"Necesito comprar fruta hoy."
Translation:I need to buy fruit today.
what is the difference between necesito and tengo que? I am still a bit confused...
Necesito is "I need" and tengo que is "I have to". To me "need" and "have" imply the same thing when used as "I need to buy food" or "I have to buy food" However you don't need to use que with necesito.
Necesito comprar comida. (I need to buy food.) Tengo que comprar comida. (I have to buy food.)
"Tengo que comprar comida" would be far more natural though. It's only natural to use necesitar when the object is a noun or a subordinated sentence.
"Tener que" (have to) is a requirement in the sense of an obligation. For example, you have promised someone that you'll buy the fruit, or you have to do it as part of your job.
Necesitar (need to) is a requirement in the sense of something that is necessary to complete a goal. For example, you need to buy fruit in order to make a fruit salad.
Why is it that we don't need to use 'que' when saying 'Necesito comprar'?
But why do we need to use 'que' when saying 'Tengo que comprar'?
That's just the way it is. Different verbs require different prepositions (or require nothing) before a following infinitive.
Ir needs an a = Voy a estudiar. I'm going to study.
Tratar needs a de = Trato de aprender. I try to learn.
Necesitar needs nothing = Necesito comer. I need to eat.
The verbs that require prepositions and which ones they require just have to be learned by memorization and experience. (There are lists on line. Sorry I don't have a ready link.)
And here I am wondering what in the world forbids the usage of "fruits" instead of "fruit".
Sure, I get it you may say it in singular, but to my knowledge it's the absolute same with plural...
Try changing the "fruit" to "car", for example. Sure, not many people need to buy multiple cars at once, but even those who have to will most probably not say "I need to buy car today".
By the way, I came to learn spanish and not english..!
"Fruit" in this case is a collective noun referring to the type of thing being bought. "Car" is not a collective noun. Examples of other collective nouns:
"I need to buy meat for the dinner." (not meats) "The poor are hungry and want bread." (not breads) "We will order dessert after dinner." (not desserts)
Yet to my understanding it should be acceptable to say "fruits" here, as the meaning is very near the same.
Or perhaps what DL means to teach us here is that the same applies with spanish as in english... In which case I understand being marked wrong for "fruits" but am faced with a new question: does this apply to more than just fruit(s?): "Necesito comprar carne para la cena." "Los pobres tienen hambre y quiero pan." "Pediremos postre después la cena."
Seems to make sense to me, except when considering the poor as a group that IS hungry, so would it be also acceptable to translate this as "Los pobres tiene hambre..."?
Maybe I'm just reaching too far. The original "fruta" is in singular, so the translation is most accurate in singular as well.
Thanks for the reply. It helped a lot! I hope you're having a good day. :)
Yes, your Spanish translations of the sentences are appropriate as well! The singular is used for those collective nouns. As for "the poor", that would be plural; we are matching the "plurality" of the noun in question without grouping them.
There are a few cases of Spanish nouns that are the same in singular and plural:
For example, "el paraguas" (the umbrella) -- "Necesito mi paraguas" (I need my umbrella) is also "los paraguas".
Also "el/los parabrisas" (the windshield, the windshields), "el/los salvavidas" (the lifeguard, the lifeguards), and el/los abrelatas (the can opener, the can openers).