My friend asked me today: "What fruit would you like to eat?" and I pondered which phrase will be correct in such situation. "I don't think I want a fruit now, but thank you for the suggestion / invitation". Is these words (suggestion / invitation) are correct in this context?


As your friend's question implies they will give you a piece of fruit, "suggestion" does not fit very well. "Suggestion" would be appropriate if your friend gave you advice on a course of action, but not if they are offering you something tangible. On the other hand, "invitation" suggests something more than a piece of fruit - if your friend offered to buy you a meal, it would be more appropriate.

As a native BE speaker I would almost certainly respond with something including "Thank you for the offer" or "for offering".

  • 1
    As a native American English speaker, I would also respond the same way. – CrescentSickle Apr 26 '19 at 20:01

Of the two, I would favor "invitation", as that seems more of something to thank another person for. However, in ordinary informal conversation, I would be far more likely to say something like

Thanks, but I don't think I want a fruit now.


Not just now, but thanks anyway.


Thanks, not just now.

The last of these is more perfunctory, and in my view therefore less polite. I would use it with family or a good friend, but not an acquaintance I was trying to make an impression on, nor a date (if I were still dating).

I don't think I want a fruit now, but thank you for the invitation.

seems over elaborate. For the matter of that, i would be far more likely to phrase the question more simply as:

Would you like a fruit?

with a gesture to a fruit bowl or display, if one was in sight.

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