Using "zai" with verbs
If you want to describe the place where you are doing, or have done something, you can use 在 (zài).
To indicate the location that a verb takes place in, 在 (zài) is used.
Subj. + 在 + Location + Verb + Obj.
Notice that the location is placed before the verb in Chinese, whereas, in English, it appears afterwards. Also, you often need a "里 (lǐ)" with "在 (zài)" after a thing to indicate the location.
- 我 在 上海 上大学。I went to college in Shanghai.
- 你 一直 在 这 家 公司 工作 吗？Have you always been working in this company?
- 我 周末 想 在 家 睡觉。During the weekend, I want to sleep at home.
- 不 要 在 床 上 吃 东西。need a "上" with "在" to indicate the location " on the bed". Don't eat food on the bed.
- 你 想 在 哪儿 开 生日 派对？Where do you want have the birthday party?
- 他 喜欢 在 厕所 里 抽烟。need a "里" with "在" to indicate the location " in the bathroom". He likes to smoke in the bathroom.
- 很 多 人 在 地铁 上 吃 早饭。need a "上" with "在" to indicate the location " in the subway". Many people eat breakfast on the subway.
- 现在 我们 在 KTV 唱歌。Now we're at KTV singing songs.
- 老板 在 会议室 见 客户。The boss is seeing the client in the meeting room.
- 你 在 外面 吃 过 晚饭 了 吗？Did you eat dinner outside?
Notice that in English we usually put the location at the end of a sentence. This is different in Chinese, as we put the location after the subject, but before the verb.