1. Forum
  2. >
  3. Topic: Educators
  4. >
  5. Meaning between Ser & Estar


Meaning between Ser & Estar

So some us might be thinking Ser and Estar have the exact same meaning but why are they spelled a different way, your exactly correct! I am here to help you!

Ser means: to be When we use ser to describe the qualities or characteristics of a person, place, or thing, the meaning behind those descriptions .

Estar means: to be However, when we use estar to describe the same attributes, they become associated with the short period of time in which the speaker is using them.

Here are some examples: Example #1: Mi amiga es muy amable My friend is very nice

In this example: In the example above, the speaker is equating he or her friend with being nice.

Example #2: Estás muy guapa en ese vestido de novia. You are very beautiful in that wedding dress.

In this example: In the second example, the speaker uses estar to highlight that the person that she or he is referring to in the sentence is especially beautiful while she is wearing the wedding dress.

I hope this helps you who are struggling like I did with Ser & Estar!

September 7, 2019



I teach my students who are learning Spanish "For how you feel and where you are, always use the verb estar" -- it's an easy-to-remember rhyme, although estar is also used for the present progressive (estás caminando = you are walking).

Ser is used for most other uses in general (DIP ON TOP):

Description of physical characteristics/personality traits







Profession (I know, basically the same thing as Occupation, but it completes the acronym)

Learn a language in just 5 minutes a day. For free.