Let or Leave?

What’s the Difference Between Let and Leave?

Let and leave are two commonly confused words because they can be translated to Spanish as dejar. However, in English, they have very different meanings and usage.


Let means to allow or permit someone to do something. For example:

  • We let the children stay up late.
  • I’m going to let you in on a secret.
  • He let his anger get the best of him.
  • She let the opportunity slip by.


Leave means to go away from a place or person, and to create a distance between yourself and something else. It can also mean to abandon or leave behind something. Often, these two meanings combine. For example:

  • Can I leave my bag here?
  • He left without saying goodbye.
  • She left a note on the table.
  • I left my keys at home.
  • The train leaves at 10am.