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How to Politely Address Someone in Spanish

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Infographics of Polite Addressing In Spanish

Polite Spanish Introductions

Can I have…?

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If you are in a situation where you need some kind of help, it is important that you know how to ask for things. When you have a problem, a very natural way to ask for things that you need in Spanish is using ¿Me da…? (Can I have ?…).

Por favor, ¿me da el número de la policía? Can I have the phone number for the police, please?
Por favor, ¿me da un informe para mi seguro?Please can I have a report for my insurer?
Me da un cubo para recoger el agua?Can I have a bucket to catch the water?

  • Querido Antonio =Dear Antonio

  • Querida Maria =Dear Maria

  • Queridos Antonio y Maria =Dear Antonio and Maria

  • Estimado Sr. Manuel =Dear Mr. Manuel

Do you have…?

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Tienen…? (Do you have…?) is the right verb form to use whenever asking if something is available in a shop, office or other establishment.

Tip: Use Puede…? or Podría…? (Can you…? or Could you…?) to ask if someone can do something for you.

Tienen pinzas para recargar la batería? Do you have jump leads? 
Oiga, perdone, tienen oficina de objetos perdidos? Excuse me, do you have a lost property office? 
Por favor, ¿tienen este documento en inglés? Excuse me, do you have this document available in English?

  • Estimada Sra. Francisco =Dear Mrs./Ms. Francisco

  • Estimada Srta. Martina =Dear Miss Martina

  • Muy señor mío =Dear sir

  • Estimado señor =Dear sir

  • Muy señora mía =Dear madam

  • Estimada señora =Dear madam

  • Muy señores míos =Dear sirs, dear sirs/madams

  • Estimados señores =Dear sirs, dear sirs/madams

Can you…?

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Use Puede…? or Podría…? (Can you…? or Could you…?) to ask if someone can do something for you.

Por favor, puede ayudarme? Can you help me, please?
Puede llamar a la policía? Can you call the police?
Me podría mostrar cómo funciona la ducha? Could you show me how the shower works?
Podría recomendarme un abogado? Could you recommend a lawyer?

To resolve your problem or difficulty you’ll need to be able to say what you want to do or what you’d like to happen to get it fixed. To do this, you can use either quiero or quisiera (I’d like). They are both from the verb querer. For more information on querer

I’d like to…

  • Por favor, ¿puede ayudarme? =Can you help me, please?

  • Quiero hablar con el encargado. =I’d like to speak to the manager.

  • Quiero denunciar un robo.  =I’d like to report a theft.

  • Quiero hacer una llamada.  =I’d like to make a call.

  • Quisiera llamar a mi hija. =I’d like to phone my daughter.

  • Quisiera ver a un asesor fiscal. =I’d like to see a tax consultant.

I don’t want to…

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I don’t want to…

No quiero dejar aquí el coche. I don’t want to leave my car here.
No quiero molestarle demasiado. I don’t want to put you to a lot of trouble. 
No queremos ir al hotel sin nuestras maletas. We don’t want to go to the hotel without our luggage.

  • No quiero dejar aquí el coche. =I don’t want to leave my car here.

  • Prefiero hablar con alguien que sepa inglés.  =I’d rather talk to someone who speaks English.

  • Prefiero pedirle al técnico que venga mañana.  =I’d rather ask the engineer to come tomorrow.

  • Si es posible, preferimos leer los documentos en inglés.  =We’d rather read the documents in English, if possible.

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