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I have seen the expression, “next year” translated as both “el año que viene” and “el año próximo.” Are there regional preferences? Which one is more natural and why? Which translation is particularly used in Mexico?

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el año siguiente (the following year) is also appropriate. – Flimzy Apr 4 '14 at 18:32
Thanks for the suggestion. I am, however, trying to find out which one of all these options is the most commonly used in regular conversations by the country. For example, is one preferred over the others in Mexico as compared to Spain, and so on… – TheLearner Apr 4 '14 at 18:43
up vote 2 down vote accepted

In Mexico, I think hear el próximo año the most, followed by el año siguiente. I don't know if I've ever heard el año que viene, but I would understand it if I did.

But Mexico is a big place, and it may vary widely by region.

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They are both interchangeable. Both will be understood to be the same thing.
Everything depends on the speaker, and what he/she wishes to say.

Saying el año que viene would suggest that the new year is approaching though.
That is the only difference.
el año próximo is a very generic way to say next year.

año que viene would be more like The upcoming year

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This is not correct. It's correct and perfectly understandable to say "El año que viene" in January. – Adriano Varoli Piazza Apr 4 '14 at 17:54
Why is it incorrect? The last time I checked, the upcoming month is always the next month. I never said that el año que viene could not be used; in fact, I sad they were interchangeable. Upcoming is a word used to describe something approaching, and every month is always approaching the other. – dockeryZ Apr 4 '14 at 19:10
Sorry. I took the sentence "Saying el año que viene would suggest that the new year is approaching though." as meaning "...would suggest that the new year is close". That's what I say it's incorrect: "el año que viene" is a valid phrase both in January and December. – Adriano Varoli Piazza Apr 4 '14 at 21:45
No idea why I mentioned months in that last comment. I meant to say year. – dockeryZ Apr 7 '14 at 15:41

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