AT the weekend or ON the weekend?

Saturday + Sunday = the weekend

Weekend is written as ONE word.

You do NOT write it as two words (week end – incorrect)
or with a dash/hyphen (week-end – incorrect)

AT or ON the weekend?

Complete this sentence…

  • I play football ___ the weekend.

Do we say AT the weekend or ON the weekend?

What is the difference?

AT the weekend is used in British English

ON the weekend is used in American English

  • I play football AT the weekend. – British English
  • I play football ON the weekend. – American English

Both prepositions can be used in this sentence. It depends on where you are speaking or using English.

  • We used to always go to the beach AT the weekend. – British English
  • We used to always go to the beach ON the weekend. – American English

Note: We do NOT say in the weekend.

More example sentences: (Think about when the sentence would be used… in British or American English)

  • I think I’ll visit my parents at the weekend.
  • What do you usually do on the weekend?
  • I read an entire book on the weekend.
  • I’m going to set aside an hour at the weekend to clean the bathroom.

On Fridays after work or school, you may hear people say “Finally, it’s the weekend!” even though it is not Saturday yet.

Last weekend – Next weekend

We do not use prepositions before LAST or NEXT.

  • We went to the beach last weekend.
  • I think I’ll go to the beach next weekend.

Here we are specifying that it was the weekend that just went by or the weekend that is coming up.

Both last and next can be replaced by at the/on the and retain the same meaning.

We also do not use prepositions before each, every, this, that + weekend.

Every weekend

We don’t say all the weekends, we say every weekend.

  • I’m very active. I play football every weekend.
  • When I was lived in Australia, I went to the beach every weekend.

Remember, after EVERY we have a singular noun (= every + singular noun) so we don’t say every weekends (incorrect)

Over the weekend / During the weekend

Sometimes you will hear people say over the weekend or during the weekend

In general: over the weekend = during the weekend = at/on the weekend

It can refer to the entire duration of the weekend

  • My mother is coming to stay with us over the weekend. (= both days)

Or it can refer to something that happens at a single point but at some time within the duration of the weekend. It is not necessarily on both days.

  • She said she would call me over the weekend.
  • I’ll fix it over the weekend. = At some point during the course of the weekend.

A long weekend

A long weekend is a weekend that has at least three days due to a public holiday falling on either the Friday or Monday.

Friday is a public holiday so the Friday, Saturday and Sunday is a long weekend.

Weekend or Weekends?

Weekend is mostly used in singular form. However it can be used in its plural form (weekends) when we are referring to a number of different weekends over a period of time.

  • We went to the beach at/on the weekend. ( = only one weekend, the one that just went by)
  • We spent many weekends at the beach. ( = numerous weekends in the past)

One final thing, we don’t write weekend with a hyphen in the middle.

  • week-end (incorrect)
  • weekend (correct)

Summary Chart

The Weekend in English - AT the weekend or ON the weekend?

What do you normally do on the weekend?

Lesson tags: At, Days, On, Prepositions, Regional Differences, Time
Back to: English Course > Prepositions in English