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  5. "He wants to travel to the So…

"He wants to travel to the South Pole."

Translation:Er möchte zum Südpol reisen.

April 7, 2018



I was under the impression that "will" (wollen) is "want" and that "möchte" is "would like to". I don't think that any of the three options is accurate enough


I think it should have "er will zum sudpole reisen". Or have I missed something?


"Wollen" expresses a (perhaps very) strong will to achieve something. Using it can make an aggressive impression and so it is rarely used in formal letters, but rather at a protest march or a heated debate. "Wir wollen mehr Gerechtigkeit für Arbeitslose!" "Ich will, dass du sofort aufhörst zu rauchen."

"Möchten" is a polite way of expressing will and is often used in formal letters. It can also be a way of avoiding to express absolute certainty of your will. "Ich möchte Sie (freundlich) bitten, mir weiteres Informationsmaterial zu senden." "Er möchte die Qualität seines Unterrichts hoch halten."


"Er will zum Südpol reisen." is also accepted.


Why zum and not, for example,nach?


prepositions follow pretty arbitrary rules in most languages, you'll just have to remember which preposition goes with which verb / place.

In this case, it is zum because Südpol is always used with an article: Der Südpol. The correct preposition here is zu and therefore it is zu dem Südpol which becomes zum Südpol. nach is generally used for places that don't use an article, e.g. countries or cities.

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Isn't it also that "nach" implies entering some place/region, whereas the South pole is more like a point/coordinate?


then how about to "der Schweis"?


Do you mean "der Schweiß" = "the sweat"?
Or did you mean "die Schweiz" = "Switzerland"?
Ich fahre/gehe in die Schweiz. Yeah, Switzerland is totally female in German.


DUOs "correct" response is more like he would like (enjoy) going to the south pole than he wants to.... It should be changed


I second this. Change the English prompt so that it prompts the German that is wanted! You are not the only commmenter here who has issues with this (see Ben above). It's incorrect and, moreoever, confusing to learners, to prompt incorrectly.


A better translation would be "er will zum Sudpol reisen" --which was not offered


"Er will zum Südpol reisen" works, but "Er will zum Südpol fahren" doesn't, even though it suggests "fahrt" as an option for "travel".


Was ist falsch mit: "Er möchte nach dem Südpol reisen."


This sounds very antiquated, although even a little bit poetic. You might read it in old books from 2 centuries ago.
In modern German, it would mean that the South Pole travels first, and he wants to travel afterwards. ;o)


And the last exercise in Duo's German course on Jan-19-2021. Finished every single skill to level 5, 32108xp in a 143-day streak (4 month and 23 days, 225xp/day). Thank you Duo for this great German course. Thanks to those who made this journey much more easier and fun with their helpful comments especially: mizinamo, christian, AbunPangMOD, quis_lib_duo. I would like to make some suggestions to improve Duo: 1- I wish we were allowed to see other correct alternatives in the database in both languages. 2- Duo's method is learning a language through making mistakes. But at the end of each lessen it gives 5xp combo bonus bases on not making mistakes. 3- I wish the quality and variety of voices were improved. 4- And lastly I wish duo would finally make dark mode avalable too. I had to use other methods for that. Thank you again Duo, you're the best! Till next language!

[deactivated user]

    What is "dark mode"?


    Hmmm. I tried, "Er mochte gern zum Südpol reisen." and was marked wrong. But I do not understand why it is wrong. Can anyone help??? Thanks.

    [deactivated user]

      "Möchte gern" - one of those is redundant (pleonasm), because both mean the same thing. "Gern" is being used with other verbs, but not with this one. It's like saying "I would like gladly". Alternatively you could say: "Er würde gern zum Südpol reisen."


      "Möchte gern" is a totally correct and polite combination, very often used, but a little more polite than "he wants".
      er möchte/er will = he wants
      er möchte/er möchte gern = he would like to
      And then, "er mochte" = "he liked" (from "mögen" - er mag = he likes, er mochte = he liked) is another existing word. Thus, missing the dots over the o is not counted as a typo because it changes the meaning.


      I thought that if motion is involved, then we use the accusative case, and not the dative case. So, since we're traveling to the south pole here, shouldn't it technically be "er möchte zu den Südpol reisen"? Is this an exception to that rule?


      This rule applies when prepositions are used that can require either the dative or the accusative case, like: an, auf, hinter, neben, in, über, unter, vor, zwischen. For these prepositions the rule applies: stative -> dative, movement -> accusative.
      There are some prepositions though that always require dative, and "zu" is one of them: mit, nach, bei, von, zu, aus.
      And then there are some that always require accusative, like: durch, für, ohne, um.


      That's very helpful, thank you.

      [deactivated user]

        As a kid, I was taught :

        aus, ausser, bei, mit, nach, seit , von, zu

        durch, für, gegen, ohne, um


        Das war meine letzte Sentence in der Reise mit Duo. Er möchte zum Südpol reisen.


        I said 'Er Wurde'


        As "wurde" is another existing word, this will count as a mistake, not as a typo.
        Er wurde ... = He became ...
        Er würde ... = He would ...
        And there is also the female noun "Würde" (capital letter) = dignity. ;o)


        If this is correct, then by the same logic, I should be able to say: "Ich will zur Türkei reisen". I dont understand why the South Pole should be a special exception. Somebody please explain if you know the reason for this.


        The thing is that languages are not logic. There are some words where you use "zum/zur", like "zum Nordpol, zum Arzt, zur Oma, zur Schule". You just have to remember that. There is an old GDR song which might help with "South Pole": https://youtu.be/1qsMBC-Bmw4
        (Wow, the times when singers dragged the mic cable along with them! And that is not even the weirdest thing in this video.)


        Ha ha! Very good, thank you. I watched the video. In many ways, I find German is wonderfully logical but there are obviously certain characteristics that are 'just how they are', so I'll just remember this as it is.


        Why not, "Er will nach dem Südpol reisen."?


        Why use "möchte" for "wants" instead of "will?"


        They mean roughly the same thing, but I think "möchte" softens it a bit. It would be like in English, the difference between saying "I want this", which sounds a bit direct and perhaps even rude, versus saying "I would like this".

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