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Talking about likes and dislikes in English

There’s a whole range of English expressions you can use to talk about how much you like or dislike something.

If you love something

“I love eating ice-cream.”

“I adore sun-bathing.”

“She’s mad about that new boy band.”

“He’s crazy about that girl.”

If you like something a lot

“She’s fond of chocolate.”

“I like swimming very much.”

“He really likes that new golf course.” (Remember to stress “really” in this sentence.)

If you like something

“He quite likes going to the cinema.”

“I like cooking.”

If you neither like nor dislike something

“I don’t mind doing the housework.”

In reply to a question if you like something or not, you can say:
I don’t really care either way.”
It’s all the same to me.”

If you don’t like something

“She doesn’t like cooking very much.”

“He’s not very fond of doing the gardening.”

“He’s not a great fan of football.”

“Horse-riding isn’t really his thing.”

“I dislike wasting time.”

If you really dislike something

“I don’t like sport at all.”

“He can’t stand his boss.”

“She can’t bear cooking in a dirty kitchen.”

“I hate crowded supermarkets.”

“He detests being late.”

“She loathes celery.”

Things to remember

Dislike is quite formal.

Fond of is normally used to talk about food or people.

The ‘oa’ in loathe rhymes with the ‘oa’ in boat.

Grammar Note

To talk about your general likes or dislikes, follow this pattern: like something or like doing something.

Remember that “I’d like…” is for specific present or future wishes.
“I like swimming” = I like swimming generally.
“I’d like to go swimming this afternoon” = I want to go swimming at a specific time in the future.

Common mistake

Be careful where you put very much or a lot. These words should go after the thing that you like.

For example, “I like reading very much.” NOT “I like very much reading.”

Where next?

Check out our page on how to speak about your hobbies in English.

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