"I have to return home."

Translation:Tengo que volver a casa.

February 17, 2013



Why would it be "tengo que volver al casa" if I choose to use "casa" to mean "home"? Why wouldn't it be "a la casa," since "casa" is a feminine noun? I put that and it was deemed incorrect.

February 17, 2013


Well first of all, you wouldn't ever say " al casa " because al = a el and seeing as though casa is feminine it would be "a la casa". So that should be a hint that casa wouldnt be used in this case.

Secondly there is a difference between casa and hogar. Casa literally means house where as hogar litterally means home. Although a home can be at a house, it can also be in a cave, van, street, tent or appartment etc.

April 26, 2016


a casa & a la casa were both accepted.

June 26, 2013


Most people would translate a casa and al hogar as home and a la casa as to the house. That is because a casa, like home, assumes it is your house but a la casa does not. Hogar is, of course, a word meaning home and hearth.

September 20, 2017


Are sure it was not deemed incorrect because you used "casa" rather than "hogar?"

February 17, 2013


Nope - I used c a s a and it was correct

February 27, 2013


I think rspreng meant that CGiattino used the masculine 'al' in front of casa rather than hogar in their question, which would be wrong.

al hogar -or- a/a la casa

August 30, 2013


can you say: Tengo que regresar a casa

January 19, 2014


Yes. This is what I put. However, I'm not sure of the difference in regresar and volver.

May 3, 2017


From a google search: "They are rather interchangeable, with one key difference: The word 'volver' can be used to mean 'to repeat' or 'to ... again' which is not a meaning 'regresar' can take on." Seems like a satisfactory explanation to me

May 4, 2018


What about, " Yo tengo volver a casa"?

August 7, 2013


The expression "I have to/ he has to" is tengo que/ tiene que. Yo tengo volver a casa is "I have return to home"

August 9, 2013


That's exactly what I wrote and was marked incorrect. DL gave me "debo volver a mi casa" as the correct response. :-(

October 19, 2014


thanks for the clarification

August 9, 2013


I said "Tengo que volver a mi casa" and it was accepted!

June 6, 2014


Why doesn't 'necesito' work here?

October 29, 2013


I am confused also about when to use casa and hogar.

March 8, 2013


I suggest that 'a la casa' refers to a house. The 'a' is a preposition of movement. The 'la' is an indefinite article which means casa means 'a house'. On the other hand 'a casa' means movement toward a specific house that being 'home', For 'al hogar' it is 'a movement to a home'. It's just how I remember it so take it with a grain of salt.

September 15, 2013


I'd learned in school that "a casa" meant "to home", but that never really made sense 'til now! Thanks!

December 2, 2014


"Casa" is feminine....you can't say "al mi casa"

March 14, 2013


I left out the "que" and answered "Tengo volver al hogar." Instead of telling me I omitted the "que" it gave me "debo volver al hogar" without capitalizing it. Can someone explain this?

June 27, 2014


Steven, "tengo que" is "I have to", and "debo" is "I must".

February 11, 2015


I don't know how exactly explain that rule, but it's the same in portuguese, "tengo" will always require "que" following it, altough the verb deber has the same meaning, this one doesn't require "que", in the cases where you are talking about obligations.

June 27, 2014


Well, it seems like one of those language quirks, which are inevitable. They end up being part of the charm of a language eventually. But when Duo springs it on you, well, it's hard to keep up. Thanks for cluing me in, even if it is hard to give reason for.

June 27, 2014


I'm confused too. Casa is feminine. How can it be "al casa" when "al" is a contraction of "a el" . Why is "a la casa" incorrect?

March 20, 2013


It is now "a casa". I'm not sure why it's "al hogar" and "a casa" (and not "a la casa") but I'm guessing that this is just the way it is done. I guess it could be to do with the 'h' in hogar, and that "a hogar" is not as easy to say/understand.

Out of curiosity I did a quick Google search (it's not scientific as context does not come into play) and found the following: "a casa" has 100,000,000 results, "a la casa" has 1,930,000,000 results, "a hogar" has 313,000 results and "al hogar" has 2,510,000 results. Like I say, it is not scientific, but it looks as though "a la casa" and "al hogar" are...more correct.

May 1, 2013


rmcgwn's explanation (just above, in my log) is accurate, I think, or at least matches what I learned in school: "la casa" is "the house". But when you omit the article, it becomes "home". I don't remember if I ever learned "el hogar" in school but rmcgwn's explanation makes perfect sense to me linguistically.

December 2, 2014


I agree

April 5, 2013


What is Debo?? They corrected as debo volver a casa

February 23, 2015


Sometimes I need 'que' between the verb and infinitive and sometimes I do not. Is there a rule of thumb for this?

December 9, 2013


Hola benpdo: In this case, the phrase is "tengo que" (followed by infinitive) for "I have to" (followed by infinitive). Just think of it as one word.

December 10, 2013


Por qué no puedo decir simplemente: volver para casa, en vez de volver a casa?

February 3, 2014


Why would it not be "Me tengo que volver a casa?"

August 1, 2014


why ...a casa/al hogar? How does one know to put a... instead of al... or vice-versa? :(

March 4, 2016


Necesito needs to work here. I am sorry, but "to have to" and "to need to" are synonyms, and they are incredibly equal synonyms.

August 24, 2017


i agree

February 15, 2018


I used hogar and it was wrong

November 4, 2017


That's a tricky one. In common every day expressions like go home, stay home, return home, etc, which are simply representing a location, casa without la is used to represent home. You are simply saying that the location is where you live. As on English it might not actually be a house. The Spanish word hogar is the one that embodies all those emotional connotations of home. It also means hearth. Those images of home and hearth are linked in English as well. That was a major focus of my course on D. H. Lawrence and Thomas Hardy in college, especially in Hardy's works. So saying Mi hogar es mi castillo would absolutely be more appropriate than Mi casa es mi castillo in translation of the English expression, although I don't know if it exists in Spanish or not. But all those expressions with home like to make a house a home or home is where the heart is definitely embody the sense of hogar.

November 4, 2017


I left out the que, and duolingo said I should have put 'debo volver a casa'. I must go home was not the way they posed the sentence. It was 'have to' not must. I went back to check to see if the hover included 'debo' but it was not in the list. Confused here.

November 16, 2017


Duo accepts several options and debo and tengo que are generally considered synonymous. Which answer is suggested if you make an error is somewhat dependent on what error you made. The logic is at best strange and often non existent, but it is what it is. Because you omitted the que, Duo showed you an option without the que which is debo. You are not going to find all the accepted options in the hints, and some may be incorrect in the current sentence. In English must is probably viewed as somewhat stronger than have to, although they both are about obligation of some kind. I, unfortunately, cannot speak to whether any difference in degree exists between deber and tener que. But as I said, at least on our level of linguistic sophistication, they are essentially synonymous. Duo does tend to use have to for tener que and must for deber, but that's mostly a convention for convenience of controlling the answer

November 16, 2017


"A" was not an option to pick from

January 23, 2018


In the last exercise 'a hogar' was corrected with al hogar, but you don't need to use a la casa. I was so shocked, I forgot to check until now!!! Anybody know what I did wrong?
Actually, I have never heard of 'hogar' until a few lessons back, never got that word in Spanish class, so I thought that I would try to spread my wings -I guess I got too close to the sun, you know?

January 25, 2018


Can someone explain the need for que? Why cant i omit it?

Tengo que comer pasta. Does this make sense?

February 8, 2018


That que is part of the fixed expressions tenir que to have to, and of course que will always be followed by an infinitive as in this particular expression que functions like a preposition. So your sentence Tengo que comer pasta makes sense assuming that you are trying to say I have to eat pasta. Tengo que dormir, I have to sleep. Tengo que hacer mis tareas, I have to do my homework, etc. Of course tener que is geberally resaonably synonymous to either deber or necesitar.

February 8, 2018


wrote that and was told the correct answer was debo not tengo

February 13, 2018


Did you forget the que? Tengo que is I have to, but debo does not require anything before the infinitive. Duo has a strange system for providing the correct answer if you get something wrong.

February 14, 2018


Is que generally used between two verbs? I have noticed it done several times.

May 15, 2018


Yes, que means "to" which is distinctly different from qué meaning "what" (it took me a while to notice the distinction too).

Que also means "that" as in, for instance: Tengo que salir para que puedo llegar a tiempo ("I have to leave so that I can arrive on time")

May 15, 2018


Well that's a somewhat complex question. Que can be a subordinating conjugations and may separate two verbs in two clauses. But when you see two verbs together like this with the second verb in the infinitive you sometimes have no preposition at all, as with all modal verbs and some others, or you have a preposition. The most common ones are a, de and que, I would think that is listing the order in terms of frequency of use. It is the first verb which determines which preposition to use. In a few cases different preposition will work, and often there are set combinations for different expressions. Tener que (infinitive) is a set expression for to have to (perform the verb).

Here is a link listing some of the common verb phrases with prepositions. You will see that que is not really particularly common in this function beyond to have to.


May 15, 2018


Does anyone else think these prepositions like a, de, en etc are the hardest thing to learn in Spanish? Way harder than verb tenses?

August 27, 2018


I know what you are saying, but the trick is actually not pay too much attention to the English translation for prepositions. You just have to learn the preposition that goes with the verb or expression by rote. They will sometimes make consistent sense, and sometimes not. But that's pretty much the nature of prepositions. Try justifying the various prepositions to à foreigner for variations like stand up, stand down, stand in, stand out, stand to, stand for, stand about, stand of,

August 28, 2018


Tengo que volver a hogar. Why wasn't this accepted by DL? Doesn't hogar mean "home"?

May 15, 2019


It would have to be Tengo que volver AL hogar. This usage here is sort of unique to casa. With the la it means return to the house, without la it means return home. But for the most part you will have the definite article and the noun. Volver a la escuela, volver al aeropuerto, etc. Of course you won't have the definite article before Cities, counties,, etc. But otherwise you should. But I am not certain that Duo will accept it. They can get a little myopic when the answer they want to teach is a different option from the most literal.

May 15, 2019


Thank you for answering my question. It's these subtleties that are so difficult to learn and remember.

May 16, 2019


Duo has been expanding their vocabulary and part of that also seems to be expanding their regional language usage. But for whatever reason, hogar is not a word you see almost at all on Duo (there may be an exercise or two, I am not sure)

May 16, 2019


I am so appreciative of the time you take in responding to those of us learning Spanish.

May 17, 2019


I am also learning. I've just been on Duo learning many languages for a long time. Spanish is probably my best and with my background in Linguistics I am quite advanced for Duo. But that still leaves me in the intermediate range in the real world. But I love this discussion section. If you don't understand something there is often someone in here that says something that makes it clear. Especially in Spanish which I do speak in the real world and will do more of, what I personally am looking for here are the nuances in language that are hard to pick up from most educational sources. How the native speakers reacts to different but similar words. But it is actually one of my joys to help people understand some things from the perspective of another language.

May 17, 2019
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