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Do you know what filler words are?
Those are for some cute little words that fill the gaps in and between the sentences, and for some annoying things that people use when they don't know how to express their thoughts and opinions clearly?
What do you think?
Are filler words useful or useless?
In our opinion, filler words can be quite useful especially when you learn and practice foreign languages.
In Spanish, there are plenty of filler words or 'muletillas' that can help you sound more natural and overcome the obstacle if you can't remember the word at that moment.
In honor of ‘muletillas,’ we've gathered the 11 most common Spanish filler words that you should enlist in your everyday vocabulary.
When you remember them, we suggest you practice using them with Spanish tutors. That way, you will be sure that you've used them correctly.
And now let's dive in.
Seems like yesterday you were struggling to memorize Spanish words that start with ñ. Today, all that seems like a distant past.
And now you came to the point where you should enlist filler words into your Spanish vocabulary.
Even though some phrases can impress every Spanish speaker, knowing when and how to use Spanish filler words gives an extra good impression about your Spanish knowledge.
That’s why in the following lines, you will find the 11 most common Spanish filler words.
Literally, it can be translated as 'to see' but it actually means 'let's see.'
Here's an example:
A ver… ¿Qué podemos hacer esta noche?- Let 's see… What can we do tonight?
'A ver' can also be used instead of 'vamos a ver.' This phrase is usually used in situations when someone is talking and no one pays attention, so to get more attention before saying something, you can say 'vamos a ver' first.
Example: ¡Vamos a ver! ¿Os podéis callar ya?- Alright then! Can everyone be quiet already?
The filler word ‘asi que’ can also be used as a transition word, which means that it can connect two sentences.
It is used at the beginning of the sentence and it can be translated as ‘so’ and ‘therefore.’
Besides the basic one, you can also use it as ‘asi que bueno’ and ‘asi que nada’ which can be translated as ‘so anyway...’ or ‘so yeah…’
Example: ¿Así que al final fuiste al cine?- So you ended up going to the cinema?
Thi filler word can be used in many different cases and can have different meanings.
It is usually used at the beginning of a sentence, and it can be translated as ‘good.’
At first, it can be used instead of ‘pues’ when you don’t know how to respond and you need some time to think.
Example: Bueno… lo tengo que pensar.- Well… I have to think about it.
It can also be used when you agree with something, like in the following example:
Bueno… sí, eso es una buena idea.- Well… yeah, that is a good idea for me.
On the other hand, it can be used to express if you are annoyed by something or someone, or you don’t believe what you see or hear.
Example: ¡No me lo creo que sigas durmiendo! Pero bueno!- I don’t believe you are still sleeping! Well then!
This filler word comes from the verb 'decir' which means 'to say/ to tell' and it can be translated as 'I say' but it's more natural meaning would be 'I mean.'
This phrase is great because it can mask if you don't know what to say or you make a mistake while talking.
Example: La clase empieza a las dos, digo a las tres.- The class starts at two, I mean at three o’clock.
Besides being a great filler word, ‘entonces’ is also an ideal connecting word, just like in English are ‘so’ and ‘therefore.’
Therefore, you can use it either at the beginning of the sentence or in the middle to connect to parts of the sentence or even two sentences.
Example: Entonces, ¿qué vas a hacer?- So, what are you going to do?
Here’s one great filler word to end the conversation, especially when the whole conversation is a bit weird so no one doesn’t know what to say.
You can use it with other filler words such as ‘pues’ or ‘este.’
Example: En fin… pues, me tengo que ir. ¡Hasta luego!- So, that 's it… well, I have to go. See you later!
The word ‘este…’ is the perfect equivalent to the English ‘uh…’ and ‘um…’ but literally, it means ‘this.’
This is one of the most commonly used filler words and also one of the main words in school during classes and presentations.
People also use ‘este’ when they are not telling the truth and with this filler word they are trying to think about what they are going to say.
If you want to get more attention or to emphasize, pronounce the last syllable as long as possible so that it sounds something like ‘esteeeeee…’
Example: ¿Dónde estás? Este… en la casa.- Where are you? Uhm, in the house.
When you want to explain something that hasn’t been understood very clearly and you want to clarify it, you can use the ‘o sea’ filler word. In English, its equivalent may be ‘in other words.’
Example: Venía como tortuga en el tráfico, o sea lentisimo.- I was like a turtle in traffic, that is very slow
When you want to get someone’s attention, you can use the word ‘oye.’ It can usually be translated as ‘hey’ especially in this case, but also can mean ‘listen’ again, to try to make someone listen to you.
Example: Oye, ¿qué hiciste el fin de semana?- Hey, what did you do on the weekend?
This is one of the most commonly used filler words. In English, it can be translated as ‘well…’
The word is usually used at the beginning of the sentence.
Example: Pues… no se que hacer mañana.- Well… I don’t know what to do tomorrow.
You can use ‘pues’ when you have to answer questions you haven’t expected.
Example: Que vamos hacer esta noche? Pues, no lo se, no tengo la idea.- What we are going to do tonight? Well, I don’t know, I don’t have an idea.
Just like in English you would use the colloquial phrase ‘You know?’ the same way you can use this filler word in Spanish.
Example: Es muy importante para mí, ¿sabes?- This is really important to me, you know?
The phrase ‘¿sabes que?’ is widely used at the beginning of the sentence, to sound like some kind of introduction.
Example: ¿Sabes qué voy a hacer? Voy a mudarme a Cuba.- You know what I’m going to do? I’m going to move to Cuba.
Pues, en fin, we hope that these 11 most common Spanish filler words will help you fill in the gaps that come up during the conversations with Spanish tutors.
They are also a great way to show your Spanish knowledge because not every Spanish student will know how and when to use them properly in Spanish small talks.
And, which one is your favorite filler word?
Share it with us in the comments below!
A Ver, Asi Que, Bueno, Digo, Entonces, En Fin!, Este, O Sea?, Oye, Pues, ¿Sabes?
A filler word is a word, phrase, or sound that marks a pause or hesitation when you speak.
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