I was wondering if it would be possible to say: "I have been wanting to go to iceland now for more than 10 years!". given the fact that 'want' is a stative verb it is not common to use a progressive tense, but in this context I figured it might be plausible to put emphasis on the duration. Is this correct?



3 Answers 3


As a native speaker, there is nothing wrong or awkward sounding in your sentence:

I have been wanting to do something for such a long time

It is informal and used in conversation, usually to signify the realisation of a dream:

I have been wanting to go to Antarctica for ages to see the penguins.


Sure, there's nothing wrong with it. I'd phrase it like so: "I've been wanting to go to Iceland for over ten years now!"

Wanting could be replaced by longing, or wanting to by dreaming of. Go could be replaced by travel or maybe visit. I bring this up because it feels too literal as is, there isn't enough emotion to it. "I've been dreaming of visiting Iceland for over ten years now..." feels more wistful and effective, and so seems more natural.


I have been wanting to go to Iceland now for more than 10 years.

The OP is right that want is a stative verb, but you can use it in the continuous to emphasize an ongoing or repeated process. You can also use the want in the continuous for indirectness or politeness.

So there's nothing wrong with the sentence presented above, in which the want has been used in the continuous for emphasis. Please look up "want in the continuous" in the following link:


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