1. “My grandmother, along with two of her friends, (is/are) planning a trip to Mexico.”
  2. The summary, plus all these reports, (needs, need) to be typed by tomorrow.
    Fill in the gaps please .I am confused about the correct answer. And please explain why?
  • 1
    This might not be so clear, w.r.t. an answer. The expression "along with" can sometimes be considered to be used as a coordinator, and the same can be said of the expression "plus". It depends on the speaker (or writer) as to their intent--though, punctuation and intonation can be used as indicators as to that intent. There's some related info in the 2002 reference grammar by H&P, CGEL, on page 1318-9.
    – F.E.
    Jun 18, 2015 at 17:32

2 Answers 2


1 - is. 2 - needs.

Because you've isolated the additional items (your grandmother's friends and the reports) from the item you are talking about, you are effectively talking about a singular item, so you need the singular form of the verb afterwards.

You could have said "My grandmother and two of her friends are..." and "The summary and these reports need...".


Read it this way...

My grandmother, [along with two of her friends], is planning a trip to Mexico

the string in between the commas is additional information.

  • 1
    Information is not a count noun in American or British or Australian English; it may be in Indian English(es) but I don't know. Is it?
    – user6951
    Jun 19, 2015 at 3:26
  • @pazzo mea culpa! It's not in InE either! Thanks. corrected
    – Maulik V
    Jun 19, 2015 at 8:55
  • 2
    Strangely enough, it is in Italian....
    – user6951
    Jun 19, 2015 at 12:26

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