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Quick answer
"In" is a preposition which is often translated as "en", and "work at" is a transitive verb phrase which is often translated as "trabajar en". Learn more about the difference between "in" and "work at" below.
A preposition is a word that indicates the relationship between a noun and another word (e.g. He ran through the door.).
1. (used to indicate location)
a. en
Your father is in the kitchen.Tu padre está en la cocina.
b. dentro de (inside of)
Dinner is in the fridge.La cena está dentro de la nevera.
2. (used to indicate time)
a. en
She was born in 1983.Nació en 1983.
b. dentro de (within)
I finished the third book in the "A Song of Ice and Fire" series in three days.Terminé el tercer libro en la colección "Una canción de hielo y fuego" dentro de tres días.
3. (at the conclusion of)
a. dentro de
We have to leave in five minutes, at the latest.Nos tenemos que ir dentro de cinco minutos, a más tardar.
b. en
You go on ahead. I'll meet you in a half hour.Tú ve. Yo te veo en media hora.
4. (used to indicate manner)
a. en
Does this dress come in red?Este vestido, ¿está disponible en rojo?
Try introducing yourself in Spanish.Intenta presentarte en español.
5. (after superlatives)
a. de
Lionel Messi is, without a doubt, the best soccer player in the world.Lionel Messi es, sin duda, el mejor futbolista del mundo.
6. (with ratios and quantities)
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
Four people in five preferred the first brand of soda.Cuatro de cada cinco personas prefirieron la primera marca de refresco.
The wedding party should come down the aisle in twos.El cortejo nupcial debe caminar por el pasillo de dos en dos.
7. (used to indicate activity)
a. en
I heard you can make a lot of money in sales.Oí que se puede hacer mucho dinero en ventas.
b. dedicarse a
He works in investment banking.Él se dedica a la banca de inversión.
An adverb is a word that describes a verb, an adjective, or other adverbs (e.g. to run quickly, very tired).
8. (inside)
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
Am I going to stand out here all day, or are you going to invite me in?¿Me voy a quedar parado aquí afuera el día entero, o me vas a invitar a pasar?
The dog won't come in until they open the door.El perro no entrará hasta que abran la puerta.
9. (present)
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
I'm afraid the doctor isn't in today.Me temo que el doctor no se encuentra hoy.
Is Denise in? I'd like to speak with her.¿Está Denise? Me gustaría hablar con ella.
An adjective is a word that describes a noun (e.g. the big dog).
10. (fashionable)
a. de moda
Short skirts are no longer in.Las minifaldas ya no están de moda.
A noun is a word referring to a person, animal, place, thing, feeling or idea (e.g. man, dog, house).
11. (connection)
a. la palanca
(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).
He only got the job because his dad has an in with the company.Solo consiguió el puesto porque su papá tiene palanca dentro de la empresa.
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work at(
A transitive verb phrase is a phrase that combines a verb with a preposition or other particle and requires a direct object (e.g. Take out the trash.).
transitive verb phrase
1. (to work in a place)
a. trabajar en
Ana works at a supermarket.Ana trabaja en un supermercado.
2. (to put work into)
a. trabajar en
I've been working at the design for this company's logo all day.Llevo todo el día trabajando en el diseño del logo para una empresa.
3. (to strive for)
a. poner empeño en
With the help of her therapist, Rachel has been working at controlling her anger issues.Con la ayuda de su terapeuta, Rachel ha estado poniendo empeño en controlar sus problemas con la rabia.
b. practicar
Daniel still needs to work at the sonata more before the audition.Daniel todavía tiene que practicar la sonata más antes de la audición.
c. darle duro
If you keep working at it, you'll be a great gymnast.Si le sigues dando duro, serás un gran gimnasta.
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