Unit 10.2

Would Like


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Introduction

Would like is used to express requests or offers more politely.

Form

Would is a modal auxiliary verb and when used with like (would like) it forms a request or offer in a polite way. In this structure the form is always the same, even for the third person singular.

We usually find this structure in its three forms: affirmative, negative and interrogative.

Affirmative

Its structure, in the affirmative form, is:
Subject + would like + [to + verb]/noun + …

Subject would like To + Verb/ Noun
I would like to work /pizza
You would like to work /pizza
He would like to work /pizza
She would like to work /pizza
It would like to work /pizza
We would like to work /pizza
You would like to work /pizza
They would like to work /pizza

Negative

Its structure, in the negative form, is:
Subject + would + not + like + [to + verb]/noun + …

  • Short form of the negative form is wouldn’t.
Subject would + not Like To + Verb/ Noun
I would not like to work /pizza
You would not like to work /pizza
He would not like to work /pizza
She would not like to work /pizza
It would not like to work /pizza
We would not like to work /pizza
You would not like to work /pizza
They would not like to work /pizza

Interrogative

Its structure, in the interrogative form, is:
Would + subject + like + [to + verb]/noun + …?

Would Subject Like To + Verb/ Noun Question
Mark
Would I like to work /pizza ?
Would you like to work /pizza ?
Would he like to work /pizza ?
Would she like to work /pizza ?
Would it like to work /pizza ?
Would we like to work /pizza ?
Would you like to work /pizza ?
Would they like to work /pizza ?

Example

Affirmative:

  • I would like to exchange some euros for pounds.
  • She would like some tea.
  • They would like 2 tickets for bus 89.

Negative:

  • I wouldn’t like to be in your shoes. 
  • You wouldn’t like it here.
  • They wouldn’t like the car I bought.

Interrogative:

  • Would you like to learn Spanish?
  • Would he like a piece of cake?
  • Would they like a drink?

Use

We use would like to say want in a more polite way, especially when we are making an offer or a request.

Summary

We use would like to express our requests or offers in a more polite way, which is not as strong as want.

We can use it in its different forms:

  • affirmative: we start with the subject followed by would like and a verb in the infinitive form or a noun.
  • negative: we start with the subject followed by would not like and a verb in the infinitive form or a noun.
  • interrogative: we start with would followed by the subject followed by like and a verb in the infinitive form or a noun (the sentence ends with a question mark).

For example:
— Affirmative: “I would like a cup of tea.”
— Negative: “I wouldn’t like a cup of tea.”
— Interrogative: “Would you like a cup of tea?

NOTE: Like has a different meaning than would like: like is used to express the idea of enjoying something.

For example:
— “would like to do some sport.” = We use would like to express the subject’s desire to do some sport.
♦ “I like sport.” = We use like to express that the subject enjoys doing sports.

Let’s revise this content within the {Form} section. Take a look at the {Example} section that shows its use within a context.

Exercises

External link to Would Like exercises (55).



More exercises

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