Tell me please what is the difference between the two expressions. Here is the context:

Additionally, eating eggs has been linked to improved cholesterol levels and weight loss. In one study, women who ate eggs for breakfast, rather than a bagel, reported feeling fuller and ate less later in the day.

Would it have the same meaning if I were to use the word during instead of in? (Source)

2 Answers 2


Later in the day is more idiomatic there.

I will put this sandwich aside and eat it later in the day.

The implication is that I will eat this sandwich later in one sitting.

I will put this sandwich aside and eat it later during the day.

The implication is that I will take a bite or two from this sandwich starting later on and maybe a few more bites again even later.

Later in the day (month, year, season, whatever) refers to a time that falls within the span of the day, whereas during the day refers to a time-span that falls with that span, or to several times falling within that span.

  • 1
    Also eat it later over the day Frankly, I don't see any implications as for the number of eatings occurring in\during\over the day. In the OP's example, in the day definitely does not mean "in one sitting". Sep 6, 2018 at 19:22
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    @Mv Log: That's your opinion as a native speaker of Russian. I said "implication", BTW.
    – TimR
    Sep 6, 2018 at 20:29
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    @Mv Log: You'd need to ask that on math.stackexchange.com. There's no entailment of the meaning "in one sitting" but the words eat it later in the day establish no continuous aspect; simply an act of EATING will happen at some finite point later in the day. But the words eat it later during the day do establish some sort of continuous aspect, and what could that possibly mean other than stretching the act of EATING out in some manner over the course of the (remaining) day, such as by eating a few bites every now and then as you're working at your desk perhaps.
    – TimR
    Sep 6, 2018 at 20:54
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    later, at some time during the day would be different.
    – TimR
    Sep 6, 2018 at 20:55
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    @Mv Log: grammatical but not idiomatic.
    – TimR
    Sep 6, 2018 at 21:17

For time expressions with comparative adverbs like earlier, later, you have:

  • earlier or later in the day, week, month, year, evening, etc.

He has breakfast at 10:00 am, not later in the morning. [conjures up a specific time, like at 11:00 or 11:30 even if a specific one is not given.].

later in the day: at any specific point when the day is still the day.

While: earlier or later during the day, week, month, year, evening, etc.

He has breakfast at 10:00 am, not later during the morning. [could be at anytime after 10:00 am that is still morning.]

later in the day: suggests there will be a specific time while it is still day.

later during the day: suggests it will not be at night or at dawn but does not suggest a specific time like "later in the day".

Please note: When I say it suggests a specific time, I do not mean a time has to be given precisely. Whereas during refers to an entire time period without suggesting a specific point in that time.

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