PUEDO TENER is WRONG! Here’s How to Ask for Things in Spanish.

PUEDO TENER is WRONG! Here's How to Ask for Things in Spanish.

¿Puedo tener una servilleta? ¡No! ¡No la puedes tener! (Literally, “Can I have a napkin? No! You cannot have it!) 

Please don’t say that in a Mexican restaurant… Because it doesn’t mean “Can I have” in Spanish; it’s just… wrong. 

Say this and your foreigner status is discovered immediately! So, how to ask for things in a restaurant or somewhere else? I am Paulísima, Spring Spanish teacher, and here are 5 chunks to ask for things in Spanish! 

1. Para mí

Para mí. (For me.) This is perfect for ordering in any kind of establishment when you’re in the company of other people.  

¿Ya están listos para ordenar? 
(Are you ready to order?) 

Para mí, la ensalada provenzal, por favor. 
(For me, the provençal salad, please.) 

¿De qué hay?
(What kind is there?)

De tripa, de suadero, longaniza, campechanos, de enchilada.
(Tripe, suadero (Mexican beef cut), longaniza (Mexican sausage), campechanos (mixed longaniza and suadero), spicy beef.) 

Para mí, dos de tripa bien doradita y uno campechano, por favor. 
(For me, 2 of crispy tripe and 1 campechano, please.) 

2. Me podrías traer 

  • ¿Me podrías traer? (Could you bring me…?) 
  • ¿Me podrías traer una servilleta, por favor? (Could you bring me a napkin, please?) 
  • ¿Me podrías traer un vaso de agua, por favor? (Could you bring me a glass of water, please?) 

3. Me podrías dar 

Me podrías dar. (Would you give me?) ¿Me podrías dar like, por favor? (Could you give me a like, please?) Yeah, in Mexico when we like a video, we “give it a like”. Así que por favor, ¿me podrías dar un like? (So please, could you give me a “like”?) 

How are you liking this video so far? Let me know in the comments, and if you are or if you’re not… Let me know what I can do to make it better. 

¿Me podrías dar…? (Would you give me…? Or Would you get me…?) This one is to be used when ordering food in a restaurant or when you’re buying something that you can’t reach for yourself. 

¿Me podrías dar dos tacos al pastor, por favor? 
(Would you give me 2 pastor tacos, please?)

¿Me podrías dar un vaso de agua, por favor?
(Would you give me a glass of water, please?)

¿Me podrías dar un encendedor?
(Would you give me a lighter?) 

4. Me das

Me das. (Can you give me.) Este chunk es perfecto para usar en un lugar informal. Como en una taquería en la calle. Aquí estoy usando la conjugación informal del verbo dar. (This one is perfect to use in a casual setting. Like in a taco stand down the street. Here I am using the informal conjugation of the verb “dar”.) 

Actually, I’m using the informal conjugation in all the chunks that you’re learning today. A chunk is a pre-made phrase that native speakers use all the time. Because they’re pre-made, you don’t have to think about conjugations when you learn the whole phrase “me das”, because it is a chunk. 

You can just memorize, so remembering grammar stuff doesn’t slow you down as you’re trying to speak. Learning by chunks is a great way to speed your way into fluency. To learn more about how to do just that, click on the link in the description. There, you can get a free copy of our Essential Spanish Chunking Kit, with the most important Spanish chunks that you will need all the time.

5. Me pasas

Me pasas… This is one is more like “can you pass me” but it works better than you saying “¿Puedo tener?” (Can I have?) in a context of being at the table. 

If you’re new here, do subscribe to the Spring Spanish channel and also, if you’re an intermediate Spanish speaker, subscribe to my other channel, Spring English. I bet you’re going to find that content useful, too! 

  • ¿Me pasas la sal, por favor? (Can you pass me the salt, please?)
  • ¿Me pasas la salsa verde, por favor? (Can you pass me the green salsa, please?)

You’ll use this phrase exactly the same way you would use “Can you pass me…”, like when you can’t reach something that’s too high:

  • ¿Me pasas esa caja, por favor? (Can you pass me that box, please?) 

6. Summary

Remember we have: me das, me podrías dar, me podrías traer, me pasas y para mí. (give me, could you give me, could you get me, pass me, and for me.)  

  • Me das una coca light, por favor. (Give me a diet coke, please.)
  • ¿Me podrías dar un vaso de agua, por favor? (Could you give me a glass of water, please?) 
  • ¿Me podrías traer una servilleta, por favor? (Can you get me a napkin, please?)
  • ¿Me pasas la salsa, por favor? (Can you pass me the salsa, please?)
  • Para mí, diez tacos de suadero, por favor. (For me, 10 suadero tacos, please.) 

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.