What's the difference between:

My brother's traveling to Argentina FOR business


My brother's flying to Argentina ON business?



According to the Oxford Dictionary, meaning 8 of on is engaged in: that is the sense that would apply in this sentence. Here is one of the examples that they provide:

Susan was called out of town on business.

Here is a typical reference:

I went to New York City on business quite often back then. In our image: Susan Alan (2009)

Meaning 4 for for is Having (the thing mentioned) as a purpose or function.

Here is a typical reference:

Visitors coming to the city for business, combined with those attracted by the sights, soon made the tourist and convention industry second only to government. Ottawa: An Illustrated History

Both are valid, though in my opinion on business is more common in spoken British English. The choice would depend on the speaker or writer's intended meaning: on means "engaged in", and for means "with the purpose of".

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I've seldom come across the second sentence. In fact, I doubt it's correct! When you use 'on business,' it is generally...

'on business visa', 'on business trip...' and so on...

So, for the given sentences, I think the first one sounds better.

My brother is traveling to Argentina for business.

Then, your brother is on a business trip (to Argentina).

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for business can mean "intending to conduct business" or "looking to get business (e.g. customers)".

for her business could mean "representing her own company" or "on behalf of the company she works for".

on business would mean "engaged in or conducting business".

Thus, for business (without modifier) has a prospective sense. It would suggest that your mother might not actually have this Argentinian business yet. Its meaning would be unclear without additional information.

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For is a temporal preposition :

My brother's traveling to Argentina for the first time.

On is a preposition of time, designating a future date.

My brother's traveling to Argentina on Tuesday.

As is, neither of my brother's traveling to Argentina FOR business nor my brother's traveling to Argentina ON business, makes any sense to me.

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