Wo? Wohin? Woher?What's the difference?
The difference between Wo, Wohin & Woher in German is easy to understand. With a few simple tricks, you'll remember it in no time!
Use Wo? when you want to ask "Where at". Use Wohin? when you want to ask "where to". And lastly, use Woher? when you want to ask "Where from?".
The difference between Wo, Wohin & Woher in German is very straightforward. While we would mostly just use "where" in English, the German language distinguishes three kinds of "where" (in English, this used to be the case, too: where, whence & whither).
|German||English||Grandma English 👵🏻|
To summarize: Wo indicates where someone (or something) is. Wohin asks where someone (or something) is going to. Woher asks where someone (or something) is coming from.
Now let's have a look at some examples.
Wo asks: "Where are you right now?" / "Where are you at?".
You would use Wo to ask where someone is (or was) at a specific point in time:
Wohin introduces direction: Direction moving away from the speaker:
You could also translate Wohin as "where to": "Where to are you going?" (of course, nobody would say this in English, but it might help to remember it this way)
The opposite of Wohin is Woher: Now we're not asking "where to?", but "where from?":
You can also use "Woher" when you want to ask something along the lines of "How do you know this?":
Translated literally (into very bad English 😅): "Where from do you know this?".