Me lo puedes repetir?

Translation: “Could you repeat that?”

5- ¿Puedes hablar más despacio?

Translation: “Could you speak slower?”

6- No hablo español.

Translation: “I don’t speak Spanish.”

7- ¿Cómo se dice esto en español?

Translation: “How do you say this in Spanish?”

8- ¿Cómo se pronuncia esta palabra?

Translation: “How do you pronounce this word?”

9- Escríbelo, por favor.

Translation: “Write it down, please.”

10- ¿Lo puedes deletrear?

Translation: “Could you spell it?”

10. How SpanishPod101.com Can Help You Learn Spanish

Now that we’ve reached the end, we realize you’re probably thinking that these are too many expressions for you to learn straight away. We’re afraid you’re going to have to do some studying, but hey, we promise it’s going to be totally worth it! When you start learning a language, there’s nothing like the feeling of starting to understand and being understood. And we’re sure you see now that the travel phrases in Spanish language learning are so useful!

At SpanishPod101.com, there’s so much more you can learn, no matter what your level is. And now, with our guide of Spanish phrases for travelers and our Don’t Travel Without Knowing These Top 10 Verbs list, you can go anywhere in Spain. Be sure to check out all of our resources, so that you can master the language and culture while having fun!

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