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Five Spanish Verbs to Use Instead of the Boring Ones You Learned

Trade these five verbs for ones Spanish speakers actually use. You’ll sound more like a native speaker starting today, guaranteed.



Use these five verbs instead of the ones you learned in a traditional class to sound like a more natural Spanish speaker.



1. Tomar instead of beber


  • ¿Quieres algo para tomar?

  • Do you want something to drink?

Tomar is used for many things, including to drink, to take medications (tomar medicamentos), to take a photo (tomar una foto), and to have breakfast (tomar desayuno), among others.


2. Pasear instead of caminar

  • Vamos a pasear en el parque.

  • We're going to take a walk in the park.

You can also use dar un paseo to mean taking a walk without a real end point in mind, as in strolling.


3. Platicar instead of hablar or conversar

  • Tengo que platicar contigo sobre qué pasó hoy.

  • I have to tell you what happened today.

Note that only in Mexico do they use platicar.


4. Parecer instead of pensar

  • Me parece que ese chico necesita ayuda.

  • I think that guy needs help.

Parecer can also mean to seem. "Parece que ese chico necesita ayuda" means "it seems that guy needs help." And it means to look like someone, as in "pareces a tu papa," which means "you look like your dad."


5. Dar clases para enseñar

  • Damos cinco clases gratuitas de español la semana que viene

  • We're teaching six free Spanish classes next week.

Dar means to give, so you're basically saying "to give classes."



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Jackie Donaldson is the founder and director of Amidon Studios Language Studies. She started Amidon Studios in 2017 after managing a language institute in Lima, Peru for six years. She's taught students from all over the world while living in Peru, Mexico, and the U.S. When she's not working or studying, you'll find her gardening, playing with her cat Frankie, swimming, baking, and exploring the globe.


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