a / al - When to use

Discussion in 'Spanish-English Vocabulary / Vocabulario Español-Inglés' started by iKwak, Aug 31, 2004.

  1. iKwak New Member

    How do you choose when to use a and al?

    I think al is the masculine singular and a is the feminine singular.
  2. bofico Senior Member

    Austin, Texas
    I Can't figure out the question.

    if it's prepositions you're talking about,

    a is a


    al is a + el, or al

    a la playa = to the beach


    al baño [a + el baño] = to the bathroom
  3. el alabamiano Senior Member

    Well, you're right in a sense. Always contract a & el to make al. All others are not contracted, including male words in the plural. The same goes for de & el (del).

    Voy al mercado. (el mercado (market))
    Voy a la tienda. (the store)
    Conozco a los Smith. (the Smiths)
    Busco a la secretaria del señor Sánchez.
  4. el_novato

    el_novato Senior Member

    let me try

    al is used like a contraction for "a el". According el alamabiano comment.

    Voy a el mercado = Voy al mercado.

    It is usual to say "Nos vemos al rato = See you later" , another expressions for "see you later" nos vemos luego, te veo, etc ...
  5. LadyBlakeney

    LadyBlakeney Senior Member

    You are quite right, El_novato. In Spain we say "Nos vemos dentro de un rato", but I guess "al rato" is correct and used in Spanish America. See, I learned something new!
  6. el_novato

    el_novato Senior Member

    Hello. In México there are a lot of expressions. Nos vemos al ratón. Nos vemos al rato is used too in México.
  7. el_novato

    el_novato Senior Member

  8. Woman1969

    Woman1969 Member

    Valencia, Venezuela
    Venezuela (Spanish, English and some French)
    Hello all,

    Here in my country we use both of them, dentro de un rato and al rato.


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