Indicative vs. Subjunctive 
Cheat Sheet
A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
transitive verb
1. (to have a preference)
a. to prefer
¿Prefieres trabajar en grupo o solo?Do you prefer working in a team or on your own?
This refers to an idiomatic word or phrase for which there is no word-for-word translation.
no direct translation
Prefiero que se lo digas tú porque a ti te hace más caso.I'd rather you told him because he listens to you more.
¿No preferirías ir de vacaciones al extranjero este año?Wouldn't you rather vacation abroad this year?
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A transitive verb is a verb that requires a direct object (e.g. I bought a book.).
transitive verb
1. (general)
a. to prefer
¿qué prefieres, vino o cerveza?what would you prefer, wine or beer?
prefiere no salirshe'd prefer not to go out, she'd rather not go out
preferir algo (a algo)to prefer something (to something)
prefiero que me digan las cosas a la caraI prefer people to say things to my face, I'd rather people said things to my face
Copyright © 2006 Harrap Publishers Limited
transitive verb
to prefer
preferir el té al café to prefer tea to coffee; ¿cuál prefieres? which do you prefer?; ¿qué prefieres (tomar)? what will you have?; prefiero ir a pie I prefer to walk; I'd rather walk
Más verbo
Cuando se habla de generalizaciones, preferir + infinitivo se traduce por prefer + -ing:
Prefiero nadar a correr I prefer swimming to running
Juan siempre prefería leer a trabajar Juan always preferred reading to working
Cuando se habla de lo que se quiere hacer en una ocasión determinada, prefiero/preferiría se traducen por would rather + infinitivo sin to o, en un contexto más formal, por would prefer + infinitivo con to:
—¿Vamos al cine? —Preferiría quedarme en casa "Shall we go to the cinema?" — "I'd rather stay o I'd prefer to stay at home"
Prefiero quedarme en un hotel a alquilar un apartamento I'd rather stay in a hotel than rent an apartment, I'd prefer to stay in a hotel rather than rent an apartment
Como se puede ver en el ejemplo anterior, would prefer to se usa en correlación con rather than + infinitivo sin to y nunca con than solo.
Cuando se trata de traducir estructuras como preferiría que + oración subordinada, en inglés se emplea la siguiente estructura: sujeto de la oración principal + would rather + sujeto + verbo en pasado:
Preferiría que él me llamara I'd rather he phoned me
—¿Te importa que hable con ella? —Preferiría que no lo hicieras "Do you mind if I talk to her?" — "I'd rather you didn't"
Otra posibilidad de expresar esta construcción en inglés sería: would prefer it if + resto de la oración o would prefer + objeto + construcción de infinitivo:
Preferiría que él me llamara I'd prefer it if he phoned me o I'd prefer him to phone me
Collins Complete Spanish Electronic Dictionary © HarperCollins Publishers 2011
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