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  1. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #1

    in time/on time again

    I know the main difference between in time and on time. I only want to add to my knowledge what native speakers would feel about the following situation:

    The French class starts at 9 on Monday. Ben is always on time for the class. Joe is always in time for the class.

    The question is: Who comes earlier?
    To me it seems that Joe (who is always in time) comes a little earlier (say, 5-10 minutes to 9) than Ben and Ben (who is always on time) comes at 9 sharp (or 1 minute to 9). Is it so?

    Who is better organised - Ben or Joe? What can you say about their character? Are they both punctual? (Such comment really could help me understand the difference even better.)
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

  2. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #2

    Re: in time/on time again

    In that situation, it's impossible to tell who comes earlier. Being "on time" and "in time" for a 9am class is the same thing. It simply means you're not late.

    Ben arrives exactly on time for the class. (He arrives at 9am.)
    Joe is always in time for the class. (He arrives at some time before 9.01am.)
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  3. tzfujimino's Avatar
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    #3

    Re: in time/on time again

    Quote Originally Posted by emsr2d2 View Post
    Being "on time" and "in time" for a 9am class is the same thing. It simply means you're not late.

    Ben arrives exactly on time for the class. (He arrives at 9am.)
    Do you mean we need an adverb such as 'exactly' or 'right' to mean "He arrives at 9am sharp/at exactly 9am"?
    (Just saying "He arrives on time [...]" doesn't convey that meaning?)
    Thank you.

  4. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #4

    Re: in time/on time again

    If someone said to me "Jane is very dependable. She always turns up for work on time", I would not assume that she walked in the door at exactly 9am (if 9am was her official start time). I would simply assume that she is never late.
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  5. englishhobby's Avatar
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    #5

    Re: in time/on time again

    And John is very (????) He always turns up for work in time.
    Lucky?
    Or in this situation "in time" shouldn't be used?
    If I were a native speaker of English, I would never shut up. :-)

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    #6

    Re: in time/on time again

    John is very punctual. He always turns up for work on time.

  6. Roman55's Avatar
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    #7

    Re: in time/on time again

    I am not a teacher.

    John is very obsessive-compulsive. He always turns up for work in time to grab a coffee before his shift starts.

  7. emsr2d2's Avatar
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    #8

    Re: in time/on time again

    I might have missed a joke but that's not a sign of OCD. That's just what keeps most people sane!
    Remember - if you don't use correct capitalisation, punctuation and spacing, anything you write will be incorrect.

  8. Roman55's Avatar
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    #9

    Re: in time/on time again

    I am not a teacher.

    There may have been a feeble attempt at humour, but the underlying point was that 'in time' often means 'in time for something'.

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