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Can someone explain to me when you ask a question with DO and when with ARE? In other words, Are you going to Spain next week? Do you like Chinese food? What is the rule here? We don't say Do you go to Spain next week? Are you liking Chinese food? ---Why?

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    Are you liking Chinese food? is probably never idiomatic outside of "Indian English", but Do you go to Spain next week? can certainly be perfectly natural in some contexts (for example, with you emphasised, within a conversation where it's already been mentioned that some [other] people are indeed going to Spain next week). – FumbleFingers May 14 '17 at 15:50
  • ...others may think different, but in the context I put forward above I think the nuance of difference between 1) Do you go to Spain next week? and 2) Are you going to Spain next week? is that the do- version focuses more on your current status (as one of the people selected to go next week), where the as- version puts more emphasis on the matter of something you might or will do in the future. – FumbleFingers May 14 '17 at 15:57
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    And then there's the McDonald's commercial, "I'm Lovin' It" – Xanne May 15 '17 at 4:58
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As statements, your two examples would be:

  • You like Chinese food
  • You are going to Spain next week

Next, find the main verb:

  • You like Chinese food
  • You are going to Spain next week

Now you need to figure out if the verb is an auxiliary verb. If it is, then it is what's inverted in subject-auxiliary inversion:

  • Are you going to Spain next week?

If there is no auxiliary, you need to add the proper form of do. It will be the auxiliary that is inverted:

  • Do you like Chinese food?

This is a type of do-support.

  • What about need? "I need a rope" we can either ask "Need you a rope?" or "Do you need a rope?" – SovereignSun May 16 '17 at 6:31
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    @SovereignSun That's part of figuring out if something is a modal or not. But it is tricky, since some verbs are modals in some cases and not in others. As this post explains, need is sometimes modal, sometimes not. Another example is do, as it is not a modal in "You did your homework". Therefore, "Did you your homework?" is wrong, while "Did you do your homework?" is right. – Laurel May 16 '17 at 15:16

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