Spanish word of the week: apetecer

apetecer VERB to feel like

If you like something you probably know that the basic way to say so is with gustar:

Me gusta jugar al béisbol. I like playing baseball.

Apetecer is a word you are likely to come across in Spain, but not in Latin America, and it works in the same way as gustar. If the thing you feel like is singular, or is a verb, you use apetecer in the singular:

Me apetece un café. I feel like a coffee.

If the thing you feel like is plural, you use apetecer in the plural:

Me apetecían cosas nuevas. I felt like something different.

A polite way for a waiter to ask what you want to eat is:

¿Qué le apetece comer, señor? What would you like to eat, sir? (word for word, ‘what takes your fancy to eat?’)

To say ‘no’ very politely, you can also use apetecer:

¿Quieres salir a cenar hoy? – No, gracias, ahora no me apetece. Would you like to go out to dinner tonight? No thanks, I don’t feel like it just now.

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