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  • Wish or Hope? Video and Exercise

    Wish and hope are two similar words that are commonly confused in English. Ask a native English speaker (who doesn’t teacher English) and they’ll probably have to think a long time to define the difference between these two words.

    For example:

    I (wish/hope) I was a man.

    I (wish/hope) I had some wine.

    I (wish/hope) he wins the election.

    Watch the video to see if you were correct, then try the exercises below.


    Choose the correct answer. Write your answers in comments and we will correct them.

    1. I (wish/hope) you wouldn’t order hamburgers at nice restaurants.

    2. I (wish/hope) you would take me to restaurants with better hamburgers.

    3.  I (wish/hope) you have a nice vacation.

    4.  He (wishes/hopes) he will get a better job.

    5. He (wishes/hopes) he had more money.

    6. I (wish/hope) you got the apartment you wanted.

    8. I had (wish/hope) he would have called me sooner.

    9. We (wish/hope) you a merry Christmas.

    10. Let’s (wish/hope) that everything is better next year.

    • Gloria

      1. I wish you wouldn’t order hamburgers at nice restaurants.
      2. I wish you would take me to restaurants with better hamburgers.
      3. I hope you have a nice vacation.
      4. He hopes he will get a better job.
      5. He wishes he had more money.
      6. I wish you got the apartment you wanted.
      8. I had wish he would have called me sooner.
      9. We wish you a merry Christmas.
      10. Let’s hope that everything is better next year.

      • LOIEnglish

        Gloria…You had two problems.
        Number 6 and 8.
        Number 6 is something we want for the future but we don’t know the results yet. Because it is a desire for the future we need to use hope. We use the past tense of ‘wanted’ because we don’t know the result or if our desire happened. So the correct sentence is, ‘I hope you got the apartment you wanted.’
        Number 8
        We never use ‘wish’ with an auxiliary before. So we can’t say I had wish…instead we use hope. I had hoped he would have called me sooner.
        We could also say this: I wish he would have called me sooner. But notice wish is alone without an auxiliary.
        I hope this helps.

    • RoBO

      The last example on the video “I was hoping you could work for me” might also be referring to the future – to the speaker’s desire that the other person might be able to work for them in the future. The use of the past continuous “I was hoping” is just to make the request a little more indirect, but it still refers to the future. Another common structure of this type is “I was wondering if you could work for me tomorrow”. Using “wondering ” makes the question more open, whereas with “hoping” the implications is that “but maybe you can’t”, ie it’s more indirect and polite and makes it easy for the other person to say no… (just a thought)

    • YC Lai

      1 Hope
      2 Hope
      3 Wish
      4 Hopes
      5 Wishes
      6 Wish
      8 Wish
      9 Wish
      10 Hope

    • Erdina Nur k

      1wish
      2hope
      3wish
      4hopes
      5hopes
      6wish
      8hope
      9wish
      10hope