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  • a. They went out to dinner to friends every Friday.

  • b. They went out to dinner to friends' places every Friday.

  • c. They went out to dinner to a friend's place every Friday.

Which could be used if they went to different friends' places on different Fridays? Maybe they had four friends and they had dinner in one friend's place and then the other friend's place and so on.

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    Perhaps try: They dined at a different friend's place every Friday.
    – Billy Kerr
    Sep 1, 2023 at 10:26
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    Did they ever have the friends over to their own place for dinner? And are the friends all part of one large group, friends with each other? Quite a few variations are possible , if this isn't all clear from surrounding text... e.g. "They and their friends rotated hosting a dinner party for the group each Friday evening" or "Each Friday evening, they'd dine at the home of a different friend" Sep 1, 2023 at 14:43

2 Answers 2

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None of the above, for various reasons.

Firstly, "going out" to dinner usually means to a restaurant, not someone else's house. The same goes for dining out, or eating out. When the invitation is to someone's house, most would just say "going to dinner".

You don't give the full context for your quote, but I'm going to assume that you've already established who "they" are, and that they are the "friends" because, when you use a pronoun, it should be clear who you mean. So, you don't need to repeat yourself - you could simply say:

They met for dinner at one of their places every Friday.

Also, if you're speaking about this being their habit rather than a specific period of time, it would be better to say:

They would meet for dinner at one of their places every Friday.

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I upvoted Astralbee's good answer that explained why none of the three options are idiomatic in English. Prepositions change the meaning of sentences.

a) They went out TO dinner WITH friends…
b) They went out FOR dinner AT Alfredo's.
c) They were invited TO dinner BY friends every Friday evening/night.
d) They went TO dinner parties every Friday.

Which could be used if they went to different friends' places on different Fridays?

If the OP wants to keep the expression “friends' places” they could say:

e) Every Friday they went FOR/TO dinner AT a different friend's place / one of their friends' places

a) some people (perhaps a couple) went out for dinner with a group of friends.
b) a group of people went out to go to a restaurant called Alfredo's (an abbreviation for Alfredo's Restaurant)
c) They went to dinner at friends' every Friday night.
d) A formal evening meal at someone's home can be referred to as a dinner party
e) Every Friday they would have dinner at someone's place.

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    Thank you all so much, I upvoted all the replies! I thought 'went out' would imply a 'public place too, but when I was doing my research I came up with this: google.com/…
    – azz
    Sep 1, 2023 at 11:22
  • There are only three cases of this usage, which probably means that it is either regional or a personal quirk of the author, I suppose.
    – azz
    Sep 1, 2023 at 11:24
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    c) Strictly speaking, doesn't this imply some time before every Friday, their friends explicitly sent or made a new invitation? If it was a regular arrangement, you could say "They had a standing invitation" (from their friends to their regular Friday evening dinner party). Also being more pedantic - "invited" does not mean they always "went" - and double plus pedantic - in some places "dinner" means the evening meal, elsewhere it can mean the midday meal, so depending on context you either definitely should, or probably need not, specify "evening" Sep 1, 2023 at 14:38
  • I'm a bit confused about the fact that this answer first argues the preposition to/for makes a difference, just to have example a) and its explanation use the two interchangeably. Or is the point just that with/at/by changes the meaning? No objection about that; in that case, maybe I'm merely misled by the capitalization of for/to. Sep 2, 2023 at 5:19
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    @O.R.Mapper "go to/for dinner" are both correct and the change in meaning is slight, "to" focuses on location while "for" focuses on the goal. My aim is to show the OP that there are alternative ways of expressing a concept, i.e going to dinner at a friend's place. Astral Bee's answer explains the difference between "go out" to a restaurant and "go to" someone's place for dinner, it's a good answer that didn't need reiterating which is why I upvoted it.
    – Mari-Lou A
    Sep 2, 2023 at 5:52

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