What's the Difference between "Been to" and "Gone to"?


Let's have a look at these two sentences:

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  • "David has been to Japan."
  • "David has gone to Japan."
Is there any difference in the meaning?
 
There sure is!
Japan

Gone to

"Gone to" means that you've traveled to some place and haven't returned yet.

Examples:
  • "Jessica has gone to the supermarket. I wonder when will she come back?"
  • "Dennis has gone to France for the summer, so you can call again in September."

Been to

"Been to" means that you've traveled to some place and have already returned.
 
Examples:
  • "Mark has been to the supermarket. Now he's taking a shower."
  • "Joe has been to France five times, so he is very familiar with it."

So… back to the original sentences, here is the difference between "gone to" and "been to":

David has been to Japan = David has traveled to Japan and back.

David has gone to Japan = David has traveled to Japan and hasn't returned yet.

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