‘Should’ and ‘ought to’ We can use 'ought to' or 'should' in three main ways. We can use them to express the view that something is the right thing to do; it’s your duty: 'You ought to go to the party. You said you would.' 'They ought to stop building new roads through this rainforest.' 'All staff should be ready for work by 8:00am.' 'Kids should not be allowed to swim in the pool.' We also use 'ought to' or 'should' to say that something is expected: 'They left over an hour ago, they should be here soon.' 'I sent away for a new credit card. It ought to be here today.' 'The weather ought to be nice at this time of year.' And finally, we use 'ought to' or 'should' to give or ask for advice: 'If you haven’t been to the Melbourne zoo, then you ought to, it’s amazing.' 'You should be careful when you walk next to the river.' So what's the difference? Most English speakers would use 'should' in most of these situations. It's more informal and so more common in.