Spanish question: ¿Desde cuándo…?

tiempo desde cuando 2

In Spanish, there are many words and phrases to talk about time.

Desde usually means “since” and cuándo means “when”. But when they are put together, they mean “how long”.

Interesting, right?

Today you will understand how to use desde cuándo in Spanish, the tenses you need, what it means, and how to answer the question ¿desde cuándo?

Keep reading!

desde cuando intro spanish

What does “desde cuándo” mean?

Desde cuándo is a time phrase that helps us ask for how long an action has happened or when it started happening.

It can be understood as “for how long” or  “since when” (without any connotation) an action or state started.

¿Desde cuándo trabajas aquí?

How long have you worked here? / Since when have you worked here?

¿Desde cuándo vives solo?

For how long have you been living alone? / Since when have you lived alone?

spanish question desde cuando

How to use “desde cuándo” in Spanish

The structure of a question with desde cuándo is simple.

You just put a verb or subject+verb after it. But, be careful with the tense.

As you will see, although you want to talk about something that started in the past and continues to the present you use the present tense with desde cuándo in Spanish. That is a difference you have to be aware of.

Tip: Remember, you can use desde cuándo in negative questions when you mean the time when the action stopped, or the time when last happened.

¿Desde cuándo no visitas a Julio?

How long has it been since you last visited Julio? / When was the last time you visited Julio?

¿Desde cuándo él no trabaja?

For how long hasn´t he worked? / Since when hasn´t he worked?

desde cuando question spanish

How to answer “desde cuándo”

There are many forms to answer this question.

  • If you want to say the time the action started, you can use desde (since) followed by a time expression like:

Desde las 3 pm

Since 3 o’clock



El año pasado

Last year

La mañana

The morning

  • Most of the time you can use plus expressions like:

Desde hace


Mucho tiempo

A lot of time

Tres horas

Three hours

Un mes

A month

desde cuando spanish question

Do you want to see some examples?

Let’s see how to answer desde cuándo using desde and desde hace in this example:

P: ¿Desde cuándo tocas la guitarra?

Q: For how long have you played the guitar?

R: Desde los 5 años / Desde hace 10 años

A: Since I was 5 / For 10 years

Time expressions in Spanish are a wide subject, you learned some of them today, but desde and hace have many forms of use, and it’ll be useful to learn them, too!

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