American and British English: Differences in Usage
We usually write abbreviations without full stops in modern British English. Full stops (US ‘periods’) are normal in American English.
Mr (US Mr.) = Mister
Dr (US Dr.) = Doctor
Ltd (US Ltd.) = Limited (company)
Kg (US kg.) = kilogram
All and all of
Before a noun with a determiner (e.g. the, this, my), all and all of are both possible in British English. American English usually has all of.
- She has eaten all (of) the cake. (GB)
- She has eaten all of the cake. (US)
- All (of) my friends like riding. (GB)
- All of my friends like riding. (US)
Expressions with prepositions and particles
Different from/than (US)
Different from/to (GB)
Check something (out) (US)
Check something (GB)
Do something over/again (US)
Do something again (GB)
Live on X street (US)
Live in X street (GB)
On a team (US)
In a team (GB)
Monday through/to Friday (US)
Monday to Friday (GB)
Informal use of like
In an informal style, like is often used instead of as if/though, especially in American English. This is not considered correct in a formal style.
- It seems like it is going to rain.
- He sat there smiling like it was his birthday.
In American English, it is common to leave out on before the days of the week.
- I am seeing her Sunday morning. (US)
British people say at the weekend; Americans say on the weekend.
- What did you do at the weekend? (GB)
- What did you do on the weekend? (US)
In and for
- I haven’t seen her in years. (US)
Sections in this articleAmerican and British English: differences in grammar - I
American and British English: differences in grammar - II
American and British English: differences in vocabulary - I
American and British English: differences in vocabulary - II
American and British English: differences in usage - I
American and British English: differences in usage - II
American and British English: differences in spelling