Referring to Age in Spanish


How to ask someone’s age or say your own age in Spanish

In Spanish, we use the verb tener (to have) to talk about age. In English the verb “to be” is used when expressing age, for example, in English, we say: I’m 13, you are 20 years old. In Spanish the verb “tener” is used, which literally translates to “I have 13 years” rather than “I am 13”.

Example: I have 13 years: Tengo 13 años. (I’m 13 years old)

Now let’s look at the verb tener and how it is used while expressing age:

Yo tengo 13 años – I have 13 years (I’m 13 years old)

Tú tienes 20 – You have (singular informal, familiar) 20 ( You are 20)

Él / Ella / Usted tiene 15 – He / She / You (singular formal) have 15 ( He/She is 15, You are 15)

Nosotros tenemos 50 años – We have 50 years (We are 50 years old)

Vosotros tenéis 16 – You have 16 (plural informal) (You are 16)

Ellos / Ellas / Ustedes tienen 5 años – They (male or mixed gender) / They (female)/ You (plural formal) have 5 years (They/You are 5 years old)

Asking someone’s age in Spanish

To ask how old someone is, you can use either the informal tú form (tienes), or the formal usted form (tiene).

  • ¿Cuántos años tienes? (informal) – (How old are you?)
  • ¿Cuántos años tiene usted? (formal) -(How old are you?)

For asking the age of another person:

¿Cuántos años + tiene + person?

  • ¿Cuántos años tiene el/ella? – (How old is he/she?)
  • ¿Cuántos años tiene John? – (How old is John?)

Note: We don’t have to add the años when we talk about our age. We can just say “Tengo 13” just like in English where we might just say “I am 13” rather than “I am 13 years old”.

Note: for babies who haven’t completed their first year,  meses (months) are used instead of años (years).


  • El bebé tiene 6 meses. (The baby is 6 months old)
  • Ella tiene 9 meses. (She is 9 months)