31+ Ways To Say Sorry In Spanish For Any Situation

How do you say sorry in Spanish? If you type that on Google, then you’re going to get ‘lo siento’ as a direct translation.

In real life, people use way more than that. 

And context might even play a big role in saying the right thing. 

In this blog post, we’re going to go deep on how to say sorry in Spanish:

  • I’ll teach you the three most basic expressions to ask for an apology
  • You will learn how to master the differences between these expressions
  • And then we’ll go through 31+ Phrases that people often use to say sorry in Spanish

Plus I’ll give you a quick and useful guide so that you can know how people in Latin America ask for apologies.

The goal here is that you don’t go through uncomfortable situations without the needed tools for saying you’re sorry in Spanish when you need to.

Like my friend Mark…

Some years ago, he was at a family reunion when he accidentally opened the door of a bathroom where a lady was peeing. 

Poor Mark!

Every time I recall that day, I picture him running from the bathroom with his eyes closed and yelling:

“I’m sorry, I’m sorry!”

The lady didn’t speak English at all, and I could tell she got hot under the collar when she began to yell in Spanish.

So why am I telling you about this experience?

Well, my dear Amigo or Amiga, at the end of this post, I want you to answer this question:

For Mark: What would’ve been the best way to say sorry in Spanish?

Ready for the challenge? 

¡Aquí vamos! (Here we go!)

How Do I Say I’m Sorry In Spanish?

During dinner, Mark asked me:

—Pssstt… Diego, How do I say ‘I’m sorry’ in Spanish?

—Depends on how sorry you feel — I replied to him.

And I have to be honest…

I was making a big effort not to laugh so that the 63-year-old woman didn’t think we were making fun of her or something.

Now, Mark didn’t know what to say because in English, there was only one option for my ashamed friend, all he could say was: 

“I’m sorry”.

But there are a couple of details you need to keep in mind before translating this phrase to Spanish. 

Just let me introduce you to:

31+ Ways To Say Sorry In Spanish For Any Situation

couple of dolls made with amazon boxes holding a flower

In general, whenever you want to say ‘sorry’ in Spanish, you may use any of the following four expressions.

Of course, Spanish native speakers may use specific phrases to express this idea as well, but we’ll discuss them later in the post.

These are the basics for now: 

#1 Lo Siento:

This is often taught in Spanish lessons as the equivalent of the English “I’m sorry”.

However, some students overuse it when they say it for everything they feel sorry about.

If you do that, your Spanish won’t sound natural.

It’ll be more like an old Robot with an outdated system…

You know like a machine using pre-recorded sentences instead of our modern AI. 🤖

Yes, mis amigos…

I’m sure you don’t want to sound like the old Windows Assistant that gave the same answers over and over, right?

To avoid that, just have this in mind:

Use “Lo Siento” whenever you feel honest empathy for the other person. 

And notice that I’m not talking about strict rules here.

Why?

Because contexts and situations may vary, rules may change! 

The following are some contexts in which “Lo Siento” might work perfectly:

  1. When you want to express condolences in Spanish.
  2. Whenever you ask for an apology and you deeply feel bad about it. 
  3. When you feel regret for not following through with something you promised.

Related: How to Express Condolences in Spanish Like A Native Speaker: A Friend’s Guide For Times Of Grief 


#2 Lo Lamento

This expression comes from the verb “lamentar” or its reflexive version “lamentarse”.

This means “To Regret” in English.

In Spanish, though, native speakers use it as an “I’m Sorry”.

And if you think about it for a second, it makes sense!

If you’re sorry about something it means that you regret doing it.

Or if you’re sorry because of the loss of a loved one, then you regret the sad situation.

In other words, it works just like “Lo Siento”!

The difference lies only in the increased level of formality that “Lo Lamento” adds to your tone.

For instance:

  • Example: Lamento mucho haberme ido ayer. 
  • Translation: I’m really sorry about leaving yesterday.
  • Example: Sé que no debí traer a mi perro a casa de tus padres, lo lamento. 
  • Translation: I know I shouldn’t have brought my dog to your parent’s house, I’m sorry.
  • Example: Esuché que tu gato murió, lo lamento mucho.
  • Translation: I heard your cat died, I’m really sorry.

#3 Disculpe/ Disculpa/ Disculpen

This is a common way to ask for an apology as you do it with “excuse me” in English.

It comes from the reflexive reb “Disculparse”. 

And it’s commonly used with the conjugation the pronoun “usted” brings over it:

(Usted) Disculpe. 

For example, if you are in a business meeting and you want to interrupt someone who is talking, you can say:

  • Disculpe que lo interrumpa pero…. (I’m sorry to interrupt you but…).

Now, if you want to be a little more informal or show emotional “closeness” for the other person, you may use:

(Tú) Disculpa 

This one has the pronoun “tú” implicitly impacting the conjugation of the verb “Disculparse”.

And really…

I feel like the way Spanish speakers use this expression is to ask for quick apologies.

You know…

  • You know, like when you bump into someone,
  • You do something wrong but it’s not a big deal… 
  • As a way to call someone’s attention before giving information,
  • Or when you say “Excuse me” before asking a question,

Here are some examples:

  • Example: Disculpa, necesito pasar por aquí.
  • Translation: Excuse me, I need to pass over here.
  • Example: Mamá, disculpa por no lavarlos platos.
  • Translation: Mom, sorry for not doing the dishes.
  • Example: Disculpa, se te cayó el lápiz.
  • Translation: Excuse me, you dropped your pencil.
  • Example: Disculpa, ¿sabes dónde está el baño?
  • Translation: Excuse me, do you know where the bathroom is?

It’s important to mention that if you’re talking to a group of people then you should say:

Disculpen (In Latin America)

Or if you’re in Spain you need to use:

(Vosotros) “Disculpad”.

This is the same verb “Disculparse” impacted by the pronoun “Ustedes” or “Vosotros.

These are the plural for “you” in Spanish in Latin America and Spain respectively. 

You may use any of those when you want to say sorry to a group of people.

Here are some examples:

  • Example: Disculpen, ¿quién de ustedes es Juan?
  • Translation: Excuse me, who of you guys is Juan?
  • Example: Hola, disculpen… ¿Alguno de ustedes va para Medellín
  • Tranlsation: Hi, excuse me… is any of you going to Medellin?
  • Example: Disculpen chicos… ¿Pueden hacer silencio por favor?
  • Translation: Excuse me boys… can you be quiet please?

#4 Perdón/ Perdona/ Perdone/ Perdonen

This word means “To Forgive”.

And I think this is the one that carries a bit more load of emotion.

You know, it’s not the same if you just say I’m sorry than if you say:

Forgive me.

But why am I mixing “sorry” with “forgive me”?

Because native speakers might say I’m sorry in Spanish with the word:

Perdón.

But this isn’t a mistake!  

It’s just how Latinos or Spaniards use their language.

Sometimes, they even use “Perdón“ just like you use “Excuse me” in English. 

And when does this happen? 

Wasn’t “Disculpe” the way to go for quick apologies?

Yes, but Spanish speakers may randomly mix “Perdón” with “Disculpe” under this context.

However, using perdón as “Forgive me” might also happen when the situation requires it.

This means that it’s really important to pay attention to the context of conversations instead of being focused on rules.

And remember that this verb might also be influenced by the implicit pronunciation behind the conjugation.

Just like it happened with “Disculpe” up above. 

For “Perdón”, it would be:

  • (Usted) Perdone
  • (Tú) Perdona
  • (Ustedes) Perdonen… or in Spain (Vosotros) Perdonad

Here are some examples of using it for a quick apology:

  • Example: Perdona, ¿puedes pasarme mi teléfono por favor?
  • Translation: Excuse me, can you pass me my phone please?
  • Example: Perdón, ¿Tiene cambio de 20? 
  • Translation: Excuse me, do you have a change for 20?

And here are examples of when it means “To Forgive”:

  • Example: He cometido un gran error, perdoname por favor.
  • Translation: I’ve made a big mistake, forgive me, please.
  • Example: Perdona, sé que no debi decir eso sobre ti.
  • Translation: I’m sorry, I know I shouldn’t have said that about you.

How Will You Master These Differences?

Toy with the form of an emojy placed above a collection of boxes with the word sorry written on it

What we’ve covered so far today may help you make a difference between the 4 basic ways to say I’m sorry in Spanish.

Here’s a brief summary:

  • Lo siento & Lo lamento: Use them whenever you feel honest empathy for the other person and choose “Lo lamento” if you want to sound formal.
  • Disculpe: Use it for a quick apology.
  • Perdón: Use it as well for quick apologies or when the context requires it for “Forgive me”.

The real question now is:

What can you do so you can use these expressions spontaneously so that you always use them in the correct context?

Frankly, I’ve seen many students studying hard for these differences.

Days later, they talk to me in Spanish repeating “Lo siento” every time they mean “I’m Sorry” 😩

So really, what can you do?

Well, I found that the best solution for this problem is to get exposure to the language in spontaneous and natural contexts.

Experts call doing this “comprehensible input” 

Like if you were a computer getting input! 👾

 And the best format for that is to get it through listening or reading.


Related: ¿Qué Es “Comprehensible Input”?… El Método Definitivo Para Aprender Español


The best resources that do just that are:

  • Reading books you like,
  • Listening to podcasts or audio stories in Spanish,
  • And Taking audio courses that focus on stories.

You may find some of those in my resources page, so be sure to check them out:

Resources To Learn Spanish

Anyway…

Another good way to master the difference between these expressions is by memorizing the phrases that native speakers use.

For this reason, I gathered a list of actionable phrases that you can use immediately to say sorry in Spanish:

How To Say Sorry In Spanish According To Context

As we’ve been discussing so far…

You need to make sure the expression you use to say sorry in Spanish matches the situation you’re experiencing at the moment.

You know, like when you say you’re sorry about a mistake.

Or when you ask for a quick apology.

I arranged the following list according to the context so that you know when to use each phrase:

When You Do Something Wrong 

No matter who you’re talking to…

  • Your family, 
  • Your spouse, 
  • Or friends 

There’s always a possibility that, at some point, you’re going to have to ask for an apology.

We’re humans and we make mistakes, so whenever that happens you may go ahead and use these phrases:

Man covering his faces with his hands

#1 Perdóname

This comes from the verb “perdonar”.

Now, “Perdóname” translates as “Forgive me”.

This is pretty accurate when you feel very sorry about doing something wrong.

The kind of apology that you’re going to see in your favorite Telenovela.

Like when that handsome gentleman made a mistake and now he wants the woman of his dreams back.


Related: How to say handsome in Spanish using 26 different ways to show your crush how much you like him


But it doesn’t have to be so dramatic! 😅

Here are some examples of how these expressions would fit in real-life contexts:

  • Context: Father asking for an apology to his daughter
  • Example: Sé que no debí gritarte frente a tus amigos, perdóname por favor. 
  • Translation: I know you shouldn’t yell at yourself in front of your friends, please forgive me.
  • Context: Friend saying sorry for not showing up at the appointed time
  • Example: Mira, debí haber llegado temprano; perdóname.
  • Translation: Look, I should have arrived early; I’m sorry.
  • Context: Girlfriend regrets not trusting her boyfriend.
  • Example: Perdóname por no confiar en ti.
  • Translation: Forgive me for not trusting you.

Now, a variation for “perdóname” is:

#2 Perdón Por…

Different to “Forgive me”, this is something more like:

“Forgive me for…”.

This is the way to point at a specific mistake and then ask for an apology.

Like this: 

  • Example: Perdón por gritarte cuando rompiste el vaso.
  • Translation: Sorry for yelling at you when you broke the glass.
  • Example: Mamá quiero decirte algo… perdón por no llamar para decir que llegaría tarde a casa.
  • Translation: Mom, I want to tell you something… sorry for not calling to say I would be late home.
  • Example: Mira Alicia, perdón por no prestarte dinero, pero no lo haré porque se que no lo usarás bien.
  • Translation: Look Alicia, I’m sorry for not lending you money, but I won’t because I know you won’t use it well.

It’s also very common to hear native speakers using the verb “perdonar” in a more “poetic way”.

Like this:

#3 Te Pido Que Me Perdones Por Favor

This means “I ask you to forgive me please”.

This might sound a little too wordy in English, but it’s not in Spanish.

 for Latinos, this is a nice way to say sorry.

 it sounds honest and like you really mean it.

This is perfect for when you actually mess things up.

 For instance:

  • Context: Asking for an apology after drinking heavily the night before.
  • Example: No puedo creer que te haya dicho eso, te pido que me perdones por favor.
  • Translation: I can’t believe I told you that, please forgive me.
  • Context: Saying sorry for not answering friend’s calls.
  • Example: La verdad es que no me he sentido bien y por eso no te quería contestar; te pido que me perdones por favor.
  • Translation: The truth is that I haven’t felt well and that’s why I didn’t want to answer you; I ask you to forgive me, please.
  • Context: Father saying sorry to wife for not picking up kids at school (AKA Fletcher Reeds From Jim Carry’s Liar liar movie. 😅
  • Example: Tengo una reunión de trabajo y no puedo recoger al niño en la escuela, te pido que me perdones por favor.
  • Translation: I have a work meeting and I can’t pick up the child from school, please forgive me.

Now, here’s a variation for this phrase:

#3 De Todo Corazón Te Pido Perdón

This heartfelt phrase translates to

“With all my heart I ask your forgiveness”. 

It’s a sincere and profound way to express remorse in Spanish. 

This apology delves deep into the emotions, emphasizing the genuine regret one feels for their actions.

it’s not just a request for forgiveness; it’s a plea that comes from the very core of one’s being.

Examples:

  • Context: Apologizing to a close friend for betraying his/her trust.
  • Example: Sé que te defraudé, y de todo corazón te pido perdón. 
  • Translation: I know I let you down, and with all my heart I ask for your forgiveness. 
  • Context: Seeking forgiveness from a partner after a heated argument
  • Example: Mi amor, no deberíamos habernos dicho esas cosas. De todo corazón te pido perdón por herirte con mis palabras. 
  • Translation: My love, we shouldn’t have said those things to each other. With all my heart I apologize for hurting you with my words.
  • Context: Apologizing to a family member for a long-standing misunderstanding
  • Example: Tía, me duele que nuestra relación esté tan afectada. De todo corazón te pido perdón por todo malentendido. 
  • Translation: Auntie, it hurts me that our relationship is so affected. With all my heart I apologize for any misunderstanding.

#4 Lamento Lo Que Pasó

This simple yet sincere phrase translates to “I’m sorry for what happened”. 

It reflects a genuine sense of sorrow for the situation or actions that caused hurt or disappointment.

Honestly, this is something I wouldn’t say unless the thing I regret was serious. 

Just my opinion though.

Example:

  • Context: Apologizing to a coworker for a mistake at work
  • Example: Lamento mucho lo que pasó en la reunión. No era mi intención causar confusiones.
  • Translation: I am very sorry for what happened at the meeting. It was not my intention to cause confusion.

#5 Discúlpame De Todo Corazón

Even though we’re using “Disculpar” which I told you to use it for quick apologies…

In this phrase, Spanish speakers interpret it as “forgive me”.

The phrase translates to:

“Forgive me from the bottom of my heart.” 

It conveys a profound request for forgiveness, emphasizing the depth of remorse and the sincerity of the apology.

Example:

  • Context: Apologizing to a friend after a disagreement
  • Example: Discúlpame de todo corazón por nuestras palabras hirientes. 
  • Translation: Forgive me with all my heart for our hurtful words.

#6 Qué Pena Contigo

Turns out that the literal translation for this expression is:

“What a pity with you”.

However, we can’t rely on a translator with this phrase.

Spanish speakers use this phrase to emphasize the fact that they’re feeling sorry for what they are about to say.

You know like when you are aware that your next words are going to be hurtful or annoying for the other person.

So you say something like “I’m sorry for saying this but…”( and then he comes the annoying part)

For instance 

  • Context: Giving your opinion but the way someone else treats his mother.
  • Example: Qué pena contigo, pero no estoy de acuerdo con que trates a tu mamá de esa manera.
  • Translation: I’m sorry for you, but I don’t agree with you treating your mom that way.
  • Context: Showing that you don’t trust the other person on Money Matters.
  • Example: Tengo que pedirte algo importante… qué pena contigo, pero necesito contar el dinero otra vez.
  • Translation: I have to ask you something important… I’m sorry for you, but I need to count the money again.

People might also use this phrase to express embarrassment.

But for that context, it would mean something like:

 “I’m so embarrassed about this or that with you”.

It’s all a matter of context so don’t worry about misunderstanding it.

Let me just give you an example so you can see the difference:

  • Context: Accidentally breaking a glass at your friend’s house.
  • Example: Soy tan torpe, qué pena contigo, voy a pagarte el vaso.
  • Translation: I’m so stupid, I’m sorry, I’m going to pay for the glass.

Now, you might also hear this variation for “qué pena contigo”:

#7 Qué Vergüenza Contigo

This translates to “What a shame with you”, but people use it as:

“I’m really sorry”

It works exactly as the previous phrase but adds more intensity to the idea of “sorry”

Let me just show you the same examples from the previous point, but using this phrase:

  • Example: Qué vergüenza contigo, pero no estoy de acuerdo con que trates a tu mamá de esa manera.
  • Translation: I’m really sorry, but I don’t agree with you treating your mom that way.
  • Example: Tengo que pedirte algo importante… qué vergüenza contigo, pero necesito contar el dinero otra vez.
  • Translation: I have something important to ask you… I’m really sorry, but I need to count the money again.

Just a little side note:

Native speakers use this phrase and number 6 of this list for when you want to be sarcastic. 

You know, like when you mean:

“I’m sorry… but I’m not really sorry at all!

#8 Te Ofrezco Una Disculpa

This phrase translates to “I offer you an apology.” 

It’s a formal way to express regret and request forgiveness.

It reminds me of Jim Carrey’s Almighty Bruce movie When he’s trying to fix his mistakes.

When he goes to Evan Baxter for a handshake and asks for an honest apology.

That would be a perfect context to say this phrase!

Here are some examples:

  • Context: Apologizing to a colleague for missing an important deadline
  • Example: Te ofrezco una disculpa por no cumplir con el plazo. 
  • Translation: I’m sorry for not making it to the deadline. 
  • Context: Kid saying sorry for punching his classmate in the face.
  • Example: Te ofrezco una disculpa por golpearte, espero que sigamos siendo amigos.
  • Translation: I’m sorry for punching you, I hope we can keep being friends. 

#9 Sé Que Te Debo Una Disculpa

This phrase isn’t exactly saying I’m sorry in Spanish.

Instead, this is the perfect introduction for when you want to say sorry.

If we translate it, it would be something like

 “I know I owe you an apology” 

It acknowledges the debt of an apology and expresses willingness to make amends.

Example:

  • Context: Apologizing to a sibling for borrowing something without permission.
  • Example: Sé que te debo una disculpa por tomar prestada tu computadora sin permiso. 
  • Translation: I know I owe you an apology for borrowing your computer without permission.
  • Context: Starting a conversation to offer an apology
  • Example: Dije muchas cosas hirientes ayer, sé que te debo una disculpa…
  • Translation: I said a lot of hurtful things yesterday, I know I owe you an apology…

#10 Lamento Mucho Haberte…

This phrase translates to:

“I deeply regret having (done something)”

It’s used to express profound remorse for a specific action or behavior.

Now, notice and keep in mind that the structure of this sentence is always the same:

  1. Use haber in the present tense using the reflexive
  2. The verb of the action that you remorse uses the past participle 

This way you’re pointing at a specific event in the past that you really regret. 

Example:

  • Context: Apologizing to a partner for saying hurtful things.
  • Example: Lamento mucho haber dicho esas palabras hirientes.
  • Translation: I’m really sorry for having said those hurtful things. 

#11 Siento Mucho Baber…

This phrase is used the same way as the previous sentence.

It just uses a different verb: 

“sentir” (to feel).

This is another way to communicate a heartfelt apology for a specific action or mistake.

Example:

  • Context: Apologizing to a friend for breaking a promise
  • Example: Siento mucho haber roto mi promesa de acompañarte. 
  • Translation: I’m very sorry for breaking my promise to accompany you.

#12 Cometí Un Error

With this expression, you are acknowledging that you made a mistake.

It means:

“I made a mistake”. 

It’s a straightforward admission of fault and is often the first step in offering an apology.

Example:

  • Context: Acknowledging a mistake made in a previous conversation
  • Example: Cometí un error cuando dije que no te amaba.
  • Translation: I made a mistake when I said that I didn’t love you.

When You Offer A Small Apology

The 12 previous phrases that I just mentioned may be very handful to you for when you do something wrong, offend someone, make a mistake and you need to ask for an apology.

However, if you just bumped into someone and you want to say sorry for hitting them unintentionally…

Or if you stepped on someone’s shoe accidentally then you might go along with the following phrases:

#13 Disculpe

#14 Mil disculpas 

#15 Qué pena

Just imagine you are in a concert, and now after getting some beverages for you and your date, you want to go back to your seat.

Then you need to make your way through a big crowd and ask for quick apologies as you walk cautiously.

To complete this Mission you may say any of these three phrases and switch between them as you walk among people.

You know, something like:

“Disculpe… voy pasando, mil disculpa…. Qué pena” (Sorry, coming through, excuse me, I’m sorry).

And for a situation like this, a common way to say I’m sorry in Spanish is also with the phrase:

#16 Con permiso 

It literally translates to “With Permission”, but it’s often used to offer an apology when asking someone to move so that you can pass through. 

Example:

“Con permiso… necesito pasar… perdón… disculpe… qué pena” (Sorry, I need to pass, I’m sorry, excuse me, I’m sorry).

When Offering Condolences

Man holding flowers at a cemetery

Saying sorry isn’t just for apologies.

You might also need to say sorry in Spanish when someone experiences the death of a loved one.

Now, expressing condolences involves conveying deep sympathy and sorrow for someone’s loss. 

Here are some heartfelt phrases you can use:

#17 Lo Siento Muchísimo 

This phrase translates to “I’m very sorry” and conveys profound regret and sympathy for the person’s situation. 

It reflects genuine empathy for their pain.

#18 Lo Lamento Mucho

Similar to the previous phrase, this means “I deeply regret it”. 

It signifies a sincere acknowledgment of the sorrowful event and a genuine sense of mourning with the person affected.

#19 Siento Mucho Tu Pérdida

Translating to “I’m deeply sorry for your loss”, this phrase expresses personal condolences and emphasizes the understanding of the grief the person is experiencing.

#20 No Sabes Cuánto Lo Siento 

This translates to:

“You don’t know how sorry I am”. 

It emphasizes the depth of the speaker’s empathy, indicating that the extent of their sorrow cannot be fully expressed in words.

Offering condolences requires sensitivity and compassion.

Using these phrases can help communicate your genuine sympathy and provide comfort to those who are grieving.

In fact, these are just a few phrases you can use.

I wrote a complete blog post with way more phrases you can use whenever you need to offer condolences.

You may read it in the following link:


Related: How to Express Condolences in Spanish Like A Native Speaker: A Friend’s Guide For Times Of Grief


When You Say You’re Sorry Before You Justify Yourself

Sometimes, apologies are preceded by an explanation or justification. 

In Spanish, there are polite and considerate ways to do this while acknowledging the need for forgiveness. 

Here are some phrases you can use when you’re about to explain yourself after saying you’re sorry.

#21 Usted me va a disculpar, pero…

#22 Me vas a perdonar, pero…

Translating to: 

“You are going to forgive me, but…”

These phrases are used when the speaker is about to justify his/her actions. 

At the same time, these two last phrases acknowledge the need for forgiveness in advance.

These are polite ways to ask for understanding before presenting your explanation or reasoning.

You might also say:

#23 Ya me disculparán, pero…”

This phrase means “You will forgive me, but…” 

It implies a sense of confidence in the listener’s ability to forgive, even before the explanation is given.

It also shows a willingness to make amends.

Here are some examples: 

  • Example:Ya me disculparán, pero odio el color de las paredes de tu casa.
  • Translation: You will forgive me but I hate the color of the walls of your house.
  • Example: Usted me va a disculpar, pero su voz me da dolor de cabeza.
  • Translation: You will forgive me, but your voice gives me a headache. 

Using these phrases demonstrates politeness and consideration for the other person’s perspective while expressing regret and preparing to explain the situation.

Perfect for those moments of arguing 😅

Some More Expressions You Need To Say Sorry in Spanish

typewriter typing sorry

Apologizing in Spanish goes beyond just saying “I’m sorry.” 

Here are more essential phrases and expressions to help you navigate the delicate art of asking for forgiveness:

#24 Hacer Las Paces

Translating to “to make peace,” this phrase signifies a willingness to reconcile and mend the relationship after a conflict. 

It reflects the intention to move past the disagreement and restore harmony between parties.

For example: 

  • Example: Vengo a hacer las paces, no quiero pelear más contigo.
  • Translation: I’m here today to make peace, I don’t want to fight with you anymore.

#25 Disculparse

This is a general verb that means “to apologize.” 

It is a formal way to express regret for one’s actions and is commonly used in various situations where an apology is necessary.

For example: 

  • Context: Mother telling child to apologize to his friend.
  • Example: No puedes tratar así a tus amigos, necesitar disculparte.
  • Translation:  You can’t treat your friends like that, you need to apologize.

#26 Pedir Perdón

This phrase translates to:

“Ask for forgiveness”. 

It works exactly as “Disculparse”, and it emphasizes the act of seeking pardon.

Now, asking for forgiveness involves more than just asking for an apology.

It conveys the need to make up for the other person…

So this phrase is not a joke!

For instance:

  • Context: Mother telling child to apologize to his friend.
  • Example: Ve y pídele perdón a tu amiga por tirar su pastel, y luego le das otro paste.
  • Translation:  Go and ask for forgiveness from your friend for dropping her cake, and then you can give her another.

#27 Arreglar Las Cosas

Meaning “to fix things”, this expression suggests a commitment to resolving the issue and making amends. 

It implies taking action to rectify the situation and demonstrates a genuine desire to set things right.

It’s very calming for couples who had serious problems and now they want to make things up.

  • Example: Amor, quiero arreglar las cosas contigo y no discutir más.
  • Translation: Honey I want to fix things with you and not argue anymore.
  • Example: Tienes que dejar tu orgullo y arreglar las cosas con Marcela. 
  • Translation: You have to leave your pride behind and fix things Marcela.
  • Example: Voy a tratar de arreglar las cosas con Francisco, no quiero que me odie.
  • Translation: I’m going to try to fix things with Francisco, I don’t want him to hate me. 

How To Say Sorry In Spanish Using “Vos”

Whenever you want to say sorry in Spanish, you may use any of the previous phrases I’ve mentioned today.

Of course, you need to use each sentence according to the context.

Now, in certain countries in Latin America, people use the pronoun “vos”.

It works just as the pronoun “Tú”, and you may hear it in countries like:

  • Argentina
  • Colombia
  • Costa Rica
  • Venezuela
  • The south of Mexico
  • Uruguay
  • And some others.

When this happens, you need to keep in mind that the verbs for saying sorry in Spanish will turn into:

#28 Perdona → Perdoná

#29 Perdóname → Perdonáme

#30 Disculpa →  Disculpá 

#31 Discúlpame → Disculpáme

#32 Qué pena contigo → Qué Pena Con Vos 

#33 Qué vergüenza contigo → Qué Vergüenza Con Vos 

#34 Usted me va a disculpar pero… →  Vos Me Vas A Disculpar, Pero…


Related: 4 Totally Different ways to say “For you” in Spanish


This is one of the many ways that people from my city (Medellín) use to say sorry in Spanish. 

We use them, especially with close friends or family members. 

How Do People Say Sorry In Latin America

Latina girl wearing a typical dress from her region

As you probably already know, Latinos are warm and welcoming people.

This, though, might become a disadvantage because sometimes intense feelings might get us in trouble.

All this may turn into opportunities to say sorry in Spanish, which of course, gets influenced by culture as well. 

So if you ever need to apologize to people in Latin America, try to fit the way they do it.

You know…

  • The tone,
  • Body language,
  • The phrases,
  • And even the gestures.

The goal is that you rescue those valuable friendships from uncomfortable misunderstandings.

Here’s some advice to say sorry like a Latino does:


Related: 20 Funny Spanish Phrases That Native Speakers Use In Their Daily Conversations


Watch Your Tone

Remember that if you’re the one who needs to apologize, this isn’t a time to be angry or to justify yourself.

Let the other person show his or her negative feelings if he or she needs to.

In fact, my dear amigo or amiga, it’s fair for them to let you know how bad you hurt them. 

Don’t you think?… 

Whatever the case, don’t overreact! 

Just give the other person time or even space to think about your apology.

Be Genuine and Sincere

If you’re sorry, say it for real.

But don’t lie or give excuses for your bad behavior. 

Latinos are people of intense emotions so if you get caught up lying, likely, you’ll make everything worse. 

Especially if you need to say sorry in a relationship, know that every lie you say will be uncovered at some point.

And that my dear amigo or amiga is something that will break the relationship forever!

So, just be careful with your words, and try to:

  • Avoid justifications
  • Acknowledge your mistakes
  • Take responsibility for your errors

Doing this will always give a good score before actually saying sorry or even asking for forgiveness.  

Just leave pride behind you bad boy! (or girl!) 😅

Behave Like You Really Mean You’re Sorry

After saying sorry, the other person must notice you changed. 

You know…

Obviously, you’re lying if you say you’re sorry about eating that cookie and then you steal it again. 😅

You gotta change mi amigo or amiga! 

In fact, you need to show interest in the other person’s feelings. 

Latinos usually…

  • Offer an apology gift
  • Send an honest text message 
  • Or even visit the offended person just to talk face to face!

These efforts will pay off for sure if you’re honest.

How To Say Sorry in Spanish

Phew… we’ve covered so much today!

To be honest with you, I never thought this blog post would turn out to be so long.

But I think this is filled up with really good advice. 

The bottom line here is that the best way to say sorry in Spanish is by imitating the way Spanish speakers do it. 

Use the phrases I taught you today.

We went through 34 phrases that people use in everyday life.

Also, remember that context matters and that it’s not just about words. 

You have to fit your “sorry” to your behavior. 

You know that you want to recover that friendship, right? 

It’s all worth it if you have good friends already.

Just go ahead, pick up the phone, and call that special person you need back into your life. 

Start by saying: 

“Quiero arreglar las cosas” 

You already know what that means, right? 😃

Also, if you know more phrases to say Sorry in Spanish, make sure you drop them in the comments below. 

I would be glad to see what else we can include in this post.

¡Nos vemos después!

Oh, and don’t forget about my friend mark!

After going through today’s post…

What’s the best way for him to say he’s sorry for the awkward moment he went through? 

Let me know in the comments below 👇🏻

Diego Cuadros is a blogger and a Spanish online teacher. He uses stories to help Spanish lovers understand fast-speaking native speakers, so they don't freeze and panic in conversations.

1 thought on “31+ Ways To Say Sorry In Spanish For Any Situation”

  1. I have been practicing my favorite language of Spanish since 2002. You would think I could understand when a native Spanish speaker talks rapidly, pero desafortunadamente, es imposible para mi a entender cuando una persona se habla
    demasiado rápido en español.

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