I'd like to know how "the 20 to 30 year old age group" is punctuated in standard English. "30-year-old" should be hyphenated. What about "20 to 30"?

Any principles at work?

I'd appreciate your help.

  • There is no single answer to this. I would personally replace 20 to 30 with an en dash, turning this into the 20–30-year-old age group. (Or you could rephrase it altogether: The group of people aged 20 to 30.) – Jason Bassford Jul 15 '19 at 1:41
  • 1
    I would write “the 20- to 30-year-old age group” (but I don’t have an authoritative source for this). – Mitchell Spector Jul 15 '19 at 4:25
  • @MitchellSpector I've noticed you put a space between "20-" and "to" in your version. I'm wondering why no such space exists in "a nine-to-five job." – Apollyon Jul 15 '19 at 5:03
  • Yes, the space was intentional. I’ve always understood “20- to 30-year-old” to be a shortened version of “20-year-old to 30-year-old.” – Mitchell Spector Jul 15 '19 at 5:08
  • “Nine-to-five job” is different. It’s not short for “nine-job to five-job.” – Mitchell Spector Jul 15 '19 at 5:11

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