How to Say “To Dance” in Spanish: Formal and Informal Ways

Congratulations! You’ve decided to dive into the vibrant world of Spanish dance. Whether you’re planning a trip to a Spanish-speaking country, attending a Latin dance class, or simply interested in expanding your language skills, learning how to say “to dance” in Spanish is a great place to start. In this guide, we’ll explore both formal and informal ways of expressing this concept, providing you with essential tips and examples along the way. So, let’s put on our dancing shoes and begin our linguistic journey!

Formal Ways to Say “To Dance” in Spanish

When it comes to formal contexts, such as communicating with older individuals, using professional language, or engaging in official conversations, it’s important to choose the appropriate verb. In Spanish, the formal way to say “to dance” is “bailar.” Let’s explore this verb further and look at some examples:

1. Bailar

Ellos bailan muy bien juntos. (They dance very well together.)

El baila en la compañía de ballet. (He dances in the ballet company.)

As you can see, “bailar” is a versatile verb that can be conjugated to match different subjects and tenses. It can be used in both singular and plural forms depending on the subject, such as “él” (he), “ella” (she), “usted” (you formal), or “ellos/ellas/ustedes” (they/you all formal). Remember to conjugate the verb accordingly to fit the context of your sentence.

Informal Ways to Say “To Dance” in Spanish

Informal settings provide an opportunity to use more relaxed and colloquial language. Here are some common informal expressions used for “to dance” in Spanish:

1. Bailar

Vamos a bailar esta noche. (Let’s go dancing tonight.)

Me encanta bailar salsa. (I love to dance salsa.)

¡Baila como nadie está mirando! (Dance like nobody’s watching!)

In informal contexts, “bailar” is still the most frequently used verb to express “to dance.” Native Spanish speakers tend to employ it comfortably in various informal settings, such as parties, clubs, or casual conversations with friends. So go ahead, put on your favorite music, and start “bailando”!

Tips and Regional Variations

Spanish is a diverse language spoken in many countries worldwide, each with its slight variations. Although “bailar” is universally understood and widely used across Spanish-speaking countries, it’s essential to note some regional variations in vocabulary and expressions related to dance:

1. Argentina

In Argentina, they commonly use the verb “danzar” alongside “bailar” to refer to formal or traditional dancing. For informal settings, “bailar” is still the go-to verb. Example:

Me gustaría aprender a danzar el tango. (I would like to learn to dance the tango.)

2. Mexico

In Mexico, you might also hear the verb “menear” used informally in some regions to mean “to dance.” It is usually associated with dancing in a sensual or flirtatious manner. Example:

Vamos a menear en esta fiesta. (Let’s dance at this party.)

3. Spain

In Spain, the verb “bailar” is prevalent across all contexts, but some regions use their own distinct vocabulary. For instance, in Andalusia, “bailar” is often replaced with “jamar” when speaking informally. Example:

¡Vámono’ a jamá’! (Let’s go dancing!)

These regional variations add flair and diversity to the language, making each unique culture even more fascinating. Feel free to explore these expressions further to enrich both your vocabulary and cultural understanding.


¡Fantástico! You’ve now mastered the versatility of saying “to dance” in Spanish. Remember, in formal situations, “bailar” is your best choice, whereas in informal contexts, it remains the most widely used verb. Additionally, you’ve gained insights into regional variations, which can add some colorful expressions to your dance vocabulary. So next time you hit the dance floor or engage in a Spanish conversation, you’ll confidently express your passion for dance. ¡Baila con alegría! (Dance with joy!)

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