5 common mistakes English speakers make while learning Spanish
As you become more comfortable and fluent in Spanish, you need to remember that the ultimate goal is to think in the new language. Of course, this requires a lot of practice and exposure, but in the meantime, be aware that oftentimes we translate directly from English; and as you will see, this doesn’t always work.
- Uno otro – translating “another” literally
Quiero una otra cerveza. ❌
Quiero otra cerveza. ✅
- Visita con – Preposition misuse
In Spanish, we use the personal “a” when visiting people
Visito con mis amigos. ❌
Visito a mis amigos. ✅
- Saber vs conocer
When it comes to people or places, remember the verb conocer is used.
Yo sé Carlos. ❌
Yo conozco a Carlos. ✅
- Yo sé cómo – translating literally “how”
Yo sé cómo nadar. ❌
Yo sé nadar. ✅
- Por vs para
The use of prepositions is always tricky in any language. In Spanish, this is especially true with por and para since they can have different meanings depending on the context. Generally speaking, a common mistake is to use para for a length of time instead of por
Yo camino para tres horas. ❌
Yo camino por tres horas. ✅
By Guillermo Benavides
Photo by Saul Mercado on Unsplash
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