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"what for things should I pack?" I'm asking someone for help on what items I should bring, and shouldn't bring, for a trip. I've gotten curious if this question works.

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    Remove the 'for' and it's fine. Mar 22 at 13:29
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    It's true, the word "for" isn't needed here. But for a more useful answer, please use the "Edit" button to tell more about why you felt like including it, so that can be addressed. Mar 22 at 16:11
  • It looks like a word-for-word translation of the Dutch "wat voor dingen zal ik inpakken".
    – Joachim
    Mar 22 at 16:40

1 Answer 1

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No. If you are asking for a list of things you ask "What things should I pack". This expects an answer like "You should pack pants, socks, and a toothbrush". The word "what" is a pronoun that replaces the nouns in the answer, and (according to grammar rules) is moved to the front of the sentence.

The answer doesn't contain the word "for", nor does the question.

If you asking a "for" question, for example, if you expect an answer like, "You should pack for the marathon", you could ask "What should I pack for?" (or more formally "For what should I pack?". That would be a rare use (because you normally know the reason for packing).

You may want to ask about the general ideas, not specifics. In English you can say "What kind of things should I pack?". But in context the words "kind of things" isn't always needed.

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