Word pairs: been | gone


Been and gone can be used to describe trips and visits.

Been is used to describe completed visits/trips:

  • I have been to Japan twice before and I hope to go back soon.
  • I have just been to the bakery. We have enough fresh bread for everyone.
  • Where have you been? We were worried something was wrong.

Gone is used to describe incomplete visits/trips:

  • He has already gone to pick up the car from the garage.
  • John has gone to the supermarket to get some bread. He'll be back in half an hour.
  • Has she gone already?
  • They have gone to Switzerland for the weekend.

Note: In British English we can also use been and gone to say something came along and then left.

What time is the president arriving? He has already been and gone. He had to run for a golf match.

Further learning
Description Author Language
A detailed look at using 'been' and 'gone'. mmmEnglish
Quick overview of when to use 'been' and 'gone'. BBC Learning