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Hi,

What do you think of the following?

1. There are different means of transportation such as car, bus, and train.

2. There are different means of transportation such as cars, buses, and trains.

3. There are different means of transportation such as the car, the bus, and the train.

4. There are different means of transportation such as the cars, the buses, and the trains.

5. There are different means of transportation such as a car, a bus, and a train.

My hunch tells me choices 2 and 3 are the best. But since I am not a native speaker, I can't give a definite right or wrong answer. What do native speakers think about the previous sentences?


How about if I make "means" singular? Would that change anything?

6. You need to use a means of transportation such as a car, a bus, or a train.

7. You need to use a means of transportation such as car, bus, or train.

8. You need to use a means of transportation such as the car, the bus, or the train.

9. You need to use a means of transportation such as cars, buses, or trains.

10. You need to use a means of transportation such as the cars, the buses, or the trains.

My guess here is that choices 6, 8, and 9 are the best.

Comments  
Magic79What do you think of the following?

I think "different" doesn't work there. Native speakers do this, too, and it doesn't work for them, either. You need a comma. If you must use the word order, maybe number 2: "There are various means of transportation, such as cars, buses, and trains." Number 3 is correct enough, but nobody would put it that way.

Magic79How about if I make "means" singular? Would that change anything?

Yes. Numbers 9 and 10 are no good, 9 because of the clash in number, and 10 because "the" is unidiomatic. Numbers 6 and 7 are OK and about equal. Number 8 fails because of "the car". Those pesky articles, eh? It would have to be "your car" or something like that.