Question is simple and straightforward. Which one to use when and why?

  1. The data is available for the public. (Why or why not correct)
  2. The data is available to the public. (Why or why not correct)

Which one (to or for) to use, as consulting some resources online could not find any relevant justification when to use which.

  • 3
    If a prepositional clause after available starts with for, that's usually an "adverb of purpose" - for example, how / why something is to be used, as in The data is available for verification. It could also be followed by a verb where to is in "infinitive marker" rather than a preposition (The data is available to verify). But we usually use the preposition to to reference a potential recipient, as in The data is available to trusted partners for verification. Commented Sep 26, 2019 at 12:44

2 Answers 2


Further looking for the difference found out some fact that actually make sense as well like:

Used available for when some time constraint applies on the use or access of the object. Example: Mr. John is available for next 37 minutes.

Also used available for when availability is being expressed for some verb. Example: Water is available for drinking.

Used available to when expressing that some thing can be used by a noun. Example: All the books in the library are available to public.

Note: I am not an English expert, so this answer is open for all to make amends and edits for better explanation. Thanks :).


Either is correct.

In American English, I idiomatically hear "to the public" being used as an indication that there is no limit on who can access it, and "for the public" to imply that it is for the public's benefit.

You could say:

The [vaccine's effectiveness] data is available for the public.

The public may care to access data about how good a vaccine is before choosing to take it.

The [Department of Transportation's highway usage] data is available to the public.

This information is available freely, but may not be of an immediate benefit to people reading it.

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