Native Spanish speakers: Video 1

native spanish speakers

Welcome to the first in our brand new series of videos with native Spanish speakers!

We’ve gone out and interviewed young people around Spain to give you an idea of the language that is really used in everyday life.  

In recent years, it’s extremely common to hear older Spaniards moaning about the so-called NiNi generation: the millennials who neither work nor study (ni trabajan, ni estudian).

Is this valid criticism? Is it true that young Spaniards are a bunch of idle layabouts?

Judge for yourself in these interviews with four young Gallegos (Galicians).

About this series

There’s no better way to learn a language than to listen to native speakers.  That’s why we’ve sent a team out to Galicia, in northern Spain, to film a series of informal interviews with native Spanish speakers.  In this first video, we’ll hear four young Spaniards talking about their work and studies.

Not so fast

In these videos all of the interviewees are talking at their normal speed, which is pretty darn quick, I’m afraid.  Don’t panic! If you can’t understand everything just hit the rewind button and listen a few more times.  You’ll soon eventually be able to make out what is being said. In any event, in this article, we’ll go over the most essential words and expressions from the video.

Subtitles in Spanish and English

We’ve added subtitles in both Spanish and English. Hit the CC button on the YouTube player and choose the language. I highly recommend watching at least once without subtitles. Then watch the video again with Spanish subtitles.  If you still don’t have a clue what’s going on, then launch the English subtitles, or take a look at the translated video transcript I’ve included at the bottom of this post.

Real Spanish Video 1

Was that easy to understand? Have another watch if you really didn’t understand anything.  Then move on and look at the main vocabulary points from this video:

Giving your name

In Spain and Latin America, you’ll hear all of these three forms:

  • Me llamo…
    I’m called…
  • Mi nombre es…
    My name is…
  • Soy…


You’ll only ever hear one way of giving your age in Spanish, and it’s with the verb ‘tener’ not ‘ser’ or ‘estar’:

  • Tengo 26 años
    I’m 26 years’ old

Soy de…

We use ‘soy de’ to say where we are from.

  • Soy de Pontevedra.
    I’m from Pontevedra.
  • Soy de Vigo.
    I’m from Vigo.


The second of the two Spanish verbs which correspond to the English verb ‘be’. We use ‘estar’ to talk about work, studies and what we are doing now:

  • Estoy estudiando.
    I’m studying.
  • No estoy trabajando.
    I’m not working.

Notice how the ‘V’ is pronounced?  More on that in our Idiot’s Guide to Spanish Pronunciation

Vocabulary from the videos

There was a lot of vocabulary packed into those 4 minutes of video. Let’s review some of the most important bits:

The verbs from this video

Even a short interview can give rise to lots of new vocabulary if you are a beginner. Here are the infinitive forms for all (yes, all!) the verbs which are mentioned in this video.

  • Ser – be
  • Estar – be
  • Tener – have
  • Llamarse – call (yourself)
  • Gustar – like
  • Creer – believe
  • Estudiar – study
  • Trabajar – work
  • Llevar – carry*

* The verb llevar is also used to talk about the duration of an activity.

There’s more…

  • Intentar – try / intend
  • Seguir – continue / keep / follow
  • Iniciar – start
  • Tomar – take
  • Vivir – live
  • Ir – go
  • Servir – serve
  • Haber – have
  • Hacer – do

And more…

  • Decir – say
  • Saber – know
  • Ganar – earn/win
  • Escribir – write
  • Traducir – translate
  • Verse – see yourself
  • Encantar – love / like a lot
  • Empezar – start / begin
  • Ampliar – amplify

If you’re a beginner then make sure you know at least these seven:

  • Ser
  • Estar
  • Tener
  • Llamarse
  • Ir
  • Trabajar
  • Estudiar

Five key phrases from this video.

If you only remember 5 phrases from this video….

  • Estoy buscando trabajo*
    I’m looking for work.
  • Estoy estudiando…
    I’m studying…

*One you’ll hear way too often in modern Spain. However, the Spanish are generally a positive, optimistic bunch:

  • ¡Estoy super feliz!
    I’m really happy!
  • Estoy muy contenta con la situación porque…
    I’m really content with the situation because…
  • Tengo muchas esperanzas
    I’m very hopeful

And one extra phrase for those who like to talk about ‘big’ issues:

  • Lo más importante en la vida para mí es…
    For me, the most important thing in life is…


The questions from the video.

The main questions which we asked – and which you might want to use yourself – were:

  • ¿A qué te dedicas?
    What do you do? (job,studies)
  • ¿Eres feliz con tu trabajo o tus estudios?
    Are you happy with your work or studies?
  • ¿Qué es lo más importante en la vida?
    What’s the most important thing in life?
  • ¿Dónde te ves en cinco años?
    Where do you see yourself in five years?

Spanish Pronunciation

As we’ve already said, all of the interviewees in this first video speak very quickly, particularly Nuria and Lucia.

Practice makes perfect though, and you’ll be able to listen to these same 4 interviewees in the next three videos in this series.

If you feel like you need a bit more help when it comes to understanding Spanish pronunciation, then take a look at our new Idiot’s Guide to Spanish Pronunciation (Did we mention that already?), which gives some essential tips for understanding and speaking Spanish correctly.

Where were these videos filmed?

These videos were filmed in Vigo and Pontevedra, two cities in Galicia, the communidad autonoma which occupies the north western corner of the Iberian peninsula.

Thanks to its Atlantic location, it is one of the rainiest areas of Spain, and locals will often tell you that the weather is as wet and windy as the UK. That’s simply not true! However, it’s definitely a far cry from sunny Andalusia or the Balearic islands in the warm Mediterranean sea.

Are we done for today?

If it’s all been a bit much for you (Sorry, our interviewees did speak VERY quickly), then maybe take a look at our much gentler series of articles on Spanish for travellers.  Alternatively, if you are just starting out with the language, then check out Aurora’s brilliantly explained Basic Spanish classes.