Difference Wiki

Request vs. Enquiry: What's the Difference?

Edited by Harlon Moss || By Janet White || Published on January 17, 2024
A request is a plea or appeal for something, while an enquiry is a question or investigation for information.

Key Differences

A request is often a direct appeal or petition for something to be given or done. An enquiry, in contrast, is a quest for information, clarification, or understanding.
Requests imply a desire or need for a specific action or item, often requiring a response or action. Enquiries, however, are centered around gaining knowledge or insights, without necessarily expecting a direct action in response.
In communication, a request is typically more imperative, seeking compliance or assistance. An enquiry is more explorative, aiming to uncover facts or opinions without the assumption of immediate action.
The tone of a request can range from formal to casual, depending on the context and relationship between the parties. Enquiries, however, are generally more neutral, focusing on the information sought rather than the relationship dynamics.
Requests are often used in scenarios where a specific outcome is desired, such as in service situations or when asking for help. Enquiries are more common in educational, research, or conversational contexts, where the primary goal is to gather information or understand a situation better.

Comparison Chart


A plea or appeal for something.
A question or investigation for information.

Primary Purpose

To obtain assistance, action, or a specific item.
To gather information or clarification.

Expected Response

Action, compliance, or provision of requested item.
Information, explanation, or insights.


Can vary from formal to casual.
Generally neutral and information-focused.

Context of Use

Service situations, assistance requests, formal petitions.
Educational, research, conversational inquiries.

Request and Enquiry Definitions


A request signifies the desire or need for assistance.
The team put in a request for technical support.


An enquiry is a question asked for information.
He made an enquiry about the status of his application.


Requests are often expressed in inquiries or petitions.
The customer made a request for a refund.


An enquiry can be an investigation or examination.
The police conducted an enquiry into the incident.


A request can be a formal application or submission.
He filed a request for leave next month.


An enquiry refers to a formal request for information.
She sent an enquiry to the university regarding admission procedures.


A request is a call for a specific action or response.
The manager’s request for timely submissions was clear.


Enquiries are the act of asking detailed questions.
Their enquiry into customer satisfaction revealed interesting trends.


A request is an act of politely or formally asking for something.
She sent a request for additional resources to complete the project.


An enquiry signifies curiosity or a need for clarification.
His enquiry about the project’s progress was timely.


To express a desire for, especially politely; ask for. Often used with an infinitive or clause
Requested information about the experiment.
Requested to see the evidence firsthand.
Requested that the bus driver stop at the next corner.


Variant of inquiry.


A question.


Search for truth, information or knowledge.
Scientific enquiry


See Inquiry.


An instance of questioning;
There was a question about my training
We made inquiries of all those who were present


A search for knowledge;
Their pottery deserves more research than it has received


A systematic investigation of a matter of public interest


Can requests be informal?

Yes, requests can be both formal and informal.

Can a request be denied?

Yes, requests can be accepted or denied based on circumstances.

How does an enquiry differ from a question?

An enquiry is often more formal and detailed than a general question.

Are requests always verbal?

No, requests can be made in writing or verbally.

How should a request be made in a professional setting?

Professionally, requests should be clear, polite, and to the point.

What is an enquiry?

An enquiry is a question or investigation for information.

What is a request?

A request is a plea or appeal for something to be given or done.

Are enquiries always answered?

Not always; it depends on the nature and context of the enquiry.

How do cultural differences affect requests?

Cultural norms can influence how requests are made and perceived.

What role do requests play in customer service?

Requests are central in customer service for addressing client needs.

Can enquiries be made anonymously?

Yes, some enquiries can be made anonymously.

How do businesses handle customer enquiries?

Businesses often have dedicated channels to handle customer enquiries.

Can enquiries lead to further investigation?

Yes, enquiries can sometimes lead to more in-depth investigations.

Can a request be urgent?

Yes, some requests may be urgent and require immediate attention.

Why are enquiries important in research?

Enquiries help gather essential data and insights in research.

Can technology facilitate enquiries?

Yes, technology can make it easier to make and respond to enquiries.

Can a request be made on behalf of someone else?

Yes, requests can be made on behalf of others.

Can an enquiry be about something personal?

Yes, enquiries can be about personal or general matters.

Are there legal aspects to certain enquiries?

Yes, some enquiries, like those in law enforcement, have legal implications.

What is an example of a formal request?

A job application or a request for a meeting.
About Author
Written by
Janet White
Janet White has been an esteemed writer and blogger for Difference Wiki. Holding a Master's degree in Science and Medical Journalism from the prestigious Boston University, she has consistently demonstrated her expertise and passion for her field. When she's not immersed in her work, Janet relishes her time exercising, delving into a good book, and cherishing moments with friends and family.
Edited by
Harlon Moss
Harlon is a seasoned quality moderator and accomplished content writer for Difference Wiki. An alumnus of the prestigious University of California, he earned his degree in Computer Science. Leveraging his academic background, Harlon brings a meticulous and informed perspective to his work, ensuring content accuracy and excellence.

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