Expressing PREFERENCES: English Lesson

Expressing PREFERENCES: English Lesson

In this English lesson Expressing Preferences in English, learners are going to learn how to use the verb “PREFER” to express preference.

There are three (3) grammar structures explained with their meanings and use; give several examples with pictures.

We make these structures to make these comparisons between things we like and don’t like.

Prefer noun phrase to noun phrases; this means to like something more than something.

Watch the Video here.

Let’s have a look at the examples:

Expressing Preferences In English Examples

I prefer ginger to green tea.

I prefer pasta to noodles.

I prefer dancing to singing.

(“dancing” and “singing” are gerunds. They are verbs acting as nouns.)

Another example in the third person singular.

“Tim prefers watching videos to playing computer games.”

Another structure is:

1. Would + infinitive – we use this to describe present and future preferences.


I would prefer to go to Bangkok.

We have also a contracted form for this structure.

Contracted form:

I’d prefer to go to Bangkok.

I’d prefer to come early.

Negative form:

I’d prefer not to come early.

Question form:

Would you prefer to come early?

2. would prefer + infinitive + rather than + the base form of the verb

This mean, to want to do one thing more than the another thing


I would prefer to go to Bangkok rather than go in Phuket.

I’d prefer to stay home rather than get wet in the rain.

3. would prefer + object pronoun + infinitive

          – to describe our preferences for the actions of another person

                   (in the present or future)


I would prefer him to stay home.

Negative form: I would prefer him not to stay home.

Question form: Would you prefer him to stay home?

Three (3) common mistakes

1. I would prefer sleep. X

    I would prefer to sleep. (correct)

2. I prefer yoghurt than milk. X

    I prefer yoghurt to milk. (correct)

3. I’d prefer to stay home than get wet in the rain. X

    I’d prefer to stay home rather than get wet in the rain. (correct)

Downloadable Material

Here’s the downloadable material of Tutorial on  expressing Preferences in English  here.

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