A simple rule to help you remember the difference between another and other is

another + singular noun
other + plural noun 
others (a pronoun to replace other + plural noun)

  • I need another cup. (cup is singular so we use another)
  • I need other cups. (cup is plural so we use other)
  • I need others. (refers to other cups)



Another means:

  • one more, an additional, an extra
  • a different one; an alternative one

Another is a determiner (and a qualifier) that goes before a singular countable noun or a pronoun.

a) Another as a determiner

Another + Singular Countable noun

Another can be followed by a singular countable noun.

  • He has bought another motorbike.
  • Would you like another cup of coffee?
  • Don’t worry about the rain. We can go another day.
  • I think you should paint it another color.
  • We are having another baby.

Another + One

Another can be placed before “one” when the meaning is clear from the text before it.

  • I have already eaten two sandwiches though now I want another one. (= an additional sandwich)
  • A: You can borrow more of these books if you like. B: Ok, I’ll take another one. (= another book, one more book)

b) Another as a pronoun

Sometimes another is used as a pronoun.

  • That piece of cake was tasty. I think I’ll have another. (another = one more piece of cake)
  • I don’t like this room. Let’s ask for another. (another = another room)

Note: you can also say: “I think I’ll have another one.” and “Let’s ask for another one.”

Another + number + plural noun

Another can be used before a plural noun when there is a number before that noun or before phrases such as a couple ofa few etc.

  • In another 20 years my laptop is going to be obsolete.
  • I like this city so much that I’m going to spend another three days here.
  • We need another three teachers before classes begin.
  • He was given another couple of months to finish the sculpture.

Remember another is ONE word not two words (an other is incorrect)

other or another?
other or another?


Other is a determiner that goes before plural countable nouns, uncountable nouns or a pronoun.

Othermeans ‘additional or extra’, or ‘alternative’, or ‘different types of’.

a) Other as a determiner

Other + Plural Countable Noun

Other can be followed by a plural countable noun.

  • We have other styles if you are interested.
  • Have you got any other dresses, or are these the only ones?
  • Some days are sunny though other days can be very rainy.
  • I have invited some other people.
  • I can’t help you because I’m busy with other things.

Other + singular countable noun

we must use another determiner before it:

  • I don’t like the red one. I prefer the other colour.
  • Not: I prefer other colour.
  • Jeremy is at university; our other son is still at school.
  • He got 100% in the final examination. No other student has ever achieved that.
  • There’s one other thing we need to discuss before we finish.

b) Other as a pronoun

Other + Ones

Other can be placed before the pronoun “ones” when the meaning is clear from the text before it.

  • We don’t need those books, we need other ones. (= different books)
  • A: You can borrow my books if you like. B: Thanks, but I need other ones. (= other books)

Note: you can say other one when it refers to wanting the alternative.

  • I don't want this one, I want the other one.


Other as a determiner does not have a plural form

  • Mandy and Charlotte stayed behind. The other girls went home.
  • Not: The others girls …



Others as a pronoun

Others replaces “other ones” or "other + plural noun".
Only others can be used as a pronoun and not other.

  • I don’t like these postcards. Let’s ask for others. (others = other postcards)
  • Some of the presidents arrived on Monday. Others arrived the following day.


Others - the others

Often “(the) others” refers to “(the) other people”.

  • He has no interest in helping others. (= in helping other people)
  • What are the others doing tonight?

What is the difference between other and others?

Other is followed by a noun or a pronoun 
Others is a pronoun and is NOT followed by a noun.

  • These shoes are too small. Do you have any other shoes?
  • These shoes are too small. Do you have any others? (no noun after others)
other? others? the other?
other? others? the other?


a) The other as a determiner

The other with a singular noun means the second of two things or people, or the opposite of a set of two.

  • This computer here is new. The other computer is about five years old.
  • A: Do you know the Indian restaurant in Palmer Street?

B: Yes.

A: Well, the gift shop is on the other side of the street, directly opposite. (the opposite side)

The other with a plural noun means the remaining people or things in a group or set

  • Joel and Karen are here, but where are the other kids? (the remaining people in a group)
  • Where are the other two dinner plates? I can only find four. (the remaining things in a set – here six plates)

b) The other as a pronoun

We can use the other as a pronoun, especially to refer back to something which has been mentioned already in the sentence:

  • He had his hat in one hand and a bunch of flowers in the other.
  • She has two kittens, one is black and the other is all white.


When other is a determiner, it does not have a plural form:

  • These boxes are for books. The other boxes are for clothes.
  • Not: The others boxes …

When other as a pronoun refers to more than one person or thing, it takes the plural form, others:

  • Some scientists think we should reduce the number of flights to prevent global warming; othersdisagree.
  • Not: … other disagree.

Othermust have a determiner before it when it comes in front of a singular countable noun. If the noun is indefinite (e.g. a book, a woman, an idea), we use another:

  • I’ve posted the first package. What shall I do with that other package?
  • Not: What shall I do with other package?
  • After a month in Bolivia, I was ready to move to another country.
  • Not: … to move to other country.

We write another as one word:

  • There is another car park a little further down the same street.
  • Not: There is an other car park …

Another is singular. We don’t use it with plural nouns:

  • Other interesting places to visit include the old harbour and the castle.
  • Not: Another interesting places to visit …
be careful with typical errors!
be careful with typical errors!

Cr: englishgrammartoday,woodward

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