Question tags

Question tags

Do you know how to use question tags like is he and didn't you? Test what you know with interactive exercises and read the explanation to help you.

Look at these examples to see how question tags are used.

You haven't seen this film, have you?
Your sister lives in Spain, doesn't she?
He can't drive, can he?

Try this exercise to test your grammar.

Grammar test 1

Question tags: Grammar test 1

Read the explanation to learn more.

Grammar explanation

We can add question tags like isn't it?, can you? or didn't they? to a statement to make it into a question. Question tags are more common in speaking than writing.

We often use question tags when we expect the listener to agree with our statement. In this case, when the statement is positive, we use a negative question tag.

She's a doctor, isn't she?
Yesterday was so much fun, wasn't it?

If the statement is negative, we use a positive question tag. 

He isn't here, is he?
The trains are never on time, are they?
Nobody has called for me, have they?

If we are sure or almost sure that the listener will confirm that our statement is correct, we say the question tag with a falling intonation. If we are a bit less sure, we say the question tag with a rising intonation.


If there is an auxiliary verb in the statement, we use it to form the question tag.

I don't need to finish this today, do I?
James is working on that, isn't he?
Your parents have retired, haven't they?
The phone didn't ring, did it?
It was raining that day, wasn't it?
Your mum hadn't met him before, had she?

Sometimes there is no auxiliary verb already in the statement. For example, when:

... the verb in the statement is present simple or past simple and is positive. Here we use don't, doesn't or didn't:

Jenni eats cheese, doesn't she?
I said that already, didn't I? 

... the verb in the statement is to be in the present simple or past simple. In this case we use to be to make the question tag:

The bus stop's over there, isn't it?
None of those customers were happy, were they?

... the verb in the statement is a modal verb. Here we use the modal verb to make the question tag:

They could hear me, couldn't they?
You won't tell anyone, will you?

If the main verb or auxiliary verb in the statement is am, the positive question tag is am I? but the negative question tag is usually aren't I?:

I'm never on time, am I?
I'm going to get an email with the details, aren't I?

Do this exercise to test your grammar again.

Grammar test 2

Question tags: Grammar test 2

Average: 4.2 (109 votes)

Submitted by rajupunchayil on Mon, 12/10/2020 - 17:45

Hi! What is the question tag for the following sentence: We won't have to work tomorrow. My answer is 'should we?' Is it correct? Also, 'We won't work tomorrow, will we?' Or is it 'shall we?'
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Submitted by Jonathan R on Tue, 13/10/2020 - 03:52

In reply to by rajupunchayil


Hi rajupunchayil,

The question tag is will we? for both sentences. When the sentence has a modal verb (won't, in these two sentences), use that modal verb in the question tag, but change it from negative to positive (or vice versa): won't --> will.

Does that make sense?


The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by emmanuelniyomugabo12 on Fri, 25/09/2020 - 23:40

That's good! Let's proceed.

Submitted by Furuku on Sun, 20/09/2020 - 19:40

Hi there! I have several question that I want to ask you. The first question: Is it possible to use "had" in the sentence that have there as a subject, For example There had something right there. Please help me, I don't know the rule of using there as a subject. If you have more advice, please leave it to me too! Thank you very much, Love from Thailand!
Profile picture for user Peter M.

Submitted by Peter M. on Mon, 21/09/2020 - 06:59

In reply to by Furuku


Hi Furuku,

No, you can't use have as a main verb with 'there'.

'There' is what we call a dummy subject. It can be followed by be, by modal verbs and by a few other verbs such as seem, appear etc.


In English, there and it can be dummy subjects. We have a page on the topic:


There is some debate about whether particular uses (such as the use of 'it' to talk about weather) are really dummy subjects. You can read more about that here:



The LearnEnglish Team

Submitted by abo omar on Sun, 06/09/2020 - 00:38

He gave up smoking,.....................? complete

Hello abo omar,

I'm afraid we don't provide answers for questions from elsewhere. We're happy to explain the rules of English and which something may be correct or incorrect, but we don't provide answers to questions from homework or tests.



The LearnEnglish Team

thank you for your help but can I say " He gave up smoking , did he ? " as a question tag because give up has a negative meaning

Hello abo omar,

Yes, that is possible.

You can use either didn't he or did he as the tags here, but there is a difference in meaning:

He gave up smoking, didn't he? > the speaker is sure this is true and is asking for confirmation

He gave up smoking, did he? > the speaker is surprised and is checking that the information is correct; this is often used as a response to surprising information



The LearnEnglish Team