difference between \"go for\" and \"go with\" when both mean \"choose\"

English translation: "go with" = "accept" and "go for" = "decide/opt"

22:57 Nov 27, 2018
English to English translations [PRO]
Linguistics
English term or phrase: difference between \"go for\" and \"go with\" when both mean \"choose\"
I would like to get a better understanding of and feeling for these two phrasal verbs when they mean "choose".

I've used both for years without giving it a second thought. Now as a translator and copyeditor, I'm becoming more conscious of such things, and I find myself having to a) defend my choice of words and b) consult others on linguistic issues such as this one.

Are there any shades of meaning or usage considerations that make them different? Different situations where you would use one but no the other?

(I'm aware of the multiple other definitions and meanings of each phrasal verb. I'm only interested in comparing and contrasting "go with" and "go for" in this specific meaning, "choose".)

Thank you for your detailed explanations!

P. S. I request explicitly that this be kept as a PRO question. I am not a novice learner of English nor am I looking for basic help here. Thank you.
Mikhail Kropotov
Russian Federation
Local time: 23:09
English translation:"go with" = "accept" and "go for" = "decide/opt"
Explanation:
the difference is pretty subtle

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Note added at 57 mins (2018-11-27 23:54:43 GMT)
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depends on the context too as very often either option would be ok but if you really have to differentiate, "go with" implies "accept/agree with" e.g. "I'll go with your proposal as I accept it" while "go for" could also include a measure of doubt e.g. If I have to decide between two different options, "I'll go for" means I'll pick the one I prefer

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Note added at 3 hrs (2018-11-28 02:11:50 GMT)
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ok and "go with" here would be "I'll pick"

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Note added at 3 hrs (2018-11-28 02:13:41 GMT)
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it's a toughie for sure so you "pick"

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Note added at 3 hrs (2018-11-28 02:14:19 GMT)
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your English beats my Russian :)
Selected response from:

David Hollywood
Local time: 17:09
Grading comment
4 KudoZ points were awarded for this answer



Summary of answers provided
4 +9"go with" = "accept" and "go for" = "decide/opt"
David Hollywood
4Go for and Go with
coldspring (X)


Discussion entries: 15





  

Answers


51 mins   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5 peer agreement (net): +9
"go with" = "accept" and "go for" = "decide/opt"


Explanation:
the difference is pretty subtle

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 57 mins (2018-11-27 23:54:43 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

depends on the context too as very often either option would be ok but if you really have to differentiate, "go with" implies "accept/agree with" e.g. "I'll go with your proposal as I accept it" while "go for" could also include a measure of doubt e.g. If I have to decide between two different options, "I'll go for" means I'll pick the one I prefer

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 3 hrs (2018-11-28 02:11:50 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

ok and "go with" here would be "I'll pick"

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 3 hrs (2018-11-28 02:13:41 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

it's a toughie for sure so you "pick"

--------------------------------------------------
Note added at 3 hrs (2018-11-28 02:14:19 GMT)
--------------------------------------------------

your English beats my Russian :)

David Hollywood
Local time: 17:09
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
PRO pts in category: 51
Notes to answerer
Asker: This is not the usage of "go with" that I was referring to. I'm talking about saying things "If I have to choose between a bowl of chicken soup and a Big Mac, I'll go with the Big Mac."

Asker: "saying things like*". Sorry for my sloppy writing tonight. It's been a long day!

Asker: Yes, I know it means "pick" in my example -- that's why I provided it. Suppose we exchange "go with" for "go for". "If I have to choose between a bowl of chicken soup and a Big Mac, I'll go for the Big Mac." Does this change anything at all?


Peer comments on this answer (and responses from the answerer)
agree  writeaway
3 mins
  -> thanks writeaway

agree  Tina Vonhof
13 mins
  -> thanks Tina

agree  Jack Doughty
6 hrs
  -> thanks Jack

agree  Charles Davis: I think this is basically right (for American English)
10 hrs
  -> thanks Charles

agree  Sarah Lewis-Morgan
11 hrs
  -> thanks Sarah

agree  Yvonne Gallagher: "go with": Yes, possibly a nuance of "agree with" but not sure about "accept".
11 hrs
  -> thanks Yvonne

agree  B D Finch: I think it's right for EN-UK too. "To go with" is more passive, (e.g. acceptance of a proposal), while "to go for" is more active.
12 hrs
  -> thanks B.D.

agree  Thayenga: :)
13 hrs
  -> thanks Thayenga

agree  katsy: agree with BD and others: go for = I choose; go with implies acceptance of a proposal which one has not initiated (cf. to go along with the American proposal)
4 days
  -> thanks katsy
Login to enter a peer comment (or grade)

2 days 14 hrs   confidence: Answerer confidence 4/5Answerer confidence 4/5
Go for and Go with


Explanation:
A simple way to differentiate the two, differences between UK and American English notwithstanding, is that "go for" is a more active expression, and "go with" is a passive expression. They can broadly end up meaning the same thing, but each provides some descriptive context for the person performing the action.

coldspring (X)
United States
Local time: 15:09
Specializes in field
Native speaker of: Native in EnglishEnglish
Notes to answerer
Asker: Thank you very much for confirming this.

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