The Spanish words para, porque and por are words that are commonly used wrongly especially by in-dividuals who are just beginning to learn the Spanish language and even those on the advanced levels. These words usually cause some confusion as to which one of them should be used to express the thought of the speaker in the sentence. Learning about the proper usage of these words in the Spanish language is one of the most difficult lessons for beginner Spanish students. To learn the proper usage of these words, it is important to learn about the rules on when and how to use these Spanish words.
When speaking the Spanish language, the word “para” is used when talking about the main objective of a certain action or object. The verb is then used in the infinitive form.
Para + Infinitive Verb
Example 1: La maleta se usa para viajar.
Translation: The suitcase is used for travelling.
Example 2: I leer libros para pasar el examen.
Translation: I read books to pass the exam.
In Spanish, “por” is used to refer to the specific reason behind an action or thought. When this kind of thought is expressed in a sentence using the word “por”, it must be followed by a noun.
Por + Noun
Example 1: Me encanta este restaurante ubicado por la comida.
Translation: I love this restaurant because of their food.
Example 2: Me gusta el helado por el sabor.
Translation: I like the ice cream because of the taste.
The last word is “porque” which is used when referring to the reason behind something. Instead of just using the infinitive form of the verb, the conjugation of the verb is used.
Porque + Conjugated Verb
Example 1: Me voy a dormir temprano esta noche porque quiero despertar mañana temprano.
Translation: I am going to sleep early tonight because I want to wake up early tomorrow.
Example 2: I comer verduras porque son saludables.
Translation: I eat vegetables because they are healthy.
These 3 Spanish words can be used to answer a question in several different ways.
Question: ¿Por qué quiere aprender español?
Translation: Why do you want to learn Spanish?
Answer 1: porque me gusta aprender nuevos idiomas
Translation: because I like learning new languages
Answer 2: because of my teacher
Translation: por mi maestro
Answer 3: para viajar a España en el futuro
Translation: for travelling to Spain in the future
Answer 4: porque me gusta español
Translation: because I like Spanish
Answer 5: por mi madre español
Translation: because of my Spanish mother
Answer 6: para poder hablar con fluidez en español
Translation: to be able to talk fluently in Spanish
The rules discussed above do not entirely cover all the rules pertaining to the proper usage of por, porque and para. These are just the basic rules that a beginner student in Spanish must follow to be able to converse well in Spanish. These basic rules are just meant to provide an idea on when and how to use these 3 important words in the Spanish vocabulary.