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How to say ‘What time is it’ in Spanish

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How to say ‘What time is it’ in Spanish

what time is it

Now that I have already explained the verb to be, that is, Ser, it’s time to learn how to say ”What time is it’ in Spanish. To say What time is it we need two of the six forms of the verb ser, that of the third person singular, which is es, and that of the third person plural, son.

To start with, here’s the question to ask ‘What time is it’ = ¿Qué hora es? As you can see, no subject pronoun is used since these tend to be omitted. So we can affirme that What time is translated as Qué hora plus es.

Secondly, for the answer, this is the rule:

  • Es la una = it’s one = una is singular, so es must be singular too.
  • Son las dos = it’s two = Spanish, unlike English, requires a plural verbal form, son, in all times except one.

Something you must pay attention to is the use of article the, la or las, in feminine, as hora in Spanish is considered feminine. You will have to use la when it’s one, and las for the rest of the times, which is another reference to singular and plural.

O’clock in Spanish is translated as “en punto” but as it happens in English, it can be left out.

If you want to clarify whether we are referring to a.m. or p.m., in Spanish we say “de la mañana” for a.m. and “de la tarde” for p.m., for example: son las 7 de la tarde = it’s 7 p.m. and son las 10 de la mañana = it’s 10 a.m.

QUARTER:

  • Es la una menos cuarto = it’s quarter to one.

Rule: Es + la + hour + menos + cuarto

There is a difference in the order between the two languages. In Spanish we say the hour first and second, the minutes, whereas in English, first the minutes and second the hour.

And menos = to.

HALF:

  • Son las cuatro y media = it’s half past four.

Rule: Son + las + hour + y + media

Y = past

OTHER TIMES:

  • Es la una y diez = it’s ten past one.
  • Son las 12 y veinticinco = it’s twenty-five past twelve.
  • Son las 3 y veinte = it’s twenty past three.
  • Es la una menos veinticinco = it’s twenty-five to one.
  • Son las ocho menos diez = it’s ten to eight.
  • Son las once menos cinco = it’s five to eleven.

Do you think you need to revise numbers in Spanish? Here you can do it: numbers in Spanish.

Now that you know how to say ‘What time is it’ in Spanish, I recommend practising the time by means of the following exercise.

¿Qué hora es?…

 

  1. 12:40 ____________________________________________________________
  2. 16: 50 ____________________________________________________________
  3. 17:30 ____________________________________________________________
  4. 14:10 ____________________________________________________________
  5. 13: 25 ____________________________________________________________
  6. 19:55 ____________________________________________________________
  7. 09:05 ____________________________________________________________
  8. 11: 15 ____________________________________________________________

KEYS:

Es/ son …

 

  1. 12:40 ____la una menos veinte________________________________________
  2. 16: 50 ___las cinco menos diez_______________________________________
  3. 17:30 ____las cinco y media_________________________________________
  4. 14:10 ____las dos y diez____________________________________________
  5. 13: 25 ____la una y veinticinco________________________________________
  6. 19:55 _____las ocho menos cinco_____________________________________
  7. 09:05 _____las nueve y cinco_________________________________________
  8. 11: 15 _____las once y cuarto_________________________________________

Right, that’s all for today. If you think this post could be of interest for your mates, please share it on social media.

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