The present tense is the base form of the verb: I work in London.
But the third person (she/he/it) adds an -s: She works in London.


We use the present tense to talk about:

  • something that is true in the present:

I’m nineteen years old.
He lives in London.
I’m a student.

  • something that happens again and again in the present:

I play football every weekend.

We use words like sometimes, often. always, and never (adverbs of frequency) with the present tense:

I sometimes go to the cinema.
She never plays football.

  • something that is always true:

The adult human body contains 206 bones.
Light travels at almost 300,000 kilometres per second.


  • something that is fixed in the future.

The school term starts next week.
The train leaves at 1945 this evening.
We fly to Paris next week.


Questions and negatives

Look at these questions:

Do you play the piano?
Where do you live?
Does Jack play football?
Where does he come from?
Do Rita and Angela live in Manchester?
Where do they work?

  • With the present tense, we use do and does to make questions. We use does for the third person (she/he/it) and we use do for the others.


 We use do and does with question words like where, what and why:


 But look at these questions with who:

Who lives in London?
Who plays football at the weekend?
Who works at Liverpool City Hospital?

Look at these sentences:

I like tennis, but I don’t like football. (don’t = do not)
I don’t live in London now.
I don’t play the piano, but I play the guitar.
They don’t work at the weekend.
John doesn’t live in Manchester. (doesn’t = does not)
Angela doesn’t drive to work. She goes by bus.

  • With the present tense we use do and does to make negatives. We use does not (doesn’t) for the third person (she/he/it) and we use do not (don’t) for the others.

Complete these sentences with don’t or doesn’t:





Can you please help me to understand, when can we use 'is' and 'does' in question form?


Can we use the Present Simple Tense in the sentense below :
~Gary has travelled a lot. He can speak five languages.~
~Gary travells a lot.He can speak five languages.~
I guess in the first one Gary was travelling before ,also he is travelling around now and perhaps his travellng is still not over yet.In the second one Gary just travells,he likes doing it ,it's just a fact about him.

Hello chedD1t,

Both of those sentences are correct (though 'travels' in the second sentence has only one L).

The present perfect describes his experience in his life up to now. It does not tell us whether or not he will continue travelling in the future, but merely his experience to date and the result of that experience.

The present simple tells us that travelling is Gary's typical behaviour and therefore we understand that this is true of his past, present and future - it is a part of his life, not just a description of his experience so far.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Hi Peter / Kirk,

Please help me in understanding the below rule of present tense.

For the third person present tense base for : "But the third person (she/he/it) adds an -s: She works in London."
To the contrary when we are questioning we are not adding an -S to the base form -- " Where does he come from? " or "Do Rita and Angela live in Manchester?"


Hi Debjyoti,

I'm not sure what part of the rule you do not understand. Affirmative sentences add -s in the third person:

He works in London.

Questions and negatives do not add -s (but use does in the third person)

Does he work* in London? (not 'works')

He doesn't work* in London. (not 'works')


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

We can use do or does only if there is "where, why and what"? What about when orr which or others?

Hello VicKtoRas,

The words given on the page are examples, not a full list. If you look at the sentence you will see that it says '', showing that these are examples. Other question words can of course also be used.


Best wishes,


The LearnEnglish Team

Which situation that we can you To Do or To Be?

Where does he live? ( using To Do for question)
Where is he living ? ( Using To Be verb for question)