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Maggio 2018
The Speak Up blog answers any questions you may have either about the English language or our articles. Write to us at: http://blog.speakuponline.it. The most interesting questions will be published on this page. A word of warning, though: our blog is not a translation or homework service!

Travel, journey, trip, voyage... Could you explain the difference between them, please? Once and for all.
a b

Dear mysterious reader,
The easy part of the answer would be that ‘to travel’ is a verb. For instance, “I travel to work by train.” But it can be used as a noun to describe the activity as in “I love travel.” ‘Journey’ and ‘trip’, on the other hand, are almost synonymous, although a ‘journey’ is usually longer. Then, we talk about a ‘school trip’ or a ‘business trip’, never ‘journey’. But when someone arrives at the airport or station, you can say “How was your trip?” or “How was your journey?” A ‘voyage’ is almost exclusively used for a long journey by sea. So not very common these days...

Caro Speak Up,
In ‘would’ condizionale, la frase affermativa è sempre seguita da ‘if’ oppure ci sono altri casi in cui ‘would’ non è seguito da niente?

Dear Roberto,
In a conditional sentence, you must state what the condition is. For instance, “I would buy it, if I could afford it.” So, yes, the half of the sentence that describes the condition must start with 'if' or perhaps 'unless'. But it's not always necessary to actually say the 'if' part of the sentence. It can be understood from context. For example, “I wouldn't do that (if I were in that situation)”, or “I'd definitely tell him (if I were you).” The rest of the sentence is so obvious, you can leave it out. I hope this answers your question.

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