WORD CHOICE: WORD CHOICE: wish, hope, want, would likeUse wishto talk about things that are not true, not possible, or very unlikely• I wish I knew more about science. • She wished she hadn't said anything.• I wish I could win the lottery.Use hopeto talk about things that could happen, could have happened, or could be true• I hope you have a happy birthday. • I hope they got there in time. !! Do not use wish + (that) to say that you want something to happen in the future. Use hope• I hope (NOT wish) that we'll all meet again soon.• I hope you have a great time.You can use wish + nounin polite expressions meaning that you want someone to have something• We wish you a safe journey. • I wish you lots of luck.!! Wish to is very formal. Use want to or would like toto say what you want to happen• I want to write to him but I don't know his address. • I would like to run my own restaurant. tenses with 'wish'Things that you want to happen in the present or futureUse wish + past tenseorwish + would• I wish I didn't have to go.• I wish they would stop arguing.You can use thator leave it out• I wish that he would help more.!!In British English, you can either say 'I wish I was' or 'I wish I were', which is rather formal. In American English, you should use were• I wish I were ten years younger.Things that you want to have happened in the pastUse wish + past perfect tense• I wish I had paid more attention in class. ➔ See alsowish
Definition from the Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English Advanced Learner's Dictionary.