Plain vs Plane

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What’s the difference between them?



Simple, not elaborate; free from excess ornamentation; having a surface without slope, embankment, or elevation.


1. The plain white walls looked dull and uninspiring.

2. The plain truth is that I don't know the answer.

3. She had a plain face but a kind heart.



A plane is a flat surface with no curves or bumps. It is also a type of aircraft, typically with wings and one or more engines.


1. The plane flew through the sky with its loud engine humming.

2. The plane landed safely on the runway after a long flight.

3. We boarded the plane and settled into our seats for the long journey.

Learn similar and opposite words to spot the difference




1. Unadorned

2. Unembellished

3. Unvarnished

4. Simple

5. Straightforward

1. Ornate

2. Lavish

3. Decorative

4. Flamboyant

5. Gaudy


1. Aircraft

2. Aeroplane

3. Flying machine

4. Airplane

5. Winged vehicle

1. Train

2. Automobile

3. Sailboat

4. Walk

5. Descend

Tricks for mastery

Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "Plain", "Plane".

1. If you’re talking about a flat surface, use 'plain'.

2. If you’re talking about an aircraft, use 'plane'.

3. Think of the word 'plain' when you picture a grassy plain.

4. Think of the word 'plane' when you picture a flying plane.

Practice English with the Promova app and avoid misusing confusing words

Frequently asked questions

In what situations should the first word be used?

Plain is typically used to describe something that is not excessively elaborate or decorated. For example, one might describe a room as 'plain white walls' or a cake as 'plain vanilla'.

When is the appropriate context for using the second word?

Plane is usually used to refer to an aircraft or tool that is flat and level, such as a woodworking plane. It is also used for a flat surface, such as a plane of a graph.

Do the two words share the same pronunciation?

Yes, these words have similar pronunciation, so you have pay attention to the context to use the correct word.

What are some common mistakes people make when using these words?

Some common mistakes people make when using these words are confusing the spelling of the two words, and using the wrong word in the wrong context. For example, one might mistakenly refer to a graph as 'plain' instead of 'plane', or refer to a cake as 'plane' instead of 'plain'.

Fill in the gaps to check yourself

1. She had a very __ outlook on life.

2. The __ cut through the clear sky.

3. I dont like my food too __.

4. He was quite __ spoken.

5. The river was __ and calm.

6. He flew in a __ to his holiday destination.

1. She had a very plain outlook on life.

Explanation: Plain means simple, basic, and unadorned, which describes an outlook on life that is without complexity or embellishment.

2. The plane cut through the clear sky.

Explanation: Plane is a type of aircraft used for transportation, which is the correct word that fits in this sentence.

3. I dont like my food too plain.

Explanation: Plain means having little or no flavor, which is why it is used here in the context of food that is not flavorful.

4. He was quite plain-spoken.

Explanation: Plain-spoken means frank and direct in the way one speaks, which is the correct way to fill the gap in this sentence.

5. The river was plain and calm.

Explanation: Plain means lacking in variety or interest, which describes a river that is smooth and tranquil.

6. He flew in a plane to his holiday destination.

Explanation: Plane is a type of aircraft used for transportation, which is the correct word to fill this gap in the sentence.

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List of Commonly Confused Words

Finding your way around the English language can be hard, especially since there are so many confusing words and rules. So, a list of the most confusing words in English is an extremely useful tool for improving language accuracy and sharing the ideas clearly.