You are here

Verbs followed by '-ing' or by 'to' + infinitive 2

Do you know the difference between stop doing something and stop to do something?

Look at these examples to see how these verb patterns work.

The bus stopped picking up the children.
The bus stopped to pick up the children. 

I want to try studying with a friend to see if it helps us stay more motivated.
I'm trying to study but it's impossible with all this noise.

Try this exercise to test your grammar.

Grammar test 1

Verbs followed by '-ing' or by 'to' + infinitive 2: Grammar test 1

Read the explanation to learn more.

Grammar explanation

Some verbs have a different meaning depending on whether they are followed by an -ing form or to + infinitive. 


Stop + -ing means the action is not happening any more.

I've stopped buying the newspaper because now I read the news online.

Stopto + infinitive means that someone or something stops an activity so that they can do something else.

He stopped the video to ask the students some questions.


Try + -ing means that you are trying something as an experiment, especially as a possible solution to a problem, to see if it works or not.

Have you tried turning the computer off and on again?

Tryto + infinitive means that something is difficult but you are making an effort to do it. 

I'm trying to learn Japanese but it's very difficult.


Remember + -ing and forget + -ing refer to having (or not having) a memory of something in the past.

I remember watching this film before.
I'll never forget meeting you for the first time in this café.

Rememberto + infinitive and forgetto + infinitive refer to recalling (or not recalling) that there is something we need to do before we do it.

Please remember to buy some milk on the way home.
He forgot to lock the door when he went out.

Do this exercise to test your grammar again.

Grammar test 2

Verbs followed by '-ing' or by 'to' + infinitive 2: Grammar test 2

Language level

Intermediate: B1


Hello everyone! I have a little doubt about the use of forget + ing and forget + to + infinitive. In an exam I had to complete the following phrase:

"Oh no! I forgot ___ tickets for the concert!" (buy)

I filled the gap with "to buy" but my teacher claims that I am wrong and the actual answer is "buying" because the action happened in the past. I thought that made no sense so I checked some online english pages and they all seem to agree with me, so I'm really confused. What is the correct answer?

Hi MascaChapas27,

I agree with your answer. It's true that forgot refers to the past. But the meaning that makes most sense in this sentence is that I needed to buy tickets, but I forgot to do that (i.e. I didn't actually buy the tickets) and then I suddenly realised (Oh no!).

If we say I forgot buying ... , that means I did buy the tickets, but I forgot that I bought them. It's grammatically possible, but the situation seems less likely.


The LearnEnglish Team

hi.i search the passive forms of gerund and this gramer this?

Hello mr.yashar,

If we take the verb 'do' as an example, the passive form of the gerund is 'being done' and the passive form of the infinitive is 'to be done'.

All the best,


The LearnEnglish Team

Hi team,
I am confused about this sentence which is in my book''Bazaars selling food of their cities.''
How we can use just -selling- without'to be'. I haven't known yet?

Hello Yigido,

Is it perhaps the title of an article? Often words are left out in titles of newspaper articles, for example, where space is limited. We'd need to know a little more about the context to say much more.

All the best,


The LearnEnglish Team

Ok teacher, after that I am going to be careful about context.

Thankyou for the lesson

Thanks for the lesson.

Hello sir,

Where can I find expert level (C1- C2) lessons here on BritishCouncil website?