en English

 Common mistake – would like

“Would like” is a polite way of saying “want” (either in a question or in a statement).

I’ve noticed that some Hong Kong Chinese people misunderstand the meaning of “would like”.

They think “would like” means “used to like” because they know that “would” can mean the past tense of ‘will’.

However, “would” means “used to” only when it is used with dynamic verbs: “would visit” or “would eat”.

It does not mean “used to” with state verbs such as “like”, “love”, etc.

If you don’t understand the meaning, then you will incorrectly answer questions such as this:

Talk about a country that you would like to visit

It means

Talk about a country that you want to visit

It does not mean

Talk about a country that you wanted to visit in the past but not anymore

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