Characteristics of ser and estar

Characteristics of ser and estar

Source: Practice Makes Perfect: Spanish Vocabulary (Practice Makes Perfect Series) by Dorothy Devney Richmond

Ser and Estar mean the same as “am”, but how we do realise about this if we do not know characteristics about them in order to distinghish them form each other. Let’ see them now, one by one.

Characteristics of estar (click on each one for more detail)




  • Current action: what you’re doing now—the present progressive
  • Results of action: what you are like after something happens
  • Deviation from the norm, unnatural state, the particular (vs. the general)


Characteristics of ser

  • Stating clock time
  • Stating the day of the week
  • Stating the date
  • Possession
  • Profession
  • Relationship Personality (character) description
  • Natural, basic state; general, sweeping statement
  • Identification
  • Nationality, citizenship, and origin

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