When they both mean "punctual, on time". Could you please give some examples? Thank you so much!

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    I'm afraid you should simply try an online dictionary as DWDS for this type of question. Short hint pünktlich requires an agreed time, while rechtzeitig could refer to something like before it started to rain.
    – guidot
    Nov 7, 2018 at 20:32
  • Well, DWDS is only in german. So why not post a full answer in english here?
    – Jonathan Herrera
    Nov 7, 2018 at 21:25
  • @jonathan.scholbach: Why invest work to fully answer an off-topic question? Do you question the benefit of mono-lingual dictionaries for the learner of a language? But I guess, most otther online dictionaries would also have helped.
    – guidot
    Nov 8, 2018 at 8:10
  • I don't question the benefit of mono-lingual dictionaries. Anyway, if someone is not fluent in german, a german dictionary might not be sufficient to make them understand the subtle difference between pünktlich and rechtzeitig. If you find a dictionary in english answering the question, why don't you link it here? Asking "Why invest work to fully answer an off-topic question?" sounds very convincing, really. But in fact it's a circular argument, because the dissent is about whether the question is off-topic in the first place. I would just propose to be nice to people seeking help here.
    – Jonathan Herrera
    Nov 8, 2018 at 9:00

1 Answer 1


Rechtzeitig is rather in time (i.e. early enough), while pünktlich is punctual, on time (i.e. at the specified time).

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