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Differences between “llevar” and “traer”

Both “llevar ” and “traer” are verbs that refer to moving an “object” from one place to the other, but there is a difference:

We use “llevar” to express that the object is being transported to a place other than where you (the speaker) are.

Examples:

  • Pedro no vino a la clase; le voy a llevar la tarea. Pedro didn’t come to class; I’m going to take him his homework.
  • Ella lleva el postre y nosotros llevamos las bebidas. She’s taking/getting dessert and we’re taking/getting the drinks.
  • Llevó a los niños a la escuela. He took the kids to school.

 

On the other hand, we use “traer” to express that the object is being transported to the place where you (the speaker) are.

Examples:

  • Me va a traer el libro esta tarde. He’s bringing me the book this afternoon.
  • María trae la cena. María is bringing dinner.
  • Mi hermano trajo a sus amigos a cenar. My brother brought his friends over for dinner.
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