Using POR or PARA is a big dilemma for most students of Spanish as a foreign language since both prepositions can often be translated as FOR.
We have selected for you a quite good video in which some explanations are given on how these two prepositions are used, making a comparison between Spanish and English grammar. I think it can be especially useful.
So, prepare with a pencil and paper to start watching the video, remember to stop it as many times as necessary to make the annotations that you can review later. You can also repeat the examples that you hear out loud to work on pronunciation, which is called “matar dos pájaros de un tiro” (to kill two birds with one stone, although we say “shot”)
Por vs Para: differences
POR vs PARA examples
I am sure that if you have followed the recommendations in the video carefully, now you will know the reasons why in the following examples we have used the prepositions por or para:
Estudio español para viajar por América del Sur (I study Spanish to travel through South America).
Te enviaré el informe por email (I will send you the report by email).
La tarea debe estar terminada para el viernes (The task must be finished by Monday).
He comprado este libro para María (I have bought this book for María).
Cambié mi bicicleta por una moto de segunda mano (I traded my bike for a second hand bike).
El año año viajamos por Andalucía (Last year we travelled through Andalusia).
This is only the tip of the iceberg, there are more cases in which you must choose between one preposition or the other. In addition. these prepositions appear in many idiomatic expressions, which do not follow any rule. Here are some examples, but we will see this in a future post. What do you think?
¡Por última vez! (For the last time!).
Apostar por algo (to bet on).
Cada dos por tres (every five minutes).
De acá para allá (up and down).
De un día para otro (from one day to the next).
El uno para el otro (made for each other)