PARA vs POR :twisted:! Probably one of the hardest things to learn for students of Spanish as a foreign language. Don’t you think? This is probably because both por and para, can mean «for» in English and cause quite a bit of confusion for non-native Spanish speakers. Nevertheless, notice that these two prepositions can be translated into Spanish, not only as «for,» but also as by, on, though, because of, in exchange for, in order to, and several other prepositions. So let’s start seeing POR vs PARA.
PARA vs POR, that is the dilema!
1. Basically, «POR» is used to express movement through time or space. This can be:
1.1 A physical transition such as traveling
Viajé por América. (I traveled through America.)
1.2 An exchange of objects
Pagué 50€ por este bolso. (I paid 50€ in exchange for this handbag.)
1.3 A duration of time
Tengo que trabajar por doce horas hoy. (I need to work for twelve hours today.)
1.4 A motivation/reason for doing something
Aprendí español por mi trabajo. (I learned Spanish because of my job.)
2. And «PARA» is generally used to convey destinations or endpoints. These can be:
2.1 Physical locations
Salgo para Nueva York mañana. (I leave for New York tomorrow.)
2.2 People (recipients)
Este regalo es para mi novia. (This gift is for my girlfriend.)
El jefe necesita el informe para mañana. (The boss needs the report for tomorrow.)
Ahorra mucho para comprar una casa. (He saves a lot in order to buy a house.)
3. There are also many expressions that are used with por and para. Some of the most common are:
|para siempre||forever||por ejemplo||for example|
|para variar||just for a change||por favor||please|
|para que||so that/in order that||por ciento||percent|
|por supuesto||of course|
POR y PARA practice and quizzes
Now you practice everything you have learned with the quiz below. Remember to contact your tutor with any questions about PARA vs POR. Don’t you have any Spanish tutor yet?
I hope that if you now have to choose between using PARA vs POR it will be easier for you to decide. In any case, you can click on the link above to access a video where you will learn more about the subject.