Intention and Suggestion: -(으)ㄹ래요
After all that hanja we covered, It is time we return to some good old Korean grammar. We kick things off with a final way to make a suggestion to someone, but one you can also use to express your plan or intent to do something. That Korean grammar topic is -(으)ㄹ래요. It is a rather important pattern, so let’s take a gander.
The first use of the pattern -(으)ㄹ래요 to make a suggestion or ask what someone’s preference is in something. In this regard, this pattern is the same as a previous pattern: -(으)시겠어요. However, whereas that pattern is very polite, this version is not as polite and is mainly used between close friends in spoken language. When you translate it in this use, you can use “Want to…?” or “How about…?”. Let’s take a look at an example.
Sentence: 토요일에 백화점에서 같이 쇼핑할래요?
Translation: How about we go shopping together on Saturday?
There is, however, a second use for the pattern -(으)ㄹ래요. This use is to express your intent and plan to do something. Like is the case for its suggestive use, this pattern is used among close friends and does not convey a sense of politeness. It is also mainly reserved for spoken language only. When used to express intent, you can translate it as: “Going to” or “Will”. Let’s look at an example:
Sentence: 다음 주에 고향에 갈래요.
Translation: Next week I’ll be going to my hometown.
How To Use
Using the form -(으)ㄹ래요 is not difficult at all, though a few things you will have to keep in mind when using it. Some of those things to keep in mind will make sure you make clear you are either expressing intent or suggestion. But, first let’s get the conjugation rules out of the ways. This expression can only be used with verbs, not adjectives. The conjugation rules themselves are pretty simple and same as many we have already seen, but let’s go over them:
- If the verb stem ends in a vowel, you attach -ㄹ래요.
- If the verb stem ends in a consonant, you attach -을래요.
As for all verb endings using this conjugation rules, you will have to keep the Korean irregular verbs in mind as some don’t play nice with this type of conjugation.
There is only a slight nuance between the intent use and the propositive use of -(으)ㄹ래요 so it is important to get that nuance right. When you use is to make a suggestion the sentence is a question so make sure your intonation is clear on that. For the intent use the sentence is a factual statement so the intonation remains the same start to finish. Keep this in mind.
Propositive -(으)ㄹ래요 Extra Facts
There are still some remarks left that generally only apply to one use over the other. Let’s go over the unique remarks for the propositive use of -(으)ㄹ래요.
First, note there is another form for this pattern: -지 않을래요 or 안 -(으)ㄹ래요. While these are negative forms, there is no difference in meaning between those forms and -(으)ㄹ래요. It is similar to English how you can use ‘not’ to make a suggestion to do something (“Why don’t we go shopping?”).
Second, even though this expression is not overly polite, sometimes you can still feel a need to honor the person you are talking to (such as 할머니 – grandmother). That is still possible, but for that the form changes to -실래요.
Lastly, the answer can be given using the intent -(으)ㄹ래요 or the pattern -(으)ㄹ게요.
Intent -(으)ㄹ래요 Extra Facts
There aren’t as many things to say on this use of -(으)ㄹ래요. In fact, there is only one remark to make. You simply cannot use this expression with anyone else, but yourself. You can only express your plans and intentions with it.