Why does sentence one use the verb estar and sentence two use the verb ser? Both translations are from google translate.

¿Cómo estuvo tu fin de semana? = How was your weekend?

¿Que tal fue tu noche? = How was your night?

Assuming both are referring to a date/time in the past, and that the person who is answering these questions likely wont change their opinion of these two dates, I would assume they would both use the verb ser.

  • 4
    ¿Que tal fue tu noche? = How was your night? Would be better translated in this context as "How did your night GO? " That is this sentence is using IR not SER. It can be confusing because ir and ser have the same preterite forms.
    – Karlomanio
    Commented Oct 29, 2018 at 14:35
  • When the temporary/permanent distinction of ser/estar is not relevant, as in this context, the choice between them is usually idiomatic. Surprisingly, the most usual verb would be "ser" in the equivalent sentence in Portuguese (como foi sua noite?), a language very similar to Spanish. Commented Nov 29, 2019 at 1:08

2 Answers 2


It doesn't matter if you say:

¿Que tal estuvo tu noche? or ¿Que tal fue tu noche?

Both mean the same, but fue is a little bit less formal.

Also notice that fue in this case, comes from the verb ir in the third person in the simple perfect preterite.

This is because the sentence means something like: how did your night go?

So, to end, the best verb to use in my opinion is the verb estar if you want to be formal, and ir if you want to be more informal.

The other person will usually answer using the verb estar.

Hope I helped you.

  • Gracias @DGaleano por el edit, pero he revertido un pequeño cambio que aplicaste sobre los verbos para ponerlos * (negrita supongo), al estar en code format no se aplica, igualmente no me gusta como queda de esa manera, pero aprecio las correcciones del ingles.
    – ntzz
    Commented Oct 30, 2018 at 14:56
  • Tienes toda la razón. No vi que habían quedado los ** en lugar de la negrita. Es porque nunca uso "code" porque no me gusta. Como lo dejaste queda muy bien. Saludos.
    – DGaleano
    Commented Oct 30, 2018 at 16:57
  • 1
    Esto sobre la formalidad relativa de los dos verbos, ¿es tu experiencia personal? Porque pienso que quizá pueda ser algo regional. Para mí no hay tal diferencia entre los dos ejemplos, y si acaso, más bien usaría estuvo (o anduvo como dice otra respuesta) antes que fue.
    – pablodf76
    Commented Nov 2, 2018 at 14:42
  • @pablodf76 Pues hablo desde mi experiencia y desde la de un amigo semiologo, igualmente como bien dices, podría aceptarse ambas y ser igual o más aceptado en otras regiones otras formas.
    – ntzz
    Commented Nov 5, 2018 at 7:19

¿Cómo estuvo tu fin de semana? = How was your weekend?

¿Que tal fue tu noche? = How was your night?

"estuvo" suggests duration, similar to "how did you spend your weekend," with some stress being laid on the different moments experienced throughout the weekend, while "fue" points to the result, similar to "how did your night turn out?"

As stated in Karlomanio's comment, "fue" is ambiguous, as it can be the past simple of the verb "ser" (be) or "ir" (go). In the latter case, we can also use the ver "andar," another verb of movement:

  • ¿Cómo anduvo tu noche?

When "ser" is implied, the idea conveyed is that of result. When "ir" is implied (or "andar" is used), the concept involved is that of process, as is the case with "estar".

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