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Correct usage of the verbs «идти» and «ехать»

Hello, dear student!

Today we are going to consider verbs once again, namely «идти» [iti] and «ехать» [ekhat’]. Russian-speaking learners very often confuse these 2 verbs – they consider them having the same meaning because there is no a substantial difference in translation between these verbs in some languages. But in this case you have to know the difference. Let’s turn to examples again and consider how to use these verbs:

Идти [iti] - to go (on foot)

We use this verb, when we are talking about movement, but there is one little but important detail – we can go («идти») only on foot/using our feet, for example:

Я иду в гостиницу, прохожу площадь Ленина и любуюсь цветами [Ya idu f gastinitsu, prakhazhu ploshhad' Lenina i l'ubuyus' tsvitami] – I am going (on foot) to the hotel, passing the Lenina Square and enjoying the flowers there.

This example makes clear that a person goes to the hotel on foot, he is walking, not taking a car or the subway – he is going using his feet.

Look at the other examples:

Мы идем в ресторан вместе с подругой [My id'yom v ristaran s padrugaj] – We are going (on foot) to the restaurant with my friend.

Идём с нами, вместе будет веселее! [Id'yom s nami, vmest'e budit visilee] – Let's go with us, it would be of more fun to be together!

Ехать [ekhat'] - to go (by transport)

When you want to say, that you are going by means of transport, you should use the verb «ехать», for example:

Мы ехали в гостиницу на такси [My ekhali v gastinitsu na taksi] – We were going to the hotel by taxi.

Я люблю ехать мимо площади на велосипеде [Ya l'yubl'yu ekhat' mima ploshhadi na vilasipede] – I like passing the square by bike.

If you want to use the verb «ехать» in present, future or past tense, you should use the following forms:

Future simple: Я поеду [Ya pa’edu]
Present simple: Я еду [Ya edu]
Past simple: Я ездила [Ya ezdila]

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