How To Say Thanks In Spanish (Quick Beginner's Guide)

  • Jada Lòpez
    Written byJada Lòpez
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How To Say Thanks In Spanish (Quick Beginner's Guide)

Though you might have learned in your Spanish course that gracias is the word you’ll need if you want to say ‘thank you’ in Spanish, are you aware that there are other ways to say it as well?

There are plenty of ways to express your gratitude in Spanish.

Whether you’re thanking someone for a present for your birthday or thanking them for giving you support and advice about a problem you’ve had, there’s a way to say ‘thank you’ in Spanish for any situation.

It’s always important to remember your etiquette and to be polite! 😊

So, if you’re looking for ways to show your appreciation for something and say it in Spanish, take a look at this quick guide.

How do we say ‘thank you’ in Spanish?

There are many ways to say ‘thank you’ in Spanish.

Here are a few examples of some variations of the standard gracias:

EspañolEnglish
GraciasThanks
Gracias por todoThanks for everything
Gracias a tiThanks, to you (informal)
Gracias a ustedThanks, to you (formal)
Muchas graciasThanks a lot
Mil gracias(lit.) a thousand thankyous
Muchísimas graciasThanks very much
Estoy tan agradecido por...I'm so grateful for...
Te doy gracias por...I give you thanks for...

Why is it important to say gracias and when should we use it?

Showing your gratitude for something someone has done for you is important, and that’s why you should always say gracias when someone helps you out or does a favor for you.

If you keep forgetting to say gracias, in the same way as in English, you will end up making a bad impression on those around you.

There are a few different contexts that require different ways to say ‘thank you’ in Spanish — keep reading for a few examples.

Using gracias in any situation

If you’re unsure whether the context requires gracias or something different, using gracias isn’t a bad idea as it’s appropriate in any situation:

¡Gracias por la ayuda!

Thanks for the help!

Gracias por su asistencia.

Thanks for your assistance.

Muchísimas gracias and mil gracias — adding oomph

Sure, you could stick to gracias, but certain contexts call for a little oomph, right?

What if you want to emphasise your appreciation? After all, some gestures deserve a ‘big thanks’. For example, there might have been an occasion where someone has driven 50 km to help you jumpstart your car — during their lunch break.

This clearly calls for a bigger acknowledgement.

To show your thanks, you’ll need to say muchísimas gracias, or mil gracias.

Muchísimas gracias, Carla. Puedo llegar a casa fácilmente ahora.

Thanks a lot, Carla. I can get home easily now.

Mil gracias por ayudarme. Ahora, puedo conducir a casa.

Thank you very much for helping me. Now I can drive home.

Do we use por or para with the word gracias?

Did you notice in the example just above that the sentence uses the word por, which means ‘for’?

This is the grammatically correct way to express thanks in Spanish — in other words, the word por usually follows the word gracias, or mil gracias, or even muchísimas gracias.

Why is this important?

In Spanish, there are two words that mean ‘for’. As we’ve mentioned, por, is one of these words.

The other one is para. We won’t go into too much detail here, but what you should try to remember as a Spanish beginner is that por is used more frequently than para and that por is always used when you’re giving thanks for something.

For more details on the differences between these words, check out our post on por vs para.

When to gracias a ti and when to use gracias a usted

Aside from the famous Spanish pop song Gracias a Ti (by Carlos Rivera) you’ll hear the phrase used frequently in a variety of different informal contexts.

Say you visit your in-laws and they invite you in for a coffee. When you’re leaving you might say gracias por el café.

In response, you’ll then hear them say gracias a ti por venir a verme.

Gracias a usted is the formal version of gracias a ti.

You’ll hear it in various contexts. When you go to the supermarket or the pharmacy and say muchas gracias to the cashier or the pharmacist, they’ll respond with gracias a usted.

And if you frequently go to the same pharmacy, and the pharmacist knows you very well, they might just use the informal gracias a ti.

Put your knowledge into practice: start using the Spanish equivalents of ‘thank you’

Now you know the many different ways to say ‘thank you’ in Spanish, it’s your turn to start using them!

Keep in mind the difference between thanking a friend and thanking a stranger and you’ll soon master how to say ‘thank you’ in Spanish in a variety of contexts.

We’ll leave you, now, with one final example of ‘thanks’ in Spanish, which is: gracias por leer este artículo!

Also check out my guide on how to say please in Spanish.


Got any other variations or ways to say ‘thank you’ in Spanish?

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Donovan Nagel
Donovan Nagel - B. Th, MA AppLing
I'm an Applied Linguistics graduate, teacher and translator with a passion for language learning (especially Arabic).
Currently learning: Icelandic
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