– I need to go to the store.

– I have to go to the store.

– I must go to the store.

Do these sentences mean the same thing? Can we always use them in the same way?

Let’s find out in today’s Confident English lesson.

Need to vs. have to vs. must can be used as synonyms. Sometimes. That’s the good news.

Generally, they all mean that you’re talking about a responsibility, an obligation, or something that is important to do. This is where they are similar. In positive sentences.

But there are some small differences in connotation and how we use them. (Connotation is the feeling or idea a word gives in addition to its meaning.)

And then, in negative sentences (for example, don’t have to and mustn’t), the meanings are not at all similar. This means you must be careful about which verb you use.

Let’s take a closer look at how English speakers use these verbs in everyday conversation. I want you to learn how to use them in the same way.

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