Cruzar in Spanish: Conjugation, Meaning & Uses

In this short guide, we will cover the following topics for ‘cruzar’ in Spanish:

  1. What does ‘Cruzar’ mean?
  2. ‘Cruzar’ Conjugations
  3. How to Use ‘Cruzar’ in Spanish
  4. Expressions & Idioms with ‘Cruzar’
  5. Synonyms of ‘Cruzar’ in Spanish

What does ‘Cruzar’ mean?

‘Cruzar’ means ‘to cross‘, ‘to intertwine‘, ‘to go through, or ‘to go across‘. As a result, in Spanish, cruzar is used to express that someone or something crosses from someplace to another. In its reflexive form, cruzarse describes that two people meet by chance.   

  1. When talking about going through one place to another, it means ‘to cross’, ‘to go across’ or ‘to go through’. 
  2. When describing that someone runs into another person, it is used as ‘to run into’, ‘to bump into’.

‘Cruzar’ Conjugations 

In Spanish, there are some irregularities in the conjugation of the verb ‘cruzar’. These changes include changing the ‘z’ for a ‘c’ in the preterite, present subjunctive and imperative.

graphic showing cruzar stem changes

Given that these irregularities are only applied in these tenses, for the rest of the conjugations, you’ll eliminate cruzar’s -AR ending and just add the corresponding endings for each tense. Don’t forget that, with some meanings, this verb will require you to use a reflexive pronoun


Present tense conjugation

YocruzoI cross
cruzasYou cross
Él / Ella / UstedcruzaHe/She crosses
NosotroscruzamosWe cross
VosotroscruzáisYou cross
Ustedes / Ellos / EllascruzanThey/You cross

Preterite tense conjugation

In the preterite tense, ‘cruzar’ has some spelling changes for yo. In other words, this pronoun will change the ‘z’ for a ‘c’. So even though you use ‘cruc’ for this person, the rest of the pronouns will use the regular stem ‘cruz’. For both stems, you’ll simply add the endings below: 

YocrucéI crossed
cruzasteYou crossed
Él / Ella / UstedcruzóHe/She crossed
NosotroscruzamosWe crossed
VosotroscruzasteisYou crossed
Ustedes / Ellos / EllascruzaronThey/You crossed

Imperfect tense conjugation

YocruzabaI crossed
cruzabasYou crossed
Él / Ella / UstedcruzabaHe/She crossed
NosotroscruzábamosWe crossed
VosotroscruzabaYou crossed
Ustedes / Ellos / EllascruzabanThey/You crossed

Future tense conjugation

The future and conditional tenses in Spanish use the whole verb in the infinitive form. That means you will keep ‘cruzar’ and then just add the part that I’ve underlined for you.

YocruzaréI will cross
cruzarásYou will cross
Él / Ella / UstedcruzaráHe/She will cross
NosotroscruzaremosWe will cross
VosotroscruzaréisYou will cross
Ustedes / Ellos / EllascruzaránThey/You will cross

Conditional tense conjugation

YocruzaríaI would cross
cruzaríasYou would cross
Él / Ella / UstedcruzaríaHe/She would cross
NosotroscruzaríamosWe would cross
VosotroscruzaríaisYou would cross
Ustedes / Ellos / EllascruzaríanThey/You would cross

Progressive Tenses

graphic showing how to conjugate cruzar in progressive tenses in spanish

Patty está cruzando la calle. 
Patty is crossing the street. 

Perfect Tenses

conjugation chart showing how to conjugate cruzar in indicative perfect tenses in spanish

Luke no ha cruzado porque está esperando a Mindy. 
Luke hasn’t crossed because he’s waiting for Mindy. 

¿Dónde estaban? Creí que ya habían cruzado. 
Where were you? I thought you guys had crossed already. 

Cruzar Subjunctive Conjugations

Present subjunctive conjugation

In the present subjunctive, cruzar is irregular. This means that, instead of using ‘z’ on your stem, you’ll use ‘cruc’ for all your pronouns.  

YocruceTo cross
crucesTo cross
Él / Ella / UstedcruceTo cross
NosotroscrucemosTo cross
VosotroscrucéisTo cross
Ustedes / Ellos / EllascrucenTo cross

Imperfect subjunctive conjugations

YoCruzara / cruzaseI crossed
Cruzaras / cruzasesYou crossed
Él / Ella / UstedCruzara / cruzaseHe/She crossed
NosotrosCruzáramos / cruzásemosWe crossed
VosotrosCruzarais / cruzaseisYou crossed
Ustedes / Ellos / EllasCruzaran / cruzaseisThey/You crossed

Perfect subjunctive

graphic showing how to conjugate jugar in perfect subjunctive in spanish

Si me hubiera cruzado, habría alcanzado el camión. 
If I had crossed, I would have caught the bus. 


Imperative conjugation

To give commands in Spanish with the verb cruzar, you’ll use ‘cruc’ for ustedes and nosotros while and vosotros use ‘cruz’. The endings you need to add are shown below.

NosotroscrucemosLet’s cross

[‘Cruzar’ conjugated in imperative] + (complement)

Cruza la calle ahora, está en verde.
Cross the street now, the traffic light is green.

¡Crúzate! Los carros están muy lejos. 
Cross! The cars are too far away. 

No + [‘cruzar’ conjugated in imperative] + [noun]

No cruces ese puente, se ve frágil.
Don’t cross that bridge, it looks fragile.

How to Use ‘Cruzar’ in Spanish with Examples

There are two ways in which we can use ‘cruzar’ in Spanish:

  1. To say ‘to cross’ or ‘go through’. 
  2. Expressing that you run into someone

Keep on reading the following sections where you’ll learn the different situations in which you can use cruzar in Spanish. To help you practice, I’ve included phrase structures and examples that you can use as guidance. 

To say ‘to cross’ or ‘to go through’

In Spanish, ‘cruzar’ is used to say that a person crosses to the other side of some other place, such as a street or a bridge. In some cases, it also means to intertwine, especially when two objects (such as your arms, legs, or even a path) are intersecting. 

[‘Cruzar’ conjugated] + [definite article] + [noun]

Cruzaría la calle si el semáforo estuviera en verde.
I would cross the street if the traffic light was green.

Cruzaremos el puente para llegar al lado norte de la ciudad.
We will cross the bridge to reach the north side of the city.

Carlos cruzó los brazos porque tenía frío.
Carlos crossed his arms because he was cold.

If you’re talking about two paths or streets that are intersecting, cruzar follows this phrase structure:

[‘Cruzar’ conjugated] + con + [noun]

Avenida Patria cruza con Avenida Guadalupe.
Ave. Patria crosses with Ave. Guadalupe.

¿Sabes si esta calle cruza con Main Street?
Do you know if this street crosses with Main Street?

Antes, mi calle cruzaba con Rafael Sanzio. 
Before, my street crossed with Rafael Sanzio.

Take Note: Another use of this verb in Spanish is when talking about pairing or breeding some animals. In this context, ‘cruzar’ can be translated as ‘to cross’ or ‘to crossbreed’. 

[‘Cruzar’ conjugated] + a + [noun] + con + [noun]

Crucé a mi bóxer con una pitbull.
I crossbred my boxer with a pit bull.

Expressing that you run into someone

Just like in English, this verb is also used to express that two people happen to meet. In this context, it’ means ‘to meet’, ‘to run into’, or ‘to bump into’. With this meaning, you need to use the reflexive form cruzarse. 

[Reflexive pronoun] + [cruzar conjugated] + [preposition ‘con’] + [noun]

Me crucé con Enrique en el camino. 
I met Enrique on the way, but we were not able to talk.

Diario nos cruzamos con Elena cuando vamos a trabajar.
Everyday we cross paths with Elena on our way to work.

Sandra me dijo que se cruzó con Alberto ayer. 
Sandra told me that she ran into Alberto yesterday. 

Cruzar Expressions & Idioms

In Spanish, there are many expressions that use the verb ‘cruzar’ to express more than just getting across from one place to another. Here are other meanings that this verb may acquire depending on the context and how it is connected to other elements.

Cruzar la mirada: In Spanish, ‘cruzar’ is also used as ‘to exchange’ words or gestures (for example, ‘cruzar’ unas palabras). Therefore, the translation of this expression would be ‘to exchange glances’.

Cruzar unas palabras: In Spanish, this expression refers to exchanging words or gestures with another person. The translation is ‘to exchange a few words’.

Cruzar el charco: Translated as ‘to cross the ocean’ or ‘to cross the pond’, this expression is used when talking about traveling across the ocean, especially when referring to the Atlantic ocean.

Synonyms of ‘Cruzar’ in Spanish

Atravesar: When talking about going through or going across one place to another, we can use this verb instead of ‘cruzar’. It is translated as ‘to cross’, ‘to traverse’ or ‘to go through.

Pasar: If we are talking about crossing from one side to another, you could use ‘pasar’ which is translated as ‘to pass’ and it’s more suitable for casual conversations. 

Entrelazar: This verb means to join or tie one thing to another by crossing them with each other. With this meaning, we can use ‘entrelazar’ when talking about intertwining something, especially arms, legs or fingers. It is translated as ‘to intertwine’.

Encontrarse (con): If ‘cruzar’ is used to talk about meeting someone, crossing paths or bumping into someone, then we can use this verb. It is the translation of ‘to meet’ or ‘to run into’.

Daniela Sanchez

¡Hola! Soy Daniela Sanchez, I've been studying Spanish professionally as well as teaching it in Mexico and online for over 10 years. I’ve taught Spanish to a wide array of foreigners from many backgrounds. Over the years, I've made it my mission to work hard on refining many challenging to understand grammar topics to make my students' learning experiences easier, faster and more enjoyable. Read More About Me

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