Monday, 21 May 2012

How Many Sandwiches Do You Want?

Imagine you are in a bar somewhere in Spain with a group of other people. You are about to order some food and drinks for the whole group. Your order seems to include some sandwiches. The waiter wants to clarify the number of sandwichws you want and says to you something like: "how many sandwiches do you want?"

In Spanish, the other person could choose to be less formal and say:
¿Cuántos bocadillos queréis?

Alternatively, he/ she could choose to be more formal and say:
¿Cuántos bocadillos quieren (ustedes)?

The question is an invitation for you to state the number of sandwiches you are ordering. When stating the number sandswiches in your order, you DO NOT need to be concerned about the level of formality in the other person's question. Your main concern should be about communicating the number of sandwiches. Perhaps what you want to say is that you want:
  • A specific number of sandwiches;
  • A specific number of sandwiches with details of sandwich filling;
  • No sandwiches at all;

Here are some examples of how you could reply:
  • Queremos dos* bocadillos (we want two sandwiches);
  • Queremos dos* bocadillos de queso (we want two cheese sandwiches);
  • Queremos tres* bocadillos, uno* de queso y dos* de jamón (we want three sandwiches, one with cheese and two with ham);
  • No, no queremos bocadillos, gracias (no, we don't want any sandwiches, thank you);

*NB For other numbers of sandwiches, simply change the number accordingly.

Now you should practice answering the question:
¿Cuántos bocadillos queréis?

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