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  5. "Ich gehe in die Ferien."

"Ich gehe in die Ferien."

Translation:I am going on vacation.

May 1, 2013



Doesn't "in" require dative? [EDIT: Answering my own question] I just reached the Prepositions unit and discovered that "in" phrases (as well as those of some other prepositions) can either be dative or accusative. Motion towards (i.e., wohin? (where to?)) uses accusative, whereas location (i.e., wo? (where?)) uses dative. Sorry for the erroneous feedback, Duolingo! source: http://german.about.com/library/blcase_dat2.htm


I understand the two-way (dativ/akkusativ) prep "in" but still can't work this out why this is an accusative case. "Going on vacation" sounds to me more like a state rather than a motion/action...


I think "going" is intrinsically a directional action, however we actually use the sentence.


The distinction between the dative and accusative use of 'in' and a couple of other German prepositions is sometimes oversimplified to say the accusative is used when there is (figurative or real) motion and the dative is used when there is no motion. This is not quite right. When there is motion within the confines of an area, the dative is also used. When one passes from one area INTO another, then the accusative is used. Therefore: Er geht in einem Kreis (=circle) herum. But: Er geht in einen Kreis hinein.

I'm not a native speaker of German, and this usage took me a bit by surprise too, but the reasoning seems clear. There is figurative motion between two areas or time frames, from ordinary time (in)to vacation. Though it's not an idiomatic transition like 'I'm going on vacation,' you could understand it as 'I'm entering vacation.' However, I wouldn't expect Duo to accept that.


I understand that it's 'I am going on vacation' but why isn't 'on' a possible translation of 'in' when you hoover over it (in this case)?


Because German speakers say they're going "in" a vacation. But English speakers say they're (going) "on" vacation.


Hover hints are not perfect. Report them if you see something wrong or missing.


Why is it "die Ferien" here but just "Ferien" in other sentences? Are they interchangeable, or is there a significant difference.


"in die Ferien" is a prepositional phrase which needs a definite or indefinite article. Ferien is only plural, so it works without an article. The word "cheese" functions the same way in English. You can't say, "I am eating a cheese." you say, "I am eating cheese."


Is "I am going into the holiday" a reasonable translation? (I mean, could the German actually mean that? I'm assuming "going" would be like "heading" here.)


I have the same question with you.

This is my guess: 'I'm going to the vacation.' and 'I'm on vacation.' are distinguished by the article.

Since 'in' is one of those 'prepositions governing two cases', according to the 'moving-accusative, place-dative' rule, here it means I'm heading to a vacation.

And what's more, I am on a vacation would be 'Ich gehe in den Ferien.'

Sorry I'm not giving any certain answer. It's just my speculation. Hope some native speaker or advanced learner could confirm or disprove it>.<


What's the difference between die Ferien and der Urlaub?


Both "Ferien" and "Urlaub" mean holiday/vacation, but "Ferien" is more used for school (e.g. Schulferien) and "Urlaub" is more used for workers (e.g. Arbeitsurlaub).

Source: http://answers.yahoo.com/question/index?qid=20110526082138AATbWbq


I still dont understand why here using "on" instead of "to"


prepositions in most languages don't always have a logic behind them. 'going on vacation' is a fixed construction in English, you could say, "I am going to my vacation spot" but not "to vacation."


If using English grammar this should be 'I go during the holidays'


Yeah, I translated it this way too, so if it's wrong, I'd like to know how would you say it in German...

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