Certain words in English sound exactly the same as each other and can be confusing. In fact, many native English speakers confuse these words as they sound exactly the same. We are going to explain the difference between TO OR TOO so that you do not make the same grammatical mistakes.
TO can be used as a preposition, part of the full infinitive or an adverb.
To as a preposition means in the direction of: I am going to the bank. He is walking to work.
To can form part of a word pattern, for example, listen to or object to. I am listening to music at the moment. I object to being spoken to like that.
To can also form part of a phrasal verb and again it is a preposition: Are you looking forward to going on holiday?
To as part of the infinitive goes before the verb, this is not a preposition: I managed to pass the exam. I want to take up a new sport next year.
To as an adverb literally means closed: Can you pull the door to, please?
TOO is normally used as an adverb or an intensifier.
Too as an adverb means also or as well. It normally goes at the end of a sentence, like this: I went to that concert too. Nice to meet you too.
Too as an intensifier goes before an adjective and it has a negative meaning.
It means something is not as it should be: My sister is too lazy for this type of job. I am not going to the party as I am too tired. I work too many hours and that is why I feel stressed.
TOO + ADJECTIVE
I was too busy to finish all my work yesterday.
TOO + MUCH + UNCOUNTABLE NOUN
I have eaten too much cheese during the Christmas holidays.
TOO + MANY + COUNTABLE NOUN
I have too many meetings arranged for this week so I won’t be able to attend all of them.
To use grammatically correct English, it is essential to know the difference between these similar words, for more information see one of our courses.
- What do you usually have for dinner if you are too tired to cook?
- How often do you go to the cinema?
- If you could go anywhere in the world, where would you travel to?
- Did you manage to pass all of you exams last year?
- Are you looking forward to going on holiday next summer?
TIP: Do not confuse TO or TOO with the word TWO. Two is the number 2