How to correctly ask about the percentage? Is por ciento handled as singular or as plural?

  • It would be singular if you're asking about one statistic, and plural if you're asking about more than one, e.g. What are the percentages of passing grades and superior grades? ¿Cuáles son los porcentajes de resultados aceptables y resultados excelentes? May 29, 2019 at 4:33

1 Answer 1


You don't use por ciento to ask, you use porcentaje:

¿Qué porcentaje de alumnos son niños?
¿Cuáles son los porcentajes de nitrógeno y oxígeno en el aire?
¿Cuánto porcentaje de grasa tienen las salchichas?

Or tanto por ciento (see 12th entry in the dictionary):

¿Qué tanto por ciento de sal debería haber en la receta del pan?

  • Is there a general rule where you use "qué tanto" and where "cuánto(s)"? May 28, 2019 at 13:03
  • @HonzaZidek that's probably a regional thing, as I almost never use "qué tanto" (I'm from Spain), but in other countries it is probably more used. You should ask a separate question if you are interested.
    – Charlie
    May 28, 2019 at 13:11
  • 1
    Done, see spanish.stackexchange.com/q/30545/11155 May 28, 2019 at 13:19
  • @walen Thanks for your note, I did not know it, since I am aware of the fact that "Qué tanto" is used instead of "Cuánto(s)" sometimes. May 29, 2019 at 7:58

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