Language tip of the week: afford

Posted by on August 29, 2013

Learn English with Macmillan DictionaryIn this weekly post, we bring more useful content from the Macmillan Dictionary to English language learners. These tips are usually based on areas of English which learners find difficult, e.g. spelling, grammar, collocation, synonyms, etc.

This week’s language tip helps with the verb afford:

Afford is never followed by a verb in the -ing form. Use an infinitive:
✗ What about people who cannot afford going to these kind of centres?
✓ What about people who cannot afford to go to these kind of centres?
✗ The army can afford buying up to 10 tanks a year.
✓ The army can afford to buy up to 10 tanks a year.

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