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Live or stay ?



: WHEN I ask people where they live, how do I ask? Do I ask like this: “Where do you live?” or “Where do you stay at?”

And when I am answering this type of question, do I say, “I live in/at ...” or “I stay at/in ...”?

I am confused about the preposition after the words “stay” and “live”.






( English teacher )

  To “stay” in a place is to live in it temporarily. To ask someone where his permanent home is, you say: “Where do you live?” But if you meet someone who is on holiday, or is here temporarily, you ask: “Where are you staying?”. The present continuous tense there suggests a temporary situation.

There is no need to use a preposition in such a question. But you need a preposition for questions like “Which hotel are you staying at?” or “Which town are you staying in while you are in Malaysia?” or “Who are you staying with?”

The preposition to use after “I live ...” or “I am staying ...” in answer to the question “Where do you live?” or “Where are you staying?” depends on whether you are going to mention a country, city, town or street, in which case you use “in”; or a smaller location like a block of flats, a hotel or a friend’s house, in which case you use “at”, e.g.

“I live in Malaysia/Penang/High Street.”; “I am staying at the E & O Hotel/a friend’s house.” “I live at Angsana Flats.”




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