Saludos: Tú vs Usted

Presentation Tutorial: Formal Questions


What does all of this mean for us? Well, it means, quite simply that now we have to learn the same questions again because now, due to the issue of "formality", some of the words slightly change.

It will be relatively easy to pick up on these slight changes, but you have to keep in mind that they are very important in Spanish and you will be misinterpreted if you do not make the changes as necessary. We will get into the more technical explanations later in the course, but for now, you simply need to remember that the two "you" words in Spanish require other changes in the sentence as well.

Let's see, do you remember how we asked someone in Section A:

  • "What is your name?" (¿Cómo te llamas?)
  • "Where do you live?" (¿Dónde vives?)
  • "Where are you from?" (¿De dónde eres?)
  • "How are you?" (¿Cómo estás?)

Those four questions are going to be our focus in Section B so that we can learn how to ask the same questions, but this time to a different person--to "usted". Can you see the difference between the following and the questions we learned in Section A?

¿Cómo está Ud.?
sick woman

¿Dónde vive Ud.?

¿Cómo se llama Ud.?
shaking hands

¿De dónde es Ud.?

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