So, you’re in a Spanish-speaking country and have just done a small favour for someone.
Maybe you’ve helped a neighbour carry their bags a short distance. Perhaps you’ve helped someone cross the street. You hear them say gracias, which you already know means “thanks” in English.
How are you supposed to respond?
Since etiquette can go a long way and can help you show that you’re happy to have helped, you’ll want to say “no problem” in Spanish (or you’re welcome).
If you’re not sure how to say it, this guide covers the many options you have to help you put a smile on the faces of those you’ve helped. Let’s take a look.
How do you say “no problem” in Spanish (and how shouldn’t you say it)?
The phrase you’ll need to say “no problem” in Spanish is:
No hay problema.
Be careful not to use the term “no problema”, which doesn’t exist in Spanish and is also grammatically incorrect since all negated phrases in Spanish should contain a verb, and this one doesn’t.
The same thing applies to the false cognate “no problemo”.
If only it were as simple as sticking an -o on the end of “problem”, right? But “no problem” also doesn’t exist and shouldn’t be used either.
When you say no hay problema, don’t forget that problema is not a feminine noun – it’s masculine.
It’s easy to get confused because el problema ends in an -a.
But, just like the masculine noun el agua, it’s one of those irregular nouns with a feminine -a suffix but is masculine and is preceded by the masculine articles el and un.
Other Spanish phrases for saying “no problem” in Spanish
You might also be curious to know which other phrases you can use to say “no problem” in Spanish.
To give some variety to your etiquette, look at the table just below to find several ways to say “no problem” in Spanish.
|Spanish phrase||Literal English translation||Spanish context: formal/informal|
No se preocupe
No te preocupes
Don’t worry yourself
Don’t worry yourself
No se procupe (formal)
No te preocupes (informal)
|No pasa nada||Nothing happens||Informal|
|Ningún problema||No problem||Informal|
|De nada||Of nothing||Informal|
|No hay de que||There is nothing of that||Formal|
|No importa||It doesn’t matter||Formal|
What does no se preocupe mean?
Although this Spanish phrase translates to English as “don’t stress/don’t worry”, you sometimes hear it in formal situations in which one person is saying “no problem” or “there’s no issue”.
For example, if you wanted to exchange your jumper for a different style, but the style you like isn’t in stock, the owner of the retail store might say:
Disculpe señorita, pero no tenemos ese estilo de jersey en stock
You might then reply by saying no se preocupe, to the store owner:
No se preocupe, buscaré otro estilo.
But note that even though the formal se is used in this phrase, there is an informal te version available.
Use no te preocupes when you’re talking to a family member or a child.
Using no pasa nada to say “no problem” in Spanish
The phrase no pasa nada usually is used when someone says lo siento or perdona (I’m sorry) to you.
If someone doesn’t realise you’re waiting in line at the post office and they cut in front of you, they might say:
Lo siento, no sabia que estabas esperando.
The above example is a typical moment where you could say no pasa nada to show that no harm was done.
Despite being frequently used in informal situations, you might rarely hear it in formal circumstances like the one mentioned above, mainly when someone’s addressing a younger person or a child.
But stick to no hay problema to be on the safe side when speaking to someone you don’t know.
How should you use ningún problema to say “no problem” in Spanish?
Not only could you add the negated verb no hay to the beginning of this phrase to give a little emphasis to your etiquette, but you can also use this phrase among friends to show how glad you were to do a favour for them.
For example, if you invite a friend to have a coffee with you in your local cafeteria, you might hear them say:
Gracias por invitarme.
And in response, you should say “no problem” in Spanish, like this:
¡No hay ningún problema!
Remember, if you’re writing this as a message and you want to emphasise your response, you could add an exclamation mark like the example above.
Just remember that Spanish always features an upside-down exclamation mark at the beginning of the phrase too!
Using de nada in Spanish
When compared to no hay ningún problema, de nada seems quite short.
That’s because this phrase is the short version of the words no hay nada de qué agradecerme or “there’s nothing to say thanks to me for”.
Be careful when using this phrase, not to get confused with the words por nada when visiting Spain.
This latter phrase is used in entirely different contexts. For instance, if you wanted to say that your hard work was ineffective, use por nada (for nothing).
De nada is acceptable for both informal and formal situations, so you’ll typically hear native speakers using it with friends and family or with colleagues, strangers or their bosses.
How should you use no hay de que in Spanish, and what does it mean?
Alternatively, you might choose to use the phrase no hay de que to say “no problem” in Spanish.
No hay de que means “there’s no reason to thank me/there’s nothing to thank me for”.
Use no hay de que in formal situations and think of it as a formal version of de nada.
For example, if you’re in the office and let someone pass through a doorway before you, they might say gracias, and you can respond with no hay de que.
How should we use no importa in Spanish, and what does it mean?
The phrase no importa means “it doesn’t matter” in English and should be used when you want to say “no problem” in Spanish.
This phrase is similar to the words no pasa nada and can be used in similar contexts.
For instance, if you’re running late to collect your children from school, you might say:
Lo siento, llegaré un poco tarde.
…To which the teacher will respond:
No importa, esperaremos hasta que vengas.
A similar phrase can be used in informal circumstances, which is a mí me da lo mismo, which means “it’s all the same to me”/“I don’t mind”.
For example, if your friend arrives late at the cinema and you miss the start of a movie, you might say:
No pasa nada, a mí me da lo mismo.
A mí me da lo mismo or a mí me da igual can also be used to say “I don’t care” in certain circumstances, so use the correct framing words (such as no pasa nada) before this phrase, and be mindful of your tone of voice when you use it.
What does tranquilo/a mean, and when should you use it?
Tranquilo/a translates to English in this context as “calm down” or “don’t worry”.
Use the version that ends in an -o when talking to men and the version that ends in an -a when talking to women.
For instance, if you’ve done a significant favour for someone by driving them to the hospital to have surgery, they might say muchísimas gracias.
Since they’re super grateful for your help and would be emphasising their gratitude, you can respond with tranquilo/a, no hay de que.
Don’t forget to say “no problem” in Spanish
The complete list of ways to say “no problem” in Spanish might seem a bit overwhelming at first, but if in doubt, you can always stick to no hay problema until you’ve begun to learn a few of the other ones here.
If you’re wondering how to memorise all of these, starting with flashcards is an excellent first step.
Since all of these roughly means “no problem”, instead of writing the translation on the back, you could note whether you should use them in formal or informal situations.
You could write a literal translation, too, if that helps you remember them.
Next, it’s essential to use them frequently and hear native speakers using these phrases in dialogues.
Use audio recordings first and then try to get some regular practice with a native Spanish speaker to learn these phrases thoroughly.
With practice and time, you’ll begin to use them naturally in your speech.
Are there any other tips you’d like to share for learning these Spanish phrases for “no problem?”
Share your advice in the comments section below!