I want to ask a friend to come to visit, so is it correct to say "when is the soonest you can come" or "when can you come the soonest" or either of them are correct?

  • 2
    Idiomatically, When is the earliest you can come is more common today. Commented Feb 8, 2020 at 16:43
  • @FumbleFingersReinstateMonica I know it doesn't matter in this case, or in most cases, probably, but note that Google Books Ngram Viewer now shows 1800 to 2008 as the default year range, while reliable results may only be gleaned using a year range (from 1800) up to 2000. They had data up to 2008 before, obviously, but they stopped using the correct year range a couple months ago for no apparent reason.
    – user3395
    Commented Feb 8, 2020 at 20:02

2 Answers 2


"When is the soonest you can come?" is correct. Your second option sounds somewhere between 'wrong' and 'like something out of archaic poetry'.


Most people would say "How soon can you come?" or "When is the earliest you can come?"

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