Lets vs Let’s


Lets vs. let’s is one of those grammar rules that seems to trip quite a few people up! So when do you use one over the other? Let’s find out!

Let’s is the contracted form of saying “Let us.” Some people refer to this as the exhortative Let as you’re exhorting people to do something. “Let’s go to the zoo,” “Let’s start reading,” and “Let’s eat marshmallow infused fried chicken” are all examples where the speaker is essentially saying “Let us do something together.”

Lets, on the other hand, is the present tense form of the verb let, meaning to permit or allow. Here are some examples:

  • Mom gets upset when Sammy lets the dog inside without cleaning the dog’s paws.
  • Sometimes, my big sister lets me play on her laptop.

Easy, right? If you’re ever confused, just uncontract “Let’s” to “Let us” and see if the sentence still makes sense:

  • Mom gets upset when Sammy [let us] the dog inside without cleaning the dog’s paws. (Nope!)
  • [Let us] go to the zoo. (Yep!)


Nathan Caldwell is the owner and founder of the Young Writers Society and its group blog, Writing Gooder.

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