How to use Wish in English
We use the verb wish in English when we want a situation to be different to what it actually is
Wish + Infinitive
When we use wish followed by a verb in the to-infinitive form.
- I wish to speak to Mr Campos, please
- I wish to visit you in the summer, if possible.
- I wish to go now
- I wish to learn the truth about what happened.
- I wish to speak to your supervisor, please
- I wish to speak to the manager
Wish + object + to + infinitive:
In the same way, we can use ‘wish’ with an object and an infinitive.
- I do not wish you to publish this article.
- I wish these people to leave.
Wish + Past Simple
We use wish + past simple to express that we want a situation in the present to be different.
- I wish I spoke Italian.
- She wishes she was on a beach.
- I wish it was friday
- I wish I lived in Spain
- I wish that we didn’t have to go to school today
- She wishes it was June
- I wish that you weren’t busy tomorrow
- I wish that I had a big house
- He wishes he had a lot of money
- I wish I lived somewhere more interesting
- I wish that I had a big car.
- They wished that you lived close to the beach
Wish + Past Continuous
We use wish + past continuous to express that we want to be doing a different action in the present
- I wish I was lying on a beach now.
- They wish it wasn’t snowing
- He wishes he was leaving tomorrow
- I wish it wasn’t raining.
- She wishes she was surfing in Samara Beach
- I wish you weren’t leaving tomorrow.
- She wishes she was swimming at the pool.
- I wish I was eating Italin Food in Rome
- I wish I was going to the gym more often
- She wishes she was working in another organization
- He wishes he was doing something more fun
Wish + Past Perfect
We use wish + past perfect to express a regret, or that we want a situation in the past to be different.
- I wish I hadn’t eaten so much.
- I wish they’d come on holiday with us.
- She wishes she had written down the phone number.
- I wish I had studied harder at school.
- I wish I hadn’t spent so much money last month
- I wish I had drunk so much last night
- I wish I had brought my camera.
- They wish they had studied more for their exam
- I wish I had studied harder for the exam
- I wish she hadn’t come
- I wish he hadn’t made that mistake
- I wish I had worked harder when I was at school.
Wish + Could
We use past tense modals would and could to talk about wishes for the future
- I wish I could have a better house
- I wish I could speak spanish
- She wishes she could drive a car
- I wish that Mike could help me with math
- I wish I could see you next week
- I don’t like my work. I wish I could get a better job.
I wish I would
We use “wish” + would + infinitive to express dissatisfaction with the present situation.
- I wish you would stop making so much noise.
- I wish that you wouldn’t eat all the chocolate
- I wish that it would stop raining
- I wish that noise would stop
- I wish you would stop smoking
- She wishes he would talk to her more often
- I wish you would stop drinking
- I wish my parents would let me stay up late
- I wish Jenny wouldn’t ask so many questions.
- I wish my boss would consider my ideas
I wish I were
In more formal English, we use the subjunctive form ‘were’ and not ‘was’ after ‘wish’.
- I wish I were taller.
- I wish it were Saturday today.
- I wish he were here.
- I wish I were a millionaire
- I wish I were rich
You can also use ‘wish’ with a noun to ‘offer good wishes’.
- I wish you all the best in your new job.
- We wish you a merry Christmas.
Wish and Hope
We use Hope to express something we want to happen in the future
- I hope it’s sunny tomorrow.
- I hope she passes her exam next week.
- I hope she gets the job