Everything goes according to plan

Discussion in 'English Only' started by yelppuppy, Apr 30, 2008.

  1. yelppuppy New Member

    California, USA
    Chinese - Mandarin
    Is it "according to plan" or "according to the plan"?

    An example is:

    If everything goes according to plan, the India division will be on the new schedule next quarter.

    I googled and 'according to plan' pops up the most, but I'm not sure why "the" is omitted.
  2. johnp

    johnp Senior Member

    Either is correct; the sentence with "the" just refers more specifically to the plan.
  3. bibliolept

    bibliolept Senior Member

    Northern California
    AE, Español
    "According to plan" would be idiomatic in that sentence. "According to the plan" would also be acceptable. Another phrase is "if everything goes as planned."

    Some people will just say, though this is less formal, "if everything/all goes to plan."
  4. Cathy Rose Senior Member

    Northeast USA
    United States English
    It's a stock phrase often used in journalism. One of the grammarians can probably answer why the is omitted.
  5. Esca

    Esca Senior Member

    USA - English
    "If all goes according to the plan" refers to one specific plan that is in place.

    "If all goes according to plan" does not refer to any specific plan. It just means "If everything goes the way it has been planned/expected."

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