Coming & Going 와요, 가요, 다녀요

In Korean the words 와요 (wayo = come), 가요 (gayo = go), and 다녀요 (danyeoyo = go to and from regularly) are used differently from their English equivalents.

If you meet some classmates in the street and they ask where you are going, you reply ‘집에 가요’ (jibe gayo = I am going home). However if speaking on the phone to someone who is at home, a Korean will say ‘지금 집에 가요’ (jigeum jibe gayo = I am going home), whereas in English you would say, ‘I am coming home now.’ This is because in Korean the use of 와요 and 가요 depends on your location (the speaker’s location), rather than the location of the person to whom you are speaking.

Finally, in English we might ask, ‘Which university do you go to?’ However, in Korean this would be, ‘어느 학교에 다녀요?’ (eoneu hakgyoe danyeoyo). The verb 다녀요 (danyeoyo = go) is used when you go somewhere on a regular basis. It implies a process of going to and from that place repeatedly. So, let me simplifies at below examples about the difference between 다녀요 (danyeoyo = go) and 가요 (gayo = go), even though they bring out similar meaning.

1) 다녀요 (danyeoyo = go)
어느 병원에 다녀요?                                      Which hospital do you go to?
Eoneu pyeongwone danyeoyo?

The word in this sentence is used only to ask someone who’s always or repeatedly going to that place. As in the question above, it ask about going to hospital. Of course, this kind of question is only to be asked at a doctor or nurse or someone else that repeatedly going to and from the hospital.

2) 가요 (gayo = go)
어느 병원에 가요?                                        Which hospital are you going to?
Eoneu pyeongwone gayo?

This kind of question is used to refer to a single trip. It implies that at present you are on your way to the hospital.

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