Quick answer
"De vez en cuando" is an adverb which is often translated as "once in a while", and "a veces" is a phrase which is often translated as "sometimes". Learn more about the difference between "de vez en cuando" and "a veces" below.
de vez en cuando(
deh
 
behs
 
ehng
 
kwahn
-
doh
)
An adverb is a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or other adverbs (e.g. to run quickly, very tired).
1. (indicating frequency)
a. once in a while
Solo nos vemos de vez en cuando pero seguimos siendo buenos amigos.We only see each other once in a while but we continue to be good friends.
b. occasionally
De vez en cuando me fumo uno que otro cigarrillo.I'll occasionally smoke a cigarette or two.
c. from time to time
Riega las plantas de vez en cuando para que no se mueran.Water the plants from time to time so that they don't die.
d. now and again
De vez en cuando me gusta hacer senderismo.I like to go hiking now and again.
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a veces(
ah
 
beh
-
sehs
)
A phrase is a group of words commonly used together (e.g once upon a time).
phrase
1. (occasionally)
a. sometimes
A veces desayuno en un café cerca de mi casa.Sometimes I have breakfast at a coffee shop near my house.
b. at times
A veces el viento está tan fuerte que ni puedes abrir la puerta. At times the wind is so strong you can't open the door.
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