Other times or at other times



I've seen the following used in real texts:

1. Other times, ...
2. At other times, ...

So when should I use "at" and when can I leave it out?

Posted 24 February 2003

"Other times" can be used with or without the preposition "at," often interchangeably. The phrase needs to fit comfortably in the sentence. Of course, there will be a reference to an earlier event For example:

Sometimes he would arrive late; other times he would not arrive at all.

At certain times he would arrive late; at other times he would not arrive at all.

You can get your clue for which phrase works better by connecting it to the previous reference.

The two sentences above are both fine. "At" or its absence is parallel with the construction in the first clause. However, you could also add "at" to the first sentence and omit it in the second sentence.

"Other times" seems a bit more descriptive of the event, while "at other times" focuses on noting the event in a time frame. In addition, "at other times" seems to have a slightly more formal register than "other times" does."

Return to the Key Word Index