Pedir & Preguntar - Spanish Verbs

In this section, you’re going to learn even more useful words, including either, or, that, which, but, and neither. You may not realize how often you use these words in English without even thinking about them. They’re extremely important if you want to express yourself clearly and understand what others are saying to you. So let’s get into it!

Asking for something in Spanish

You may have noticed that the verbs pedir and preguntar both mean the same thing: to ask. Just like the twin verbs ser and estar (to be), and saber and conocer (to know), the verbs pedir and preguntar have the same definition but completely separate usages in Spanish.

You are going to ask a lot of questions if you travel to a foreign country. You’ll need to ask where things are, how much things cost, and how to say new words in Spanish. The verb that describes all these “asking” situations is preguntar.

The Ordinary Asking Word: PREGUNTAR

Por ejemplo:

ask something

You can also use the preposition por with preguntar to form the expression preguntar por. This can mean to ask for or about, or to ask on behalf of someone.

Por ejemplo:

ask about food

A Closer Look at PEDIR

Say that you don’t want information. What you really need is for someone to do something for you. You need the bellhop to bring your bags, you need the front desk to set a wakeup call, or you need that shirt in a different size. When you are asking for something or asking someone to do something, you will use pedir.

Remember that pedir means to ask for. As a result, you don’t need to add the word for after the verb.

Por ejemplo:

ask for license

In the next section we'll talk about How to Ask the Question, "What?"


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