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Kwiziq community member
19 August 2018
Is "avoir à" a possible alternative to "devoir"
Is avoir à a possible alternative to devoir?
This question relates to:French lesson "Devoir vs avoir besoin de to express "to need to""
I have heard "avaoir à" used in some specific context loke:
Tu n'as qu'à ranger ta chambre. -- You only have to clean up your room.
But I found a more comprehensive discussion here: https://www.reddit.com/r/French/comments/1urs43/avoir_à_vs_devoir/
Kwiziq language super star
21 August 2018
As the lesson points out 'devoir' can be both 'to have to' or 'to need to' something .
'Avoir à' is mostly used to indicate an idea of need rather than must as in :
Tu n'as pas à t'excuser = You don't need to apologise (in other words - it was not your fault)
Tu n'as pas à faire ça = You don't need to do that ( or even: there's no need for you to do that)
J'ai à faire = I have things to do (there are things I need to do)
so it may be best to use 'devoir' or 'falloir' to convey the idea of 'must'.
Hope this helps!
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