Grammar 5 min read

What is Correct? Alot or A lot? And, What About Allot?

Is it alot or a lot or allot? All you need to do is allot a little time and a lot of brainpower, and we’ll take care of the rest. See what I did there?

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Main Takeaways:

  • A lot and allot are words.
  • Alot is not a word (unless you’re talking about a town in India).
  • A lot refers to a large quantity of a given item.
  • Allot means to assign a portion of something to a person or set aside a share.

The alot or a lot or allot debate may be one of the most confusing issues in grammar. This is likely due to the fact that alot appears so often in texts, emails, and other content. Even so, it’s just a mistake or a misuse of a lot.

It’s time to buck the trend. Find out when you should be using a lot vs. alot. Hint: There’s one choice that’s wrong 99.99% of the time.

Is it a lot, alot, or allot? Two of these words are correct, one is not. Can you guess the misspelled word?
Is it a lot, alot, or allot? Two of these words are correct, one is not. Can you guess the misspelled word?

Is it Alot or A lot or Allot?

Two of those options are appropriate to use, depending on the situation. One is not. Do you know which is which? Is alot a word?

Is Alot Correct?

No. “Alot” is not a word. While you may see alot used by other writers here and there, it’s actually a mistake. Alot is a common misspelling of a lot—the first word has no space, while the second does. That’s the only difference. Think about a lot or alot in terms of articles and nouns. In the same way alittle or abunch doesn’t make sense, combining a and lot into alot isn’t logical, either.

Bottom line: When it comes to using alot or a lot, only one is correct. A lot for the win!

What Does a Lot Mean?

When thinking about alot or a lot, think about amounts. A lot is used to quantify an item. It means many or a great deal of something and can be used as an adverb or a pronoun.

He bought a lot of cilantro at the store for Taco Tuesday.
It’s the rainy season, so we’ve been staying indoors a lot.
There are a lot of frogs in this world and not so many princes.
Librarians work around a lot of books.
“Alot” is a common misspelling of the phrase “a lot.”

Define Allot: What Does Allot Mean?

Add an “l” to alot, and you get allot. It’s just one little letter, but that addition creates an entirely new meaning. Allot is a verb that means to give someone a share of an item or set aside part of a task.

I have to allot some time for homework before I send the kids to bed.
He decided to allot a piece of the farm for use as grazing land.
Mary had two containers of ice cream left, one of which she allotted for sundaes.
Since I’m the one who forgot to lock the door, I allot some of the blame for the break-in to myself.

Examples of a Lot in Action

Use a lot whenever you want your reader to understand that you’re referring to a large quantity of something. That something could be a tangible object, like fish. It could also be something intangible, like time.

It takes a lot of time to learn Japanese.
I love lime, so I squeeze a lot of it into my water.
A lot of people are afraid of snakes.
In October, a lot of people like to carve pumpkins and pick out scary costumes.

Examples of Allot in Action

Use allot whenever you’re assigning part of a task or object to a specific person or group.

To keep things fair, I’ll allot one piece of chocolate to each of you.
You need to allot a few days for relaxation, so you don’t get burned out.
Amusement parks can be expensive, so I’ll allot each family member $20 to spend however they wish.
“Allot” means to give or assign a portion of something to someone.

Examples of Alot in Action

Since alot is essentially a grammatical error, there are very few ways to use it properly.

Never, ever use alot in a sentence unless you’re discussing how it’s not even a real word.

The only other exception is if you’re referring to a town in the Ratlam District of India.

Alot is a relatively small town with a population of just under 41,000.

Perhaps the easiest way to learn how to decide between a lot or alot or allot is as follows:

  • A lot is the opposite of a little. Both have spaces, and both refer to quantities.
  • Allot takes all of something and divides into portions or shares.
  • An Alot is a big scary monster you never want to encounter. Go away, Alot!

This may be a lot to process. But once you get it, you won’t have to allot a lot of time correcting your spelling error because you now know alot is wrong.

Read More: Bear With Me or Bare With Me?

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