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39 Beginner Spanish Words And Phrases

In this short post, we are going to go over the most useful beginner Spanish words and phrases together. This includes first greetings, verbs, nouns, and adjectives you should learn.

At the end of the article, I wrote a practice conversation for you which uses many of these words and phrases to help you remember them.

As a fluent Spanish speaker who was a beginner just 3 years ago, I welcome you to the beautiful world of Spanish! Without any further ado, let’s get started!

Greeting Someone & Saying Goodbye In Spanish

These are the most common and practical greetings that you should learn in Spanish. Underneath each of them is a brief explanation so you can understand better exactly how they are used in everyday speech.

¡Hola! - Hello! 👋

Hola is a super commonly used word in Spanish, it’s just like when we say “hi” or “hello” in English.

¿Qué tal? - What’s up? 😺

This is exactly like the phrase “what’s up” in English, so it should be used in less formal situations - the same as you would use it in English.

¿Cómo estás? - How are you? 🤷‍♂️

This phrase is a literal translation of “How are you” - the only difference is that it changes depending on who you are talking to.

To simplify it:

When speaking to older people - ¿Cómo está?

When speaking to multiple people - ¿Cómo están?

¿Qué hay de nuevo? - What’s new? 👀

This phrase is a little bit more “native-like” because it’s not used as much, nor is it taught in schools usually. It literally means “what-is there-of-new?”.

¡Hasta luego! - Later! 🙋‍♂️

A simple phrase that is used a ton to say “bye” is “Hasta luego” - which means “until later”. This is probably the most common goodbye you’ll hear in Spanish-speaking countries.

Chiao - Bye 👋

Chiao, which has multiple different ways to spell it, is like the difference between “goodbye” and “bye”. It’s a bit less formal and more friendly.

Adiós - Goodbye 🙋

Everybody has heard “adiós”, but this word is used much less to say goodbye, there’s a certain dramatic vibe that comes with this word, almost like you might not talk again.

Nos vemos (luego/mañana) - I’ll see you (later/tomorrow) 🗣

Whereas in English we say “I’ll see you later” - in Spanish we say “We’ll see each other later”. Nos vemos luego/mañana is used often and can be used with anyone, young or old.

cartoon characters acting out the phrases that are in the previous section

Most Important Verbs In Spanish

These are the most common and useful verbs in the Spanish language. Underneath the first two, I put a tiny explanation so you can understand the difference between the words. As for the rest of them, they word the exact same as their exact translation does in English.

Ser - To be

Ser is one of two verbs that mean “to be”. Ser is used for more permanent characteristics such as names, a person's physical appearance, or place of origin.

Yo quiero ser profesor

(I want to be a professor)

Estar - To be

Estar is the second verb that means “to be” and it’s used for temporary things like emotional states and a person's location.

Estoy fuera de la escuela esperando

(I am outside of the school waiting)

Tener - To have

Yo tengo 3 gatos

(I have 3 cats)

Hacer - To do/make

No sé qué hacer…

(I don’t know what to do…)

Ir - To go

Hoy no quiero ir a la oficina

(I don’t want to go to the office today)

Decir - To say/tell

Quiero decirte una cosa

(I want to tell you something)

Ver - To see

No quiero verlo

(I don’t want to see it)

Saber - To know

Tú vas a saber pronto

(You’re going to know soon)

Querer - To want

Voy a querer dormir pronto

(I am going to want to sleep soon)

Poder - To be able to/can

No voy a poder superarlo

(I’m not going to be able to get over it)

Most Important Nouns In Spanish

These are some of the most important nouns to learn as a beginner in Spanish. In most conversations, at least 3 of these words will be used (if not all of them). Let’s take a look at them!

Spanish Word


La Persona 👨


La Vida 👨‍🌾


El Amor 😻


La Casa 🏡


El Trabajo 👷‍♂️


La Familia 👨‍👩‍👧‍👧


El Día 🌞


El Agua 🌊


Amigo/Amiga 👯


La Ciudad 🌃


La Cosa ⚱️


El País 🏳️


El Mundo 🌎


El Dinero 💵


La Comida 🌮


Most Important Adjectives In Spanish

If you learn all 6 of these adjectives you will have a basic ability to describe many things. Although there are only six, they are all extremely powerful and necessary words.

Spanish Word


Bueno/Buena 👍


Malo/Mala 👎


Pequeño/Pequeña 🤏


Grande 🙌


Viejo/Vieja 👨‍🦳


Nuevo/Nueva 👨‍🔬


Beginner Conversation To Practice With

Try and read this conversation out loud to yourself! Here is a basic conversation using some of the words you just learned.

John: Hola Kevin, ¿qué tal, cómo estás? 🙋‍♂️

(Hey Kevin! What’s up!? How are you!?)

Kevin: Estoy bien, John, y tú? ¿Qué hay de nuevo? 👀

(I am well, John, and you? What’s new?)

John: Voy a estar en México pronto, siempre quería ir a ese país 😎

(I am going to be in Mexico soon, I always wanted to go there)

Kevin: México!? ¡Qué bueno! Tendrás que mostrarme las fotos, ya quiero verlas 👍

(Mexico!? How good! You’ll have to show me photos, I already want to see them)

John: Lo haré Kevin, bueno, ya voy al trabajo, ¡nos vemos luego! 🤵‍

(I will Kevin, well, I am going to work now, we’ll see each other later!

Kevin: Sí, hasta luego hermano 🙋‍♂️

(Yeah, until then bro)

John: ¡Chiao! 👋



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