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Quick answer
"Despilfarrar" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "to squander", and "gastar" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "to spend". Learn more about the difference between "despilfarrar" and "gastar" below.
despilfarrar(
dehs
-
peel
-
fah
-
rrahr
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (general)
a. to squander
Paul despilfarra su dinero comprando artilugios costosos que no necesita.Paul squanders his money buying expensive gadgets he doesn't need.
El millonario despilfarró su fortuna en coches deportivos.The millionaire squandered his fortune on sports cars.
b. to waste
Nos queda poca agua. ¡No la despilfarres regando las plantas!We're running out of water. Don't waste it on the plants!
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gastar(
gahs
-
tahr
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to expend)
a. to spend
Gastan más dinero del que ingresan.They spend more money than they earn.
2. (to consume)
a. to use
Lucinda gasta mucho papel porque está siempre dibujando.Lucinda uses lots of paper because she's always drawing.
b. to use up
¿Ya gastaste todos los huevos?Did you already use up all the eggs?
3. (to make deteriorate)
a. to wear out
Los niños gastan las suelas de los zapatos en muy poco tiempo.Children wear out the soles of their shoes in no time at all.
b. to wear down
Dina gastó los tacones de sus zapatos bailando en el festival.Dina wore down the heels on her shoes dancing in the festival.
4. (to squander)
a. to waste
No me gusta gastar mi tiempo inútilmente.I don't like to waste my time pointlessly.
5.
A word or phrase that is commonly used in conversational speech (e.g. skinny, grandma).
(colloquial)
(to use on the body)
Regionalism used in Spain
(Spain)
a. to wear
¿Cuándo empezaste a gastar gafas?When did you begin to wear glasses?
b. to be
¿Qué talla gastas de camisa?What size shirt are you?
c. to take
¿Puedo probar estos zapatos en mi número? - ¿Qué número gasta?Can I try these shoes on in my size? - What size do you take?
An intransitive verb is one that does not require a direct object (e.g. The man sneezed.).
6. (to expend money)
a. to spend
A Eva le gusta más gastar que trabajar.Eva likes spending more than working.
gastarse
A pronominal verb always uses a reflexive pronoun. (e.g. Te ves cansado.).
7. (to waste money)
a. to spend
Paco se gasta todo lo que gana en apostar.Paco spends all he earns on gambling.
8. (to run down)
a. to run out
Se te gastarán las pilas en seguida si no bajas el volumen.Your batteries will run out in no time if you don't turn the volume down.
9. (to deteriorate from use)
a. to wear out
Como es la camisa que más me pongo, ya se gastó el cuello.As it’s the shirt I wear the most, the collar already wore out.
b. to wear down
¡Qué raro! Solo se gastó el tacón de la bota derecha.How weird! Only the heel on the right boot wore down.
10. (to squander)
a. to waste
No te gastes el tiempo tratando de convencerlo; está decidido en no esforzarse nada.Don't waste your time trying to convince him; he's determined not to make any effort.
11.
A word or phrase that is commonly used in conversational speech (e.g. skinny, grandma).
(colloquial)
(to exhibit)
Regionalism used in Spain
(Spain)
a. to have
Roberto se gasta un genio; por eso tiene tan pocos amigos.Roberto has an awful temper; that's why he has so few friends.
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