The Spanish adverbs “ya” and “todavía” are usually taught together in Spanish courses.
It is a good idea, for both “ya” and “todavía”, to learn their meaning when followed and when not followed by the negative particle “no”.
In the case of “ya”:
- ya = already
- ya no = no longer, not anymore
In the case of “todavía”:
- todavía = still
- todavía no = still not, not yet
The safest place to put this words within the sentence is before the verb. Sometimes you may find them somewhere else (for example, at the end of the sentence), but the best place tends to be before the verb.
Of course, if that verb is preceded by direct object pronouns, indirect object pronouns or reflexive pronouns (pronouns such as “me”, “te”, “nos”, “se”… etc), you need to put “ya” and “todavía” right before those pronouns.
We will now see some example sentences. In these examples, the verb is highlighted in red. Also, if there are Direct Object, Indirect Object or Reflexive pronouns before the verb, they are highlighted in blue:
Example sentences with “ya”
¿Ya has comprado las entradas? = Did you already buy the tickets?
Sí, ya las he comprado = Yes, I already bought them.
Example sentences with “ya no”
María ya no fuma = María doesn’t smoke anymore.
Ya no los tenemos = We no longer have them.
Example sentences with “todavía”
Todavía vivo con mis padres = I still live with my parents.
Pablo todavía se acuerda de sus amigos = Pablo still remembers his friends.
Example sentences with “todavía no”
¿Todavía no habéis llegado? = Have you guys not arrived yet?
Todavía no me gustan sus películas = I still don’t like his movies