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bú liào
conj. unexpectedly, without warning
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不料 vs 没想到:

1. 不料 is a conjunction that is used at the beginning of the 2nd clause of a sentence to indicate transition. It usually appears with 却, 竟, 还 or 倒. We cannot add a subject before 不料.
E.g. 本来周末想出去爬山,不料竟下雨了。 r/s [phr] I planned to go mountain climbing on the weekend, but it rained unexpectedly.

2. 没想到 is a phrase. Subjects are optional and can appear before 没想到. Note that in this sentence below, we cannot use 不料.
我完全没想到他竟然是这样的人。I have absolutely never expected that he would be such a person.

3. 不料 and 没想到 are interchangeable in many cases, but the difference is that 没想到 makes the sentence sound more informal. Both sentences are correct but the second one sounds more casual:
- 本来周末想出去爬山,不料竟下雨了。
- 本来周末想出去爬山,没想到竟下雨了。
不料 VS 没想到?
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Is 不料 (bùliào) used more in formal or informal contexts?
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