Ir vs. Venir
- Using Ir to Express Movement
- Forming a Construction with Ir to Express Movement
- Differences in Usage Between Verbs Ir and Venir
- Differences in Constructions with Ir and Venir
How would you say that you are going from your home to someplace else in Spanish? The verb ir has different uses in Spanish, and one of them is expressing movement from one place to another. The verb venir seems to act in a similar way. So in this article, let's discuss the differences between the verbs ir and venir in this context.
Voy a la universidad.
I'm going to college.
Using Ir to Express Movement
Rule 1. The two main uses of the verb ir are talking about the future and expressing movement - for example, to say that we are going to go to a certain place.
Voy a la cafetería, ¿quieres venir?
I'm going to the cafeteria, do you want to come?
Forming a Construction with Ir to Express Movement
Rule 2. First, you need to conjugate the verb ir in the correct form:
|Subject pronoun||Verb ir|
|él, ella, usted||va|
|ellos, ellas, ustedes||van|
Rule 3. Then, add the preposition a,
Rule 4. Finally, add the place you are going to, always including the definite article.
Nosotros vamos a la tienda.
We are going to the store.
When we use a proper name such as the name of a city or country, the definite article is omitted.
Carla va a Cancún porque le encanta la playa.
Carla is going to Cancun because she loves the beach.
Rule 5. It is important to remember that when the preposition a is accompanied by a masculine singular definite article it is contracted to al. A similar pattern occurs with the preposition de + el, which will contract to del.
Manuela y Gaby van al museo.
Manuela and Gaby go to the museum.
This does not apply to the other articles.
Differences in Usage Between Verbs Ir and Venir
The verbs ir and venir both refer to moving from one place to another. However, they express different functions and should not be used interchangeably. The use will depend on where the speaker is located.
Rule 6. The verb venir is used if another person is coming to where you are. In other words, it involves a movement that ends at the point where the speaker is located. In English, a similar verb would be to come.
Mi hermano viene de Lima a visitarme a México.
My brother is coming from Lima to visit me in México.
Rule 7. In contrast, ir is used if you or other people are going to the place of destination. In other words, the movement consists of moving away from the point where the speaker is.
Mi familia y yo vamos a ir a Lima a visitar a mi hermano.
My family and I are going to Lima to visit my brother.
Differences in Constructions with Ir and Venir
Rule 8. As mentioned before, the verb ir is accompanied by the preposition a. On the other hand, the verb venir is usually accompanied by the preposition de.
Alex va al cine.
Alex is going to the movies.
Alex viene del cine.
Alex comes from the cinema.
Rule 9. As a reminder, here are the present conjugations of the verbs ir and venir.
|él, ella, usted||va||viene|
|ellos, ellas, ustedes||van||vienen|
Daniela _________ a Colombia a visitar a su hermana.