For a moment Vs For a minute Vs For a while

Rio satria

Member
indonesian
It is trivial question and I am going to ask the difference of "for a moment"," for a minute", and "for a while". Is there any difference among them or they are the same because a lot of people around me sometimes say "wait for a minute" and others say "wait for a moment" and "wait for a while". Thank you
 
  • PaulQ

    Banned
    UK
    English - England
    Welcome to WRF Rio satria,
    Is there any difference among them or they are the same because a lot of people around me sometimes say "wait for a minute" and others say "wait for a moment" and "wait for a while".
    Your examples are all indefinite time phrases and should not be understood literally. There is no difference between them: they are interchangeable, although "for a while" tends to be used to indicate a longer delay.

    All can be understood as "There will be a delay before I do what you are asking me to do."

    (As a piece of trivia, a 'moment' is an obsolete measurement of time and was equivalent to approximately 90 seconds.)
     
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    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    [...]

    (As a piece of trivia, a 'moment' is an obsolete measurement of time and was equivalent to approximately 90 seconds.)
    I had no idea.

    I agree with Paul and here are examples of a busy person asking another to be patient for a short time:

    One moment please; I'll be right with you. (very short duration)

    I'll be with you in a minute. (very short duration)

    I'll be with you in a short while. (fairly short duration)

    I'll be with you in a while.
    (duration of indefinite length)
     
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    kifbender

    Senior Member
    English, USA
    One moment please; I'll be right with you. (very short duration)

    I'll be with you in a minute. (very short duration)

    I'll be with you in a short while. (fairly short duration)

    I'll be with you in a while. (duration of indefinite length)
    I would just add that you can also say "one second" or more colloquially "one sec" which would be a very short duration as well, although frequently not exactly equal to one second.
     

    Packard

    Senior Member
    USA, English
    I would just add that you can also say "one second" or more colloquially "one sec" which would be a very short duration as well, although frequently not exactly equal to one second.

    I often hear, "just a sec" and that is a very short wait (or the intention of being a very short wait).
     
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