Use have -en?
Present simple vs Present Perfect

When do people use have -en? Let’s look at some sentences with have -en (present perfect) and the present form (present simple) to better understand the meaning have -en adds and why speakers choose to use it.

Why do we use it?

We add have -en when we are talking about the present, and we want to say what happened before now. There is a result in the present.


We use the present form to talk about things generally.

We use have/has + -en to talk about specific experiences (results we have in the present).

present simple tense timeline - in general - many times

I often go to Africa. (generally: many times)
He doesn’t play baseball. (this generally doesn’t happen)
Do you eat insects? (generally: many times)

present perfect tense timeline - present result - Recent action: happened at a time before now

I‘ve been to Africa. (maybe once)
He hasn’t played baseball. (not yet: he may do it in the future)
Have you eaten insects? (maybe once)

We often talk about what generally happens then more specifically about experiences in the same conversation.

A: Do you ski? (present form)
B: Yes.
A: Have you ever skied in Europe? (have/has + -en form)