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?

  • 1
    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

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.

  • 1
    I'm from Mexico, and I hear all three fairly frequently. I should add that el año que viene is much more common in the north, about equally common as the other two.
    – psosuna
    Nov 6 '18 at 1:00

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

  • 2
    This is not correct. It's correct and perfectly understandable to say "El año que viene" in January. 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. 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
  • "Saying el año que viene would suggest that the new year is approaching though." This seems like an extremely redundant statement, next year is always approaching, specially after reading your comment regarding this specific part of the answer.
    – Brian H.
    Nov 2 '18 at 8:43

I recently came across this talking about an upcoming Sunday event to be held on the 21st. The message was sent on the 7th. The writer referred to the event as el proximo domingo, his explanation was that el domingo que viene would be the 14th..... I'm in mainland Spain...

  • I’ve heard the two statements used similarly in Cuba.
    – Traveller
    Feb 20 '20 at 9:45
  • 1
    This contribution is very unclear. So, shall we understand that "próximo" does not mean "the next one" but "the one after the next one". I'm a native Spanish speaker and this doesn't make sense to me. Additionally, there are no clear explanations about the differences in meaning and usage of these terms. This is just an anecdote turned into answer (it should be a comment) and lacks an explanation for what it implies.
    – Diego
    Feb 20 '20 at 16:02
  • 1
    This usage is quite weird for me, and I live in mainland Spain too. It might be a very local usage, though.
    – Gorpik
    Feb 25 '20 at 9:22

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