Basic Spanish phrases work as a foundation for everything you learn!
Not to mention, they’re very helpful in conversation and they allow you to express yourself when you don’t have a rich vocabulary yet.
If you’re serious about learning Spanish, starting with basic phrases is a great idea and it’s super important to do.
Not only because they help you feel confident and comfortable!
But when you’re just getting into the learning process they give you a wide range of Spanish conversation topics to work with.
Basic Spanish Phrases
So, what are basic Spanish phrases? Well, basic Spanish phrases refer to the simple phrases that are constantly used in real conversations.
That includes greetings, saying goodbye, introductions, polite phrases, common questions, and everything else people use to make casual conversation and communicate daily.
We’re already familiar with basic phrases because we use them in our mother tongue all the time, which is why it’s so important to begin our Spanish learning journey with these phrases.
Because they are so simple, they’re a manageable challenge for beginners and they’re also fun to learn!
All you have to do is get started.
Greetings and Farewells in Spanish
Usually, greetings and farewells are a good place to start.
Knowing how to greet people is super important because it allows you to be educated and show respect to others.
There are different methods you can use to learn Spanish fast or improve your vocabulary without having a real conversation.
However, greetings are the most common way to start a conversation with anyone, so they’re useful for all kinds of scenarios.
Of course, there are many variations of greetings and farewells; some of them can be used in any situation while the use of others will depend on the time of the day.
To help you out, see these common greetings and farewells in Spanish:
- ¡Hola! – Hello!
- ¡Buenas! (informal) – Hi!
- Buenos días – Good morning
- Buenas tardes – Good afternoon
- Buenas noches – Good evening or Good night
- ¡Bienvenido! – Welcome!
- ¡Qué gusto verlo! – It’s nice to see you!
- Encantada o encantado – Charmed
- Chao (informal) o Adiós – Goodbye
- Hasta luego – See you later
- Hasta pronto – See you soon
- Hasta mañana – See you tomorrow
- Nos vemos – See you
- Que tengas un buen día o Que te vaya bien – Have a good day
- Cuídese o Cuídate (informal) – Take care
- ¡Qué gusto verte! – I’m glad to see you!
- Tanto tiempo sin verte – Long time no see
- Nos estamos viendo… – I’ll see you around
How Are You in Spanish
Once you greet someone, the conversation needs to continue somehow. Especially when you have an objective for the interaction.
That’s where the question “how are you?” comes in. Asking this question shows you’re interested in the other person and you want to know how they’re doing or how they’re feeling.
After all, whether it is someone you haven’t seen in a while, or not, it is still polite to ask how they are.
Asking this question allows you to show consideration for the other person and you’re also letting them know they can open up with you and talk about anything.
As most Spanish books will teach you, there are many different ways to ask this question, some are formal and others are informal.
Their use depends on the context and the person you’re speaking to, so make sure you use the right variables.
- ¿Cómo estás? (informal) o ¿Cómo está usted? – How are you?
- ¿Qué tal? (informal) – What’s up?
- ¿Cómo te va? – How are you?
- ¿Cómo te ha ido? – How have you been?
- ¿Qué pasa? (informal) – What’s up?
- ¿Qué cuentas? – What’s up?
People will also ask you this question too, so you need to be able to answer.
Here are the most common Spanish phrases to say how you are:
- Estoy estupendo/a – I am great
- Estoy muy bien – I am very well
- Estoy más o menos – I am so-so
- No estoy muy bien – I’m not so well
- Estoy mal – I am unwell
- Estoy fatal – I am terrible
- Estoy un poco cansado – I am a little tired
- Estoy exhausto – I am exhausted
- Estoy enfermo – I am sick
Where Are You From in Spanish
When you meet someone new, asking “where are you from?” is a great way to get to know them better and continue the conversation.
Once you greet someone, ask their name, introduce yourself, and show interest in them, you can talk about many other things.
Asking people where they’re from and talking about where you’re from is very common and it’s a polite way to continue getting to know each other.
As you may have guessed, there are different ways to ask this question.
Some are informal and some are formal, so make sure you use the right one depending on the person and the context.
- ¿De dónde eres? (informal) o ¿De dónde es? (formal) – Where are you from?
- ¿Dónde vives? – Where do you live?
Answer the question yourself and say where you’re from, you can use:
- Yo soy de… – I am from…
- Somos de… – We are from…
- Vivo en (país o ciudad)… – I live in (country or city)…
Asking About Jobs, Interests, and Hobbies in Spanish
When you’re trying to get to know someone, talking about jobs, interests, and hobbies is a great way to learn more about them.
It’s also a great way to talk about yourself and the things you like so you can find something in common.
Here are some basic Spanish phrases so you can ask about jobs, interest, and hobbies, and also a few phrases to help you answer the same questions:
- ¿Qué te gusta hacer? – What do you like to do?
- ¿Tienes un pasatiempo? – Do you have a hobby?
- ¿Cuáles son tus pasatiempos? – What are your hobbies?
- ¿Qué haces en tu tiempo libre? – What do you do in your free time?
- ¿Cómo te ganas la vida? – What do you do for a living?
- ¿En qué trabajas? – What’s your job?
- ¿Te gusta tu trabajo? – Do you like your job?
- ¿Qué te gusta de tu trabajo? – What do you like about your job?
- ¿Te gusta leer? – Do you like to read?
- ¿Qué tipo de libros te gusta? – What kind of books do you like?
- ¿Qué tipo de música te gusta? – What kind of music do you like?
- Me gusta o no me gusta… – I like or I don’t like…
- Me encanta… – I love…
- Mi pasatiempo favorito es… – My favorite hobby is…
- Trabajo en…– I work at/in…
Asking for Information in Spanish
Learning how to ask for information using basic Spanish phrases is key because it will help you a lot when you need to know something.
You can use these phrases to ask where something is, how much something costs, to ask the date or the time, and anything else you may need.
If you plan on traveling to a Spanish-speaking country, knowing how to ask for information is one of the most important things.
In English, we use WH question words to ask for information.
In Spanish, there’s also a great variety of question words you can use.
Here’s a list of the most common ones:
- ¿Qué…? – What…?
- ¿Cómo…? – How…?
- ¿Cuándo…? – When…?
- ¿Cuánto…? – How much…?
- ¿Dónde…? – Where…?
- ¿Quién…? – Who…?
- ¿Por qué…? – Why…?
- ¿Cuál…? – Which…?
To help you out a little bit, here are some basic Spanish phrases using these question words:
- ¿Qué hora tienes? – What time is it?
- ¿Cuánto cuesta eso? – How much is that?
- ¿Quién eres? – Who are you?
- ¿Qué es esto? – What is this?
- ¿Qué fecha es hoy? – What is today’s date?
- ¿Hablas inglés? – Do you speak English?
- ¿Dónde está el baño? – Where is the bathroom?
- ¿Qué dice ahí? – What does it say?
- ¿Qué significa eso? – What does that mean?
- ¿Cuándo abren? O ¿Cuándo cierran? – When do you open? Or When do you close?
Thank You and Polite Spanish Phrases
Courtesy words and polite phrases are also important to learn because they allow you to show respect for others.
If you make a mistake or someone has done something nice for you, you should be able to answer and show politeness.
Here are some of the most common basic Spanish phrases for politeness:
- Gracias – Thank you
- Muchas gracias – Thank you very much
- Estoy agradecido/a – I’m grateful
- De nada – You’re welcome
- Perdón o Lo siento – I am sorry
- Disculpa (informal) o Disculpe (formal) – Sorry
- Con permiso – Excuse me
- Perdona (informal) o Perdone (formal) – Excuse me
- No era necesario – You didn’t have to
- Lo aprecio – I appreciate it
Improving Spanish Fluency
Basic Spanish phrases are incredibly useful and they’re commonly used in everyday conversation.
That’s why they’re such a good starting point for beginners!
This will allow you to strike up a Spanish conversation and practice your language skills with anyone even if you’re only getting started!
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