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Spanish beginner - What are the differences between Latin American Spanish and the Spanish of Spain?

Hey There,

Can you simply list the differences between them?

And 2), I noticed that some people who speak Spanish are also native speakers of Catalan, Why?

And 3), What are the differences between Latin American countries speaking Spanish?

I heard some people says the Spaniards of Buenos Aires are the destroyer of Spanish language, otherwise, some people says they make Spanish more colorful, why?


I just started to learn Spanish less than one month, and for now, I am enriching my vocabulary. I have already started to notice a few differences. E.g. El billete and El boleto

But, Some of native spanish speaker who are learning Mandarin says "If you can not distinguish between them directly, this proves your don't have basic listening skills."

(What the Eff!)

Does this mean that it is difficult to pointed out and explain the differences precisely? So he doesn't want to pointed them out?


Based on experience of speak my mother tongue - Mandarin of Chinese. I don't want to be some Chinese learners who speak Mandarin sometime speak standard Mandarin better than me, and sometime speak with strong accents of some specific regions.

And, I heard one of Laowai says "I started learning Mandarin in Taiwan, Sorry for my sissy accent." After all, I don't wanna explain that.


So, I want to learn Spanish based on a particular form, a particular accent, throughout my learning time. But, first of all, I need try to fully understand the differences between them. Then, I can decide.


Thank you so much.

Sep 30, 2016 1:10 PM
Comments · 8

Other than vocabulary differences between countries (even among Latin American countries), the main difference is that Spain uses the vosotros form (informal plural) and Latin America does not (they use ustedes -- third person plural). 

I learned with materials from Spain first, and I'm glad I did because I'm aware of the form and know how to use it when I need to.

All this being said, think about where you will travel to most or with whom you'll be using the language and learn that form/accent. In the end, you'll likely use a variety of materials anyways.

I feel that the Colombian accent is one of the most neutral and easy to understand, and I've heard other learners say the same.

Personally, I find the Argentinian accents and Cuban accents to be a bit stronger than all other accents, but if you choose to learn one of these, you will still of course be understood.

October 1, 2016
When you have more practice, you can recognize much better the difference between different accents. Basically in all Latin American countries we have different accents, but in general are the same words, unlike the Spanish of Spain and Argentina.
The Spanish as such comes from Spain, so we can say that this is the most correct way to speak, but yet the most used is from Latin America, so if you are learning I recommend you look a Latin tutor. Regards
October 1, 2016
But like Catalan, Tibetan is a language and not a dialect. I haven't got a definition on me but languages and dialects aren't the same. There might be a crossover but they're not the same. Thinking about China, Tibetan and Uighur, for example, are languages whereas say, Sichuanhua is a dialect.
September 30, 2016
I agree with David's points, and the Catalan language is spoken in these regions of Spain: Catalonia, Valencia, and the Balearic Islands in Spain. Catalonia is part of the kingdom of Spain, thus the formation of the Catalan language, but Catalan and Spanish are very similar the differences that David stated such as the "z" sound is in Catalan but not Spanish. If you go to a Catalan speaking region of Spain and forget sounds and words in Catalan they know how to speak Spanish too, so ll you need to know in Spain is Spanish you don't really have to worry much about Catalan as every Catalan speaker also speaks Spanish. I've been to a couple Spanish speaking countries and the people of Spain spoke really fast Spanish to me whereas the people of Venezuela and Columbia spoke slower Spanish to me so I could understand them better. The differences of Catalan and Spanish are kind of like the differences between the German spoken here in Germany and the German spoken in Austria, not a big deal so in Spain all you really need to know is Spanish, you can learn Catalan once you get there if you like but it's not a problem if you don't.
September 30, 2016
Thank you so much for what you said, Sir. It's very useful to me. I want to learn speak spanish like a baby, this way is slower for adults. so i think the first choice is very important.
September 30, 2016
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Fan YANG
Language Skills
Chinese (Mandarin), English, Russian, Spanish
Learning Language
English, Russian, Spanish