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  5. "You can't smoke at the airpo…

"You can't smoke at the airport."

Translation:No puedes fumar en el aeropuerto.

June 16, 2018



I was taking a stab at the formal usage here and wrote, "no pueden fumar ustedes en el aeropuerto." Shouldn't that work?


delarme- It should work because there's no context


I won't try to answer how well your alternative works or if there are issues with it. I'm not sure. But I will note that I think you did not succeed in using the formal, which I think is "usted puede", but the second person plural, ustedes pueden. I will leave it to native speakers to address if that works.


Currently, Duo accepts the following sentences with 'ustedes' and 'pueden':

  • En el aeropuerto no pueden ustedes fumar.
  • En el aeropuerto ustedes no pueden fumar.
  • No pueden ustedes fumar en el aeropuerto.
  • Ustedes no pueden fumar en el aeropuerto.

So it seems that if you want to put 'ustedes' after 'pueden', it has to precede 'fumar'.


I used what I think is the more common way to put this, "No se puede fumar en el aeropuerto," and it is now also accepted by Duolingo. This avoids the issue of familiar vs formal language and the issue of plural and singular. I learned to translate "No se puede..." as "It is not permitted."


Great hint! Checked it out and you are correct. “not permitted” = “you can’t”


I wrote "No se puede fumar en la habitación del hotel" and I got wrong, then I wrote " Ustedes no pueden fumar en el aeropuerto", also wrong. The correct answer according to Duo is "Ustedes no pueden fumar en la habitación del hotel", resp "No puedes fumar en el aeropuerto". What is the distinction?


prof- I really don't understand that, is it a bug or a mistake from Duo, because habitación and aeropuerto are 2 different words, they don't mean the same


Why does duo use the familiar almost exclusively?


jim- it's not exclusive, with no context both are accepted


Me: No fumas en el aeropuerto (wrong) Duo: No puedes fumar en el aeropuerto (correct)

I feel like being marked wrong for omitting 'puedes' is overly pedantic on duo's part.


Why fumar and not fumas?


The verb 'poder' has to be conjugated (puedes), the following verb 'fumar' has to remain in its infinitive form.

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