Diccionario Real Academia Espaola is regarded as the standard dictionary of the Spanish language. The first edition of this dictionary was published in 1780, and the most recent edition was published in 2014, with over 93,000 entries and 195,000 definitions.

That is a challenging number for the average language learner.  The good news is that most Spanish speakers only use a small percentage of that number in everyday conversation. Knowing just 5,000 Basic Spanish words can make you feel at ease and confident in almost any situation.

Learn basic Spanish

We have compiled a list of frequently used Spanish words and phrases that you will find useful as you learn the language. Take these as your building blocks. You will use these on a daily basis and in a variety of settings, for both formal and informal interactions. So, let’s get started!

Basic Spanish words

ClaroOf course
GraciasThank you
De nadaYou’re welcome
¿Por qué?Why?

Formal Spanish greetings

Hola, mucho gustoHi, nice to meet you
Buenos díasGood morning
Buenas tardesGood afternoon
Buenas nochesGood night
Hola, ¿cómo le va?Hi, how have you been?
Hola, un placerHi, it’s a pleasure [to meet you]
Encantado/aDelighted [to meet you]
Hello in Spanish

Casual Spanish greetings

¿Qué onda?What’s up? 
¿Qué hay de nuevo?What’s new? 
¿Qué tal?What’s up?/How are you? 
¿Cómo va todo?How’s everything going? 
Hola, qué gustoHi, what a pleasure [seeing you]
¡Cuídate mucho!Take care! 
¡Hasta luego! See you soon! 
Build Spanish vocabulary

Basic Spanish questions

¿Cómo te llamas?What is your name?
¿De dónde eres?Where are you from?
¿Dónde vives?Where do you live?
¿Qué haces ahora?What are you doing right now?
¿Cómo hiciste eso?How did you do that?
¿Cuál es tu película favorita?¿Cuál es tu libro favorito?​​¿Cuál es tu podcast favorito?¿Cuál es tu canción favorita?What is your favorite movie? What is your favorite book? What is your favorite podcast? What is your favorite song?
¿Te gusta _______?Do you like…?
¿Y tú?And you?

Basic Spanish responses

Every question demands a response in return. Here are some common responses:

Me llamo…My name is…
Soy…I am…
(Yo) soy de…I am from…
(Yo) vivo en…I live in…
Mi película favorita es…My favorite movie is…
Me gusta…I like…
Hay…There is…

Asking for clarification in Spanish

¿Cómo?I beg your pardon? 
¿Puedes repetir eso, por favor?Can you repeat that, please? 
¿Qué significa eso?What does that mean? 
Más despacio, por favor. Slow down, please. 
No entiendo.I don’t understand. 
No sé. I don’t know. 

Basic Spanish words related to people

Mejor amigo/amigaBest friend
Compañero/a de claseClassmate
Compañero/a de trabajoCoworker

It is also important to learn business Spanish words to use in professional settings. You need to be prepared for such conversations if you plan to do business in Spain or any Spanish-speaking region in the world. Now, let’s move towards some basic Spanish verbs:

Basic Spanish verbs

EstarTo be
TenerTo have
HacerTo do/make
GustarTo like
SaberTo know
QuererTo want
EntenderTo understand
DarTo give
LlamarTo call
ComerTo eat
BeberTo drink

Spanish untranslatable words

  • Ataraxia: a mood of total quietness and peace
  • Petricor: the smell of rain touching the ground
  • Efímero (m)/Efímera (f): something fleeting or short-lived, ephemeral
  • Perenne: something everlasting, perennial
  • Inefable: something that cannot be expressed or described
  • Pirulí: a cone-shaped sugar candy
  • Ojalá: perhaps, or “God willing.”
  •  Enamorado: the male form of “the state of being in love.”
  • Pavonearse: to strut around like a peacock
  •  Vergüenza ajena: to feel embarrassed for someone

The basic Spanish words and phrases listed above will help you get through any conversation.

Make Spanish notes

Learn Spanish words with italki

If you want to take your learning to the next level and be ready to hold conversations by deepening your understanding and expanding your connections, explore italki. With italki, you will never have to memorize a vocabulary list. Rather, you will learn the contextual use of words through practical exercises and real-life situations.

With italki, you can learn Spanish online and get a lifetime learning opportunity under the supervision of the best tutors and engaging reading content.

Tutors with extensive experience:  Almost all of italki’s tutors are native speakers. You can meet with the tutor of your choice to discuss your goals and aspirations. It only takes a few clicks to find an online Spanish teacher on italki. You can find a list of tutors on the website and select the one that best suits your needs.

Find Your Perfect Teacher

At italki, you can find your Spanish tutor from all qualified and experienced teachers. Now experience the excellent language learning journey!

Book a trial lesson

Flexible learning schedule: You can choose your own learning schedule without interfering with your daily routine. Consult your tutor, create a learning schedule, and stick to it to achieve your goals.

Conversational learning mode: The tutors at italki strongly believe in conversational learning mode. Conversational learning mode is critical to ensuring quality learning and knowledge retention. Select a conversational Spanish tutor and schedule regular sessions that include interactive quizzes and exercises.

Additional learning content: Additional learning materials, practical exercises, and real-life scenarios are available to help you improve your Spanish speaking and writing skills. Maintain consistency and adhere to the instructions given during the lessons.

Customized lesson plan: The best feature of italki is its customized lesson plans. You can tailor your lesson plans to your specific learning goals and objectives. Following the learning style and pattern that works best for you is the best practice.

How do I get enrolled?

Visit the website, create a profile, and enter the necessary information. Fill in your preferred style, schedule, and so on. The option to ‘find the instructor’ will be visible in the upper right corner.

Select a tutor. You can also schedule a trial lesson to evaluate your overall learning experience. The trial session is offered at a discounted rate. If the teaching method meets your needs, create a learning schedule and objectives with your tutor.

You will learn Spanish quickly if you listen to your tutor’s constructive feedback and track your progress regularly.

italki Intro Page

Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What are some Basic Spanish weather words?

  • Caliente: Hot
  • Frío/ fría: Cold
  •  Soleada/soleado: Sunny
  • Nevada/nevodo: Snowy
  • Ventosa/ventoso: Windy

Q. What are some Basic Spanish time words?

  • Hoy: Today
  • Mañana: Tomorrow
  • Ayer: Yesterday
  • Antes: Before
  • Después: After
  • Ahora: Now

Q. How many Latin words are there in the Spanish dictionary?

A.  Almost 75% of the words are Latin in the Spanish dictionary.


Mastering Basic Spanish words is essential to hold daily life conversations. You must also know the Spanish curse words to avoid any embarrassing situation while being in Spain. It is recommended to use flashcards to learn Spanish words and phrases. Keep these flashcards safe and refer to them whenever required.

Seeking professional guidance is essential to master a foreign language. Book a tutor through italki and speed up your learning process. The tutor will also let you work harder on your weaker areas. Book your lessons today and become a fluent Spanish speaker. 

Want to learn a language at italki?

Here are the best resources for you!