I'll give you an example:

"I want to get an access to _____"

Should I fill it with "doing" or "do"?

Because normally after the "access to" collocation we use a noun, e.g "access to games", "access to a horizontal bar".

So, should I use "doing" as a verbal noun because there's only nouns used after that collocation, or should I use "do", because somewhy I feel, like it's an option too?

Would it be a huge horrible mistake if I say "give me an access to playing"?

  • Yes: "access" normally takes no complement at all, or else a preposition phrase as complement, but not a clause.
    – BillJ
    Commented Oct 21, 2018 at 15:38
  • 1
    I asked you the other day, and am asking you again: please use capitals with the first person pronoun. It's very jarring to native speakers to see i for I.
    – Lambie
    Commented Oct 21, 2018 at 16:54

1 Answer 1


The word access is usually not countable, so we would say:

I would like to get access to {something}.

No article.

You cannot get "access to" doing or playing.

You can get access to {something} (in order) to be able to do something.

I would like to get access to the gym (in order) to use the exercise equipment.

The phrase in order is optional.

I would like to get access to the members area of the website to play the online games there. Please give me access to it.

  • So, can i skip, for example, "to the gym" part and just say something like "I would like to get access to use the exercise equipment" Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 14:08
  • 1
    You could only omit to the gym if your words would be clearly understood in context. If you're speaking to someone whose job involves giving access to the gym on a daily basis, chances are very good that your remark would be understood :)
    – TimR
    Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 14:19
  • oh now I get it... So access can't be applied to actions, only to subjects whereas the words "can" and "may" can be applied to actions, e.g "can I use that equipment?" So in my example I had to say "can I play games?". But what do you think by the way, "can I play games" wouldn't mean exactly the same thing as "Give me access to play games", because in first sentence one asks for permission, but in the second one they are forcing the person to give them permission Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 21:13
  • Or maybe the alternative for forcing a person to give permission would be "let me". I know it's all actually asking for access but there're some emotional differences in meanings. Commented Dec 2, 2018 at 21:16

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