if looked at from the point of view of sounds, there is no real need for exceptions... even for something like "union" which seems to require an exception, we can look at the word's sound to tell us what is required... taking a transcription (into an aural representation) of the word rather than its spelling, the word "union" may be transcribed in the International Phonetic Alphabet (IPA) as "juniən", and it can be seen, refering to the list above, that it requires an "a' instead of an "an"... doesn't mean everyone should learn IPA, but this is just to illustrate that it is a sound thing and not a spelling thing... use and trust your ear to tell
"an" is correct... You use "an" if the next word starts with a vowel SOUND, not necessarily letter...
So "H" is "ech" in sound, you use "an" in this case...
Ditto with an S-class Mercedes, since you pronouce it as "es" or an F-18 fighter jet coz you say it with "ef"....
how come i checked oxford dictionary (which is an English dictionary)
they say H is pronounced as "etch" ?
Is "Hetch" really correct pronunciation?
Kinda like Zi, Zed, in HK some folks say "izet" hehe... was listening to a travel agent talking to a westerner one time in HK (he was using speakerphone) and he was trying to spell his name (his name is Bonzen), Bee, Oh, En, Izet, Yi, En...
I think the American guy was confused for about 10mins trying to get his name... I just told the guy "say Zi, not izet") hehe.
If you look up any dictionary, whether Collins, Oxford or Webster's, thus covering both the UK and US usage... you will find that the pronunciation key of the letter 'H' is: \ˈāch\ (or similar).
If you pronounce the letter 'H' as 'haitch', then it's quite simply a mistake. It's a very common pronunciation error, so there is no shame it it.
'An' is used before the phonetic equivalent of 'a', 'e', 'i', 'o' and 'u'... and not necessary the letters 'a', 'e', 'i', 'o' and 'u' themselves.
Therefore, 'an HDB' is correct.
Don't get started on Irish-English, Scottish-English, Indian-English, Singlish or any other pronunciation. You can choose to use the language in any way you please. I use Singlish all the time and completely ignore the rules... but that does not mean that it is the correct use of English.
At skool eye waz tort "H" waz spelled "aitch"
Time, is an effortless construction :)
Assuming most of us have figured this out, so here's a pop quiz ...
'A' mp3 player or 'an' mp3 player?