Where I Can or Where Can I? Which is correct?

“Where can I” is the correct structure when you are asking a direct question. When asking a direct question you always change the order of the subject and the main verb.

“…..where I can” is also correct if the question is an indirect question. An indirect question has some additional words before  “where I can” and is a way to be more polite in English.


Where can I find the nearest supermarket?

Would it be possible for you to tell me where I can find the nearest supermarket?

Notice that both examples have the same intention but the second example adds extra information. This 

Where Can I?

“Where can I?” is correct when it comes at the beginning of the sentence.


Where can I find some meat for my taco?

Where can I go to the bathroom?

Where can I stay tonight?

Where can I buy some beer?

Where can I find a nice girl?

Where can I work now?

Where can I dance the Tango?

The above examples are in the normal structure of interrogative sentences

Question Word Auxiliary Verb Subject Main Verb Rest of sentence






Where I can?

“Where I can” is correct when it forms part of an indirect sentence.


Do you know where I can buy some tennis shoes? 

Can you tell me where I can find a nice girl?

Do you mind telling me where I can find the bathroom?

Could you tell me where can I fix my phone

Would it be possible to know where can I see a doctor?

Indirect Questions

If a question is open or closed, it is usually a direct question and an interrogative sentence(you use a question mark). An indirect question is when a question is part of a larger sentence. You need to use a question mark only when the sentence starts with a question asking word(do, can, would, etc)

Direct Question Indirect question

What time is it?

Do you know what time it is?

Where is the shopping center?

Can you tell me where the shopping center is?

Who took the money?

I don’t know who took the money.