What situation/context does it indicate 'Hasta dentro'?


  • La reunión no comienza hasta dentro de 3 horas.

Is it the same with "La reunión no comienza por tres horas" and 'hasta dentro' just means 'duration from now'?

Or is there some specific implication/situation indicated, such as it emphasizes the fact that 'the meeting will not happen' exists consistently for certainty?


2 Answers 2


Dentro here has to be seen as a whole with "de". From RAE:


~ de.

  1. loc. prepos. U. para indicar el término de un período de tiempo visto desde la perspectiva del presente. Dentro de dos meses.

Meaning that it takes a period of time based on the current moment.

So the closes translation to your sentence would be

The meeting will start in three hours.

The meeting will start in three hours from now.

Also, and regarding the possible implication/situation indicated, you can hear such way of saying times when there is an intention to emphatise the fact that it is not starting yet. So you could find yourself asking a bus driver "is the bus leaving now?" and he would respond "no, no sale hasta dentro de una hora", meaning "keep calm, this is not happening yet".

  • Thanks for the answer and providing the reference. So "la perspectiva del presente" could be the key when using 'haste dentro' indicating that the speaker has a focus in their mind on 'now and from now on'?
    – mon
    May 31, 2015 at 23:07
  • Yes, you explained it very well!
    – fedorqui
    Jun 1, 2015 at 8:04
  • Very precise and clear fedorqui. Good. Jun 1, 2015 at 18:44

This "HASTA" is a huge problem in Central América, where their proclivity is not only grammatical.

In a negative assertion you can say: no sale hasta dentro de dos horas. Meaning: is not leaving until two hours from now.

But since Central American is so wrongly diffuse in USA, many people hear: sale hasta dentro de dos horas... Meaning: is leaving during two more hours but they mean: doesn't leave until two more hours...

It is a stubborn mistake used by (unfortunately) everybody in Honduras, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua. Everybody, professionals, teachers, professors, bricklayers, etc.

Bottom line, "HASTA DENTRO" is plainly UNTIL

By the way, I am a volunteer in the poorest villages of C.A. since four years now, sleeping on the ground with the locals... then, don't try to talk about discrimination and arrogance on my part please... better yet, if you are from HN, ESal, GUA or NIC, just try to understand the difference between -try to explain- and -try to understand-... or at least -try to HEAR-. Sorry and thank you!

  • What is your argument for this supposed ungrammaticality? The usage is well recognized by even the RAE that while recommending avoiding the construction because other it means the exact opposite for other speakers of Spanish as it does for those in C.Am., doesn't dispute the correctness of it. May 31, 2015 at 22:01
  • yes, true, however, still widening the boundaries and we will end with no limits...
    – Livio
    Jun 2, 2015 at 4:54

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