Quick answer
"Fail" is an intransitive verb which is often translated as "fallar", and "pass" is a transitive verb which is often translated as "pasar". Learn more about the difference between "fail" and "pass" below.
fail(
feyl
)
An intransitive verb is one that does not require a direct object (e.g. The man sneezed.).
1. (to not succeed)
a. fallar
The manager failed to hold the attention of his team.El gerente falló en mantener la atención de su equipo.
b. fracasar
The protest failed once the police arrived.La protesta fracasó al momento que llegó la policía.
2. (to stop functioning)
a. fallar
The car won't start because the engine has failed.El carro no arranca porque falló el motor.
3. (to not meet expectations)
a. fallar
My brother has failed to show up on time.Mi hermano ha fallado en llegar a tiempo.
b. no cumplir con
The police officer failed to uphold the law.El policía no cumplió con la ley.
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
4. (education)
a. reprobar
Regionalism used in Latin America: all the countries in South America, Central America, and the Caribbean. Does not include Spain.
(Latin America)
Larry is not good at numbers; that's why he failed the math test.A Larry no se le dan bien los números; por eso reprobó el examen de matemáticas.
b. suspender
Regionalism used in Spain
(Spain)
Failing just one test is not the end of the world.No se va a acabar el mundo por suspender solo un examen.
c. catear
A word or phrase that is commonly used in conversational speech (e.g. skinny, grandma).
(colloquial)
Regionalism used in Spain
(Spain)
I can't afford to fail another course in college.No puedo permitirme catear otro curso de universidad.
5. (to disappoint)
a. fallar
Please don't fail me again.No me falles otra vez, por favor.
A noun is a word referring to a person, animal, place, thing, feeling or idea (e.g. man, dog, house).
6. (education)
a. el suspenso
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
This semester I got a fail on my history test.Este semestre saqué un suspenso en mi examen de historia.
7.
A word or phrase that is commonly used in conversational speech (e.g. skinny, grandma).
(colloquial)
(computing)
a. el fracaso
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
A word or phrase that is commonly used in conversational speech (e.g. skinny, grandma).
(colloquial)
I had a laugh looking through some of the best Internet fails.Me pasé un rato riendo mirando algunos de los mejores fracasos en internet.
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pass(
pahs
)
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
1. (to move past)
a. pasar
We passed several small towns on our way to the city.Pasamos varios pueblos pequeños rumbo a la ciudad.
b. adelantar
A Maserati passed me on the highway.Un Maserati me adelantó en la carretera.
c. rebasar
Regionalism used in Mexico
(Mexico)
The Tesla passed the Ferrari in the race.El Tesla rebasó el Ferrari en la carrera.
d. cruzarse con
I passed Danica in the hall on my way to the library.Me crucé con Danica en el pasillo rumbo a la biblioteca.
2. (to receive a passing grade in)
a. aprobar
Did you pass the math exam?¿Aprobaste el examen de matemáticas?
b. pasar
I’m glad to hear that you passed the science test.Me da gusto oír que pasaste la prueba de ciencias.
3. (to cross)
a. cruzar
They passed the border after waiting in line for an hour.Cruzaron la frontera después de esperar una hora en la fila.
4. (medicine)
a. expulsar
If he passes blood in his urine, call me immediately.Si expulsa sangre en la orina, llámame de inmediato.
5. (to surpass)
a. superar
The price of eggs passed a new record today.El precio de los huevos superó un récord nuevo hoy.
6. (to hand over)
a. pasar
Can you pass me a napkin, please?¿Me pasas una servilleta, por favor?
7. (sports)
a. pasar
Why didn't you pass me the ball? I was wide open!¿Por qué no me pasaste la pelota? ¡Estaba completamente abierto!
8. (to approve)
a. aprobar
It seems we have enough votes to pass the bill.Parece que tenemos suficientes votos para aprobar el proyecto de ley.
9. (legal)
a. dictar
The judge passed sentence, but we are going to appeal.El juez dictó sentencia, pero vamos a apelar.
10. (to express)
a. hacer
Arnold was not well liked in town because he was always passing judgment on others.Arnold no era muy querido en la ciudad porque siempre estaba haciendo comentarios sobre los demás.
11. (to move)
a. pasar
It will only take me a minute to pass an iron over the shirt and get the creases out.Solo me entretengo un minuto en pasarle una plancha a la camisa y quitar las arrugas.
12. (to spend)
a. pasar
Carla and Gisela like to pass the time singing.A Carla y Gisela les gusta pasar el rato cantando.
An intransitive verb is one that does not require a direct object (e.g. The man sneezed.).
13. (to move past)
a. pasar
Make sure there aren't any cars coming before you pass.Fíjate en que no vengan carros antes de pasar.
b. adelantar
You can't pass in the intersection.No se puede adelantar en el cruce.
c. rebasar
Regionalism used in Mexico
(Mexico)
It isn't safe to pass on a curve.No es seguro rebasar en una curva.
14. (to receive a passing grade)
a. aprobar
If you study every day, you will pass.Si estudias todos los días, aprobarás.
15. (time)
a. pasar
Since you just gave blood, you need to let a few minutes pass before you stand up.Como acabas de donar sangre, debes dejar pasar unos minutos antes de pararte.
b. transcurrir
Three weeks have passed since our last meeting.Han transcurrido tres semanas desde nuestra última reunión.
16. (to happen)
a. ocurrir
What passed during the Battle of Gettysburg will forever be remembered in the annals of history.Lo que ocurrió durante la Batalla de Gettysburg será recordado por siempre en los anales de la historia.
17. (to be approved)
a. ser aprobado
The budget reform is expected to pass in the senate.Se espera que la reforma presupuestaria se apruebe en el senado.
18. (to transfer)
a. pasar
Tradition held that the crown must pass to the oldest male heir.La tradición sostenía que la corona debía pasar al heredero primogénito varón.
19. (sports)
a. pasar
Alex passed and then ran interference.Alex pasó y luego corrió para bloquear al otro equipo.
b. hacer un pase
She passed to Maria who then scored.Ella hizo un pase a María, quien luego anotó.
20. (to decline)
a. pasar
Thanks for the invitation but I’m going to pass this time.Gracias por la invitación pero voy a pasar por ahora.
21. (to be acceptable)
a. pasar
This print isn’t very good, but it’ll pass.Esta copia no está muy bien, pero pasará.
22. (to dissipate)
a. pasarse
If you have a glass of water, maybe your headache will pass.Si tomas un vaso de agua, a lo mejor se te pasa el dolor de cabeza.
A noun is a word referring to a person, animal, place, thing, feeling or idea (e.g. man, dog, house).
23. (geography)
a. el paso
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
People have traversed the Khyber Pass for centuries.La gente ha atravesado el Paso Jáiber durante siglos.
b. el desfiladero
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
There is a narrow pass between Austria and Italy.Hay un desfiladero estrecho entre Austria e Italia.
c. el puerto
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
The mountain pass was closed due to snow.El puerto de montaña se cerró debido a una nevada.
24. (permit)
a. el pase
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
We need a pass to camp in these woods.Necesitamos un pase para acampar en este bosque.
b. el permiso
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
Students are not allowed to leave class without a pass.No se permite a los estudiantes salir de clase sin un permiso.
25. (sports)
a. el pase
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
Trevor got a great pass from Darren and scored the winning goal.Trevor recibió un pase magnífico de Darren y anotó el gol ganador.
26. (movement)
a. el pase
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
With a pass of his wand, the rabbit disappeared.Con un pase de su varita, el conejo desapareció.
b. la pasada
(f) means that a noun is feminine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
The plane made four passes over the city and then headed back to land.El avión hizo cuatro pasadas sobre la ciudad y luego se fue a aterrizar.
27. (in exam)
a. el aprobado
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
He didn’t score as high as he wanted, but at least he got a pass.No sacó una calificación tan alta como quisiera, pero por lo menos obtuvo un aprobado.
28. (state of affairs)
a.
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
The negotiations reached such a pass that all sides decided to take a break.Las negociaciones habían llegado a tal extremo que todas las partes decidieron tomar un descanso.
Things have come to a pretty pass when she says she can’t live on $10,000 a month.Hay que ver a dónde hemos llegado cuando ella dice que no puede vivir con $10,000 al mes.
29. (ticket for multiple uses)
a. el abono
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
If you're going to stay in Paris for a week, you should get a weekly pass to move around.Si te quedas una semana en París, te conviene comprar un abono semanal para moverte.
b. el pase
(m) means that a noun is masculine. Spanish nouns have a gender, which is either feminine (like la mujer or la luna) or masculine (like el hombre or el sol).
If you buy a season pass, you get exclusive benefits.Si compras un pase de temporada, consigues beneficios exclusivos.
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