Little Book of Confusables

Licence vs license: top spelling tricks to help you get it right

LICENCE vs LICENSE: simple tips to remember the difference

LICENCE and LICENSE are easy to confuse. The fact that both words sound the same trips people up time and time again.

Here are my simple tips to remember the difference between LICENCE and LICENSE*

When to use LICENCE

LICENCE is a noun.

You need a licenCe to drive a Car.

Also, remember that a licenCE is printed on paper, like a CErtificate.

When to use LICENSE

LICENSE is a verb that means to give permiSSion.

Remember the S in licenSe and permiSSion.

*Important note – in the US, both the verb and the noun are spelled LICENSE.


If you know the trick for PRACTICE vs PRACTISE – remembering that ICE is a noun – you can apply the same C vs S spelling rule here.

You can also apply this spelling tip to other similar pairs, such as ADVICE and ADVISE or DEVICE and DEVISE.

Just remember, the suffix ICE means the word is a noun.

Get more tips in The Little Book of Confusables

Confusables: LICENCE vs LICENSE. Simple spelling tips to remember the difference, from The Little Book of Confusables

LICENCE vs LICENSE. Excerpt from The Little Book of Confusables by Sarah Townsend.

The Little Book of Confusables by Sarah Townsend

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