If I go to a bar and say:

"I have been here many times"

is it correct?

I know we use 'have been' for past experience when we are no longer at that place now.

  • 1
    Yes, it is correct. Just for the record, proofreading isn't encouraged here, on ELL. Please make sure you do not post questions to check the correctness of a sentence you personally use, but post questions with proper source and context. Cheers !
    – Varun Nair
    Mar 28, 2016 at 7:58
  • 1
    I have come here many times is preferable to I have been here many times, if you are still here.
    – Khan
    Mar 28, 2016 at 13:12
  • 1
    @Khan - I think both of them are fine. "I have been here many times" sounds perfectly normal to me.
    – stangdon
    Mar 28, 2016 at 19:29
  • Stangdon, Thanks. You are right. I think I have said the other way round. I have been here many times is more idiomatic than I have come here many times.
    – Khan
    Mar 29, 2016 at 2:58

3 Answers 3


I have been here many times.

The sentence is perfectly OK and idiomatic; Needless to say, it can be used when you are still in the bar as the word here as an adverb in the sentence means 'in or to the place where you are'.

You can use the verb 'be' to mean to go or to come in perfect tenses (look at the entry #8 under be, Wester's Dictionary). For Examples:

Have you ever been (gone) there?

I have been there many times.

Have you ever been (come) here?

I have been here many times.

As an alternative, you can say 'I have come here many times', but according to Ngram, 'I have been here many times' is more common.


Using the Present Perfect to talk about several actions which have occurred at different unspecified times in the past is one of the usage of Present Perfect. Here, Present Perfect suggests the process is not complete and more actions are possible as in

I've been to Florida ten times since my new girl friend lives there.

In my example and yours it's possible that we do these in the future, too.

However, generally speaking, this falls under the general usage of Present Perfect which is to say that an action happened at an unspecified time before now.

Your sentence simply mean I have had the experience of being here in other words you've been in this place before. If you were outside somewhere else and you wanted to talk about your experience of being in this bar, you'd say I've been there many times.

Here/there are simply adverbs of place and doesn't affect the meaning of Present Perfect. It depends on the experience that you had and, in your case, the immediate context that you're in which helps you to decide on using either there or here.

So to put it in a nutshell, yes it's cotrect to say

I have been here many times.

You can also listen to Sia Furler's Breathe me to make sure if your sentence is correct.

http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=1VcMh5gj6Y4 😉


Your understanding of "have been" is not correct.

For instance, "I have been waiting for four hours" implies that you are still waiting. In saying "I have been here before", the use of "here" establishes that you are, in fact, "here", just as you were in the past.

On the other hand, "I have been there before" indicates a past experience, since "I am there" is only used in rare circumstances. "I have been a liar" would ordinarily be used under the assumption that the speaker is no longer a liar. "I have been wrong before" would usually include at least the possibility that the speaker might (or might not) be wrong at present.

You may be confusing "I have been" with "I had been", which is definitely used to refer to a past event. Except, of course in some cases. For instance, you might say, "I have been waiting for four hours. I had been waiting for 2 hours when an ambulance passed by with its siren wailing." In this case, "had been waiting" says nothing about whether the condition of waiting applies at present, but common usage runs that way.

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