Ich will or Ich möchte??



Hallo Nathalie, I have a question concerning lesson 3.1. In the one part of the lesson where you talk about renting a car you ask how one would say "I would like to rent a fast car". Paul answers with "Ich will". I thought "Ich will" meant "I want" and that "Ich möchte" meant "I would like". Did I miss something in an earlier lesson concerning this word usage? Thanks for any help you can give me. Tom

Hi Tom,

You are right that "I would like" is translated with "Ich möchte" and "I want" is "Ich will".

In Germany it is quite common to say "Ich will" when in fact in English you would say "I would like". Germans sometimes come accross as quite direct and often this comes down to the fact that "Ich will" is translated with "I want".

It is accepted to say "Ich will" in German in a lot of cases where in English you would definitely use "I would like". I guess we are trying to translate both languages as authentic as possible, therefore there are some cases where "I will" is "I would like" in English, like in Lesson 3.1.

Looking back now I agree that it can be confusing and we should have done it more consistently. However, lesson 3.1 is authentic in the sense that it is very likely that you would actually hear someone say "I will" meaning "I would like" in a case like this. If you are in doubt whether to use "Ich will" or "Ich möchte" remember that you are always on the safe side when using "Ich möchte".

I hope that helps.


Danke Nathalie, That clears it up for me. Much appreciated. Tom

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