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A Newbie’s Information to Telling Time in Spanish

Regardless of the place you’re or what language you communicate, the clock retains ticking. When you’ve realized depend in Spanish, with the ability to inform time will allow you to schedule duties and make social plans with individuals. It’s additionally straightforward to be taught the fundamentals, even should you don’t have an intensive understanding of the language. By the tip of this publish, you’ll have the important talent of with the ability to inform time in Spanish!

For a useful follow-up, check out our publish on Spanish days of the week to be taught much more about setting dates. Or, try our information on the 100+ commonest Spanish phrases

When you’re serious about going past the fundamentals, try Rosetta Stone. Its distinctive Dynamic Immersion methodology might help you be taught Spanish intuitively, and each unit is damaged into bite-sized classes you can simply match into your every day schedule. Plus, you may select between Latin American or European Spanish to make sure you grasp the nuances of every! 

The right way to ask for the time in Spanish

Asking for the time in Spanish is straightforward. Simply memorize one or each of those phrases and also you’re set:

  • ¿Qué hora es? = What time is it?
  • ¿Tiene la hora? = Do you will have the time?

If you ask somebody for the time, it’s possible you’ll get a normal reply slightly than a selected one. In instances the place it’s good to know exactly what time it’s, you may add “precisely” to your query:

  • ¿Qué hora es exactamente? = What time is it precisely?
  • ¿Tiene la hora exacta? = Do you will have the precise time?

The right way to inform the time in Spanish

Listed below are two widespread methods you may categorical time to different individuals. Be aware that while you’re speaking in regards to the time you’re referring to the hour, or hora, which is a female noun, so you must use the articles la and las as a substitute of el and los.

Hour and minutes

Essentially the most simple method to categorical time is by giving the hour and the minutes. To do that, you’ll use a type of the verb ser (“to be”).

For many occasions, you must use the plural type son adopted by the plural article las. For example:

  • Son las cinco. = It’s 5 o’clock.
  • Son las doce. = It’s twelve o’clock.

If you’re speaking about one o’clock, midday, and midnight, you’ll as a substitute use the singular type of ser, which is es. For one o’clock, you’ll comply with that with the singular article la. Check out these examples:

  • Es la una. = It’s one o’clock.
  • Es mediodía. = It’s midday.
  • Es medianoche. = It’s midnight.

Right here’s a fast record of phrases you need to use to inform time in Spanish when it’s on the hour: 

Spanish English
Es la una.  It’s one o’clock. 
Son las dos.  It’s two o’clock. 
Son las tres.  It’s three o’clock. 
Son las cuatro.  It’s 4 o’clock. 
Son las cinco.  It’s 5 o’clock. 
Son las seis.  It’s six o’clock. 
Son las siete.  It’s seven o’clock. 
Son las ocho.  It’s eight o’clock. 
Son las nueve.  It’s 9 o’clock. 
Son las diez.  It’s ten o’clock. 
Son las as soon as.  It’s eleven o’clock. 
Son las doce.  It’s twelve o’clock. 

To incorporate minutes, merely add y (“and”) after the hour after which say the quantity for what number of minutes have handed, like so:

  • Son las ocho y veintiséis. = It’s 8:26.
  • Es la una y catorce. = It’s 1:14.

“Quarter previous,” “half previous,” and “quarter to”

Like in English, it’s additionally widespread in Spanish to divide an hour into quarters and halves. You’ll be able to categorical time on this manner utilizing the phrase media for a half-hour and cuarto for a quarter-hour. Listed below are some examples:

  • Es la una y media. = It’s half previous one.
  • Son las as soon as y cuarto. = It’s a quarter previous eleven.

If it’s 1 / 4 to the following hour, you’ll as a substitute say that it’s the following hour menos cuarto, like this:

  • Son las tres menos cuarto. = It’s a quarter till three.

The right way to use “menos” to inform time 

When a time falls from 31 to 59 minutes previous the hour (i.e. 10:39PM), you will have two choices. The primary is to simply say the hour and minutes, like in these examples:

  • Son las diez y treinta y nueve. = It’s 10:39.
  • Es la una y cincuenta y dos. = It’s 1:52.

The second is to say what number of minutes there are till the following hour, much like how you’ll say menos cuarto to imply it’s 1 / 4 to the following hour. 

  • Son las as soon as menos veintiuno. = It’s twenty-one till eleven.
  • Son las dos menos ocho. = It’s eight till two.

12-hour clock vs. 24-hour clock

Whereas it’s widespread in English-speaking nations to make use of a 12-hour clock, many Spanish-speaking nations use a 24-hour clock (also called army time). Relying on the nation, they could use:

  • each a 12-hour clock and 24-hour clock interchangeably 
  • a 24-hour clock when writing and a 12-hour clock when talking
  • the 24-hour clock solely

When you’re saying the time in Spanish whereas utilizing a 12-hour clock, know that Spanish doesn’t have excellent equivalents to a.m. and p.m. As an alternative, you may add one in every of these phrases after the time.

Time Spanish English
Midnight to midday de la mañana within the morning
Midday to six p.m. (or till sundown) de la tarde within the afternoon/night
6 p.m. (or after sundown) to midnight de la noche at night time

Listed below are a few instance sentences:

  • Son las ocho de la noche. = It’s eight o’clock at night time.
  • Es la una y treinta de la mañana. = It’s 1:30 within the morning.

Occasions of day in Spanish

Many Spanish audio system will make plans round normal durations of the day as a substitute of actual occasions. If you’re setting a gathering in Spanish, these occasions of day are helpful to know:

  • mañana = morning
  • tarde = afternoon/night
  • noche = night time
  • amanecer = daybreak
  • mediodía = midday/noon
  • anochecer = nightfall
  • medianoche = midnight
  • madrugada = midnight to daybreak
  • hora del desayuno = breakfast time
  • hora de almorzar = lunchtime
  • hora de cenar = dinnertime
  • hora de acostarse = bedtime
  • siesta = naptime*

*Siesta sometimes lasts from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m., although this could differ relying on the nation and area.

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