I have learned that the correct form is "I work at night". Recently, I saw a movie and one of the characters mentioned "I work nights", Is there any difference between them? Or which one is correct?

1 Answer 1


Depending on context, they could have practically the same meaning. Any difference is a nuanced one which may be irrelevant in a given context.

I work nights.

My shift is the night shift, or my normal work-day begins in the evening.

I work at night.

It is night-time when I work.

The word nights implies a regular, routine, or habitual situation. The phrase at night could be understood to mean the same, but it does not entail that meaning. The listener would have to infer it from context.

So, if a cat-burglar said

I work at night.

It would be a statement of fact.

But if a cat-burglar said

I work nights.

it could be somewhat humorous, because the cat-burglar is implying that he works the night-shift, that is, that he has a regular routine and a regular job.

  • 1
    We can also say we work days, mornings, afternoons, or weekends. Oh and there’s “open to close”, but that’s a tangent.
    – ColleenV
    Commented Sep 24, 2018 at 20:04
  • ColleenV parted ways, Sorry, what do “open to close” and "that’s a tangent" mean? Thanks!
    – Loviii
    Commented Dec 9, 2019 at 2:04

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