[article usage] a next or the next

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White Nyan Cat

Member
Polish - Poland
Hello,
And eh, I would say: the nightmare returns, the article as the main star. Soon in your theatres.
This time, I ponder upon this sentence:

If the limit of 10 parcels is not reached, they are transferred to [a/the] next month.
The same goes with e.g. "allowing them to transfer the services included in the pack to the next settlement periods"

Context: it regards a post office, "transferred to" refers to taking the unspent parcels from previous months and including them in the limit of that following month. So, e.g., if the general limit is 10 parcels per month but I send only 5 in January, my February limit will be set on 15 parcels instead of 10 (10+5).

One thing more: that month to whose limit the remaining parcels will be transferred isn't specified. It can be as well any month because the offer is available to the customers all the time.
 
  • srk

    Senior Member
    English - US
    If the limit of 10 parcels is not reached (in any one month), they are transferred to [a/the] next month.
    The "next month" is identified well enough to require the definite article.

    The sentence is not quite right, however. "They," the ten parcels, are not transferred to the next month; the shortfall (5 parcels in your example) is transferred.

    I'd call the ten parcels a (minimum) requirement rather than a limit. "Limit" would be understood as a maximum.
     
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