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We get to Heathrow / get in Heathrow / get in to Heathrow / get into Heathrow.

Do all of them mean "We arrive at Heathrow."?

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    It’s expected here at EL&U that one do some independent research each before posting a question, and then provide the results of that research. Where have you looked? What did you discover? If you find it inadequate, then why? What do you think the answer is? Why? Commented May 3 at 19:50
  • They all mean that, but I think only the first and last are idiomatic.
    – Barmar
    Commented May 3 at 20:17
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    I think I'd be more likely to refer to getting to Heathrow (literal spatial reference) if traveling by road or rail (to start my trip abroad). On the return journey I'd be traveling by air, and landing in a plane. In that case I'd be far more likely to use the "container metaphor" and say I was coming into Heathrow. Commented May 3 at 22:25

2 Answers 2

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Three of them mean that and one is a mistake.

We get to Heathrow at 11am

This means we arrive at Heathrow at 11am. It could be by plane, or you could be driving to Heathrow, or going there as part of your job.

We get into Heathrow at 11am

Also means you arrive at Heathrow at 11am, but would normally only hear it about arriving by plane, not about driving to the airport or other ways. You will hear this all the time from pilots announcing arrival times to their passengers.

We get in to Heathrow at 11am

This means exactly the same as the above. An absolute language purist might argue it's a mistake and it should be "into", but you will hear this all the time from native speakers.

We get in Heathrow at 11am

This is incorrect, but you might hear it spoken by someone who just dropped the "to".

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  • My thoughts exactly, and very well expressed Commented May 3 at 22:34
  • ldoceonline.com/dictionary/get-in what do you think about second sense? Is it a phrasal verb? Is that usage correct?
    – darkhealer
    Commented May 3 at 22:45
  • Yes and yes. Note that you need the "to" in this case. Commented May 3 at 23:30
  • Thanks. But in my examples, they aren't phrasal verbs. Right?
    – darkhealer
    Commented May 4 at 0:07
  • Both "get to" and "get into" are phrasal verbs. Commented May 4 at 0:24
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  • We got to Heathrow

Means we arrived at the airport.

  • We get in Heathrow

This doesn't make sense in itself, but you might say "Lunch? We'll get in Heathrow", so it is something that happens within the airport.

  • We get in to Heathrow

I don't think this makes much sense.

  • We got into Heathrow

This is similar to "got to Heathrow", however, the emphasis is a bit different. This one means we actually arrived at the inside of Heathrow. "We got to Heathrow" could mean this, or it could mean we are on the road having arrived at the road outside of Heathrown. If you say "We got into Heathrow" the emphasis is that you arrived actually inside the building.

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  • Even if the pilot knows passengers won't be able to disembark for half an hour after landing (some airport security issue, perhaps), he'll still announce "We'll be coming into Heathrow in about 5 minutes". He uses in because they're above (the entire airport, inclusive of runways), not because he's thinking about being inside the buildings. Commented May 4 at 1:57

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