Used To vs Use To

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What’s the difference between them?

Used To

Meaning:

Used to is an expression that is used to describe something that happened regularly in the past, but does not happen anymore.

Examples:

1. I used to play baseball every weekend.

2. We used to go on vacation every summer.

3. I used to spend my days at the beach.

Use To

Meaning:

describes something that happened regularly in the past, but does not happen anymore; always goes with 'did.'

Examples:

1. Did you use to play football?

2. I didn't use to work as a plumber.

3. Did you use to work with him?

Learn similar and opposite words to spot the difference

Synonyms

Antonyms

Used To

1. Accustomed to

2. Inhabit of

3. Well-versed in

4. Regularly employed

5. Prone to

1. Unaccustomed

2. Avoided

3. Unfamiliar

4. Unskilled

5. Not accustomed to

Use To

1. Used to

2. Was accustomed to

3. Had a habit of

4. Once regularly

5. Was familiar with

1. Cease

2. Avoid

3. Deny

4. Oppose

5. Refuse

Tricks for mastery

Useful tips to understand the difference between confusing words "Used To", "Use To".

1. If there's 'did' in the sentence (typically in questions or negatives), then you drop the 'd' and use 'use to'. For example, 'Did you use to play football?'

2. Without 'did', you should use 'used to'. E.g., 'I used to play football.'

3. When speaking quickly, 'did you use to' can sound smoother and more natural than 'did you used to', which can sound repetitive with the two 'd' sounds close together.

Check the full list of commonly confused words in English

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Frequently asked questions

In what situations should the first word be used?

'Used to' is used to describe past habits, actions, or states that were regular or common in the past but no longer occur. For example, 'I used to play the piano as a child.'

When is the appropriate context for using the second word?

'Use to' is not a standard phrase in English. The correct form is 'used to' (with 'd' at the end). When using 'used to,' it should be followed by the base form of the verb and is often paired with 'did' in questions and negatives. For instance, 'Did you used to visit that place?'

Do the two words share the same pronunciation?

No, 'used to' is typically pronounced as /juːst tuː/, while 'use to' is pronounced /juːs tuː/.

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

One common mistake is omitting the 'd' in 'used to' (e.g., saying 'use to') or failing to use the auxiliary verb 'did' when forming questions and negatives (e.g., 'Did you use to like ice cream?'). Another error is using 'used to' to describe ongoing habits in the present, which is incorrect; it only pertains to past habits that have ceased.

Fill in the gaps to check yourself

1. I ________ play the guitar every day, but I havent touched it in years.

2. Did you ________ go jogging in the mornings?

3.She didnt ________ like chocolate, but now she loves it.

4. There ________ be a cinema here, but now its a shopping mall.

5. We ________ visit our grandparents every summer.

6. They didnt ________ have a dog, but they got one last month.

1. I used to play the guitar every day, but I havent touched it in years.

Explanation: The sentence describes a regular past activity that doesnt happen anymore. We use used to without did.

2. Did you use to go jogging in the mornings?

Explanation: When forming questions or negatives about past habits, we use did with use to. The question is about a past regular habit, so use to is correct here.

3. She didnt use to like chocolate, but now she loves it.

Explanation: As with the previous explanation, in negative sentences about past habits, we use didnt with use to.

4. There used to be a cinema here, but now its a shopping mall.

Explanation: This sentence describes a past situation that has changed. Used to is appropriate here without the use of did.

5. We used to visit our grandparents every summer.

Explanation: This is a positive statement about a past regular activity. Used to is the correct choice.

6. They didnt use to have a dog, but they got one last month.

Explanation: Again, for negative statements about past habits, we use didnt with use to.

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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.