"Ir" and "Irse" in Spanish

Quick Answer

Learners of Spanish often have trouble distinguishing when to use ir (to go) and irse (to leave). Below you'll find some tips and examples to help you on your way to becoming the master of the ir / irse distinction.

All about Ir

examples
Voy a la tienda.
I am going to the store.
Fuimos hasta la esquina.
We went to the corner.
  • Ir can also be used to indicate a mode of transportation where there is an unspoken or implied destination.
examples
Van en avión.
They are going (somewhere) by plane.
¿Vas a pie?
Are you going (somewhere) on foot?
examples
Va a almorzar a las doce.
He is going to have lunch at noon.
Voy a ir a la escuela mañana.
I'm going to go to school tomorrow.

Want to learn more about ir? Check out these articles!

All about Irse

examples
Tengo que irme de aquí.
I have to leave here.
¿Te vas a las seis?
Are you leaving at six?
¡No se vayan!
Don't go!
¿Por qué te vas tan temprano?
Why are you leaving so soon?

Ir would be incorrect in the above sentences because no destination is mentioned.

Want to learn more about other tricky Spanish verb pairs? Check out these articles!

"Pedir" vs. "Preguntar"

"Ser" vs. "Estar"

When to Use "Soy" vs. "Estoy"

"Saber" vs. "Conocer"

"Hablar" vs. "Decir" vs. "Contar"

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