Questions tagged [politeness]

This tag is for questions regarding the polite use of words or phrases.

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1answer
36 views

What does “if you have anything else to say” mean?

if you have anything else to say What does it mean? Is it offensive or respectful to use it?
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2answers
29 views

Dealing with unknown rude passenger

If in a train or bus some unknown elderly but rude passenger particularly a man, an old man, sitting on a seat which was already reserved by me, how to ask him to get up from there(the seat), Is "...
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9answers
4k views

Is it OK to respond to “thanks” with “sure”?

When someone says ..., thanks. Is it appropriate to respond with sure If so, in which situations it would be OK, and what exactly would it imply?
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4answers
4k views

“Keep my mouth shut”…is it rude to say?

Today I had a lot of fun with a group of mums and kids in a muddy obstacle race. I fell into the muddy pool while my mouth was opened and drank some muddy water by accident. Then I said to the other ...
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2answers
23 views

would: polite request

I'm learning modal verbs, would! I'll try for understanding how can 'would' be used for polite requests by approaching with a methodology. The methodology is that we think 'would' is the past version ...
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1answer
67 views

Is it polite to word requests in a form “can I get X”?

For context, I have recently started a new job, it's a startup in the UK and most employees come from an academic background. I have lived in the UK for 4 years but didn't study here, and English is ...
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1answer
42 views

Alternative words for disturbing in semi-formal register for emails

I asked a few questions and sent a few emails to a customer service and I want to begin with a kind of apologizing to my last email I will send. I do not think it should be too formal or too ...
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2answers
43 views

Formal alternative to 'what are you doing here?'

As far as I know, there is a fixed phrase/idiom for saying what are you doing here? but I have forgotten it. It is a very formal and polite way of saying that. What are you doing here? can sound ...
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3answers
56 views

Asking 'why are you asking this to me?'

Someone asks me a question in very formal conversation. And I want to know why he/she is asking me this question. Basically, I want to know the reason and purpose behind this question. How can I ask ...
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2answers
65 views

What is the attitude when you call someone with title Mr.?

Here is a part of the conversation in a movie I watched: Bosley: Elena? Elena: Hi. Bosley: Welcome. Elena: Uh, Mr. Bosley? Bosley: Just Bosley. Elena: Thank you for seeing me. Two persons are ...
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1answer
52 views

Is this sentence impolite?

I came across this sentence while I reading some questions randomly. The question starts with this sentence: This is a bit of a noob question so bear with me. Obviously, the user wants to excuse ...
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1answer
42 views

an idiom about moving to somewhere

I want to ask someone why on earth he moved from A (a city with high standards of living) to B (a disastrous one), because it's unreasonable and I'm nosy, through a polite idiom. Is there anything for ...
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2answers
8k views

Is “cops” (= police) a slang/derogatory term?

So, I was with a friend getting Starbucks. While talking to him I used the term "cops" 💬. A customer waiting for their coffee said "We don't say 'cops' honey, it's disrespectful."...
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2answers
83 views

Is 'boarding the plane' more formal than 'getting on the plane'?

When I go to an airport, the airport announcement announces 'boarding a plane' than 'getting on a plane'. Because they say in public places all the time, I start to feel 'boarding' is a more formal ...
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1answer
44 views

When calling a company in the united states, how do you start a conversation?

How do you initiate the conversation? Should you use the phrase "How are you?" after or before introducing yourself? I assume it is after you introduce yourself? "Hi, this is ... calling, how are you?...
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0answers
25 views

If I say “Well you have yourself a good bank Holiday” and they reply “Yeah” and don't turn round. Are they rude?

If I say "Well you have yourself a good bank Holiday" and they reply "Yeah" and don't turn round. Are they being rude? A co-worker had their back to me. I said this as a way to say Bye. They ...
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2answers
40 views

Gentle synonym for stupid

How you can express that you felt stupid for a thing you told but without using the term "stupid", like in a nicer manner? For example: She felt "stupid" for the things she told to her friend.
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1answer
38 views

Does referring to a third person by their first name require you to be on a first name basis with that person?

Suppose you are talking to your friend about a third person called Mrs. Firstname Lastname. Suppose you are not on a first name basis with this third person; that is, if you spoke to this third person ...
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1answer
37 views

Is saying “is this (name)'s phone?” rude in business conversation?

Is the following sentence rude in business conversation? Is this (name)'s phone? I want to ask if the speaker is the person who I'm looking for.
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1answer
50 views

Why do people call you a nickname when you introduce yourself with a proper name

As a rule, I always introduce myself using my proper first name, "Thomas". With this I expect people to refer to me and call me by that name. However, there are a significant number of people who go ...
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1answer
31 views

Asking for update

I want to get an update on COVID-19. So can I post in a group like" As a precautionary measure against COVID-19, the state government has declared one week shut down of offices and colleges. It would ...
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1answer
18 views

A request to the boss

When I have something I want to ask my boss, is it appropriate to say it like this? • I have a request to you. Would you please ...? Is there any more appropriate or polite way to say that?
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1answer
55 views

how to ask someone to deposit my money to my bank account

I gave a loan for one of my friends and i need that money back before month end. I want to ask from my friend to deposit loan amount obtained to my bank account
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1answer
33 views

Is “if” with “will” possible in this case?

I would like to know if you will stock this record I would like to know if you stock this record I think the first one sounds better because the record I am talking too is not out yet but I also ...
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0answers
105 views

How to ask for apologies when you have already sent an email by not pressing the reply to all feature?

Three days ago I replied to an email that I was in BCC list by pressing only reply to feature.Now I realized that I haven't pressed the reply to all feature,that I was supposed to do so. Now I ...
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1answer
40 views

Is this expression informal?

My boss asked me the send him some documents, I immediately attached the documents and send him an email with the following body: Dear Thomas, I hope all is well with you. Thank you very much for ...
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4answers
150 views

Should I apologize for addressing a female with Ms + her first name?

I'm not a native English speaker so I wasn't exactly aware of the Mr/Ms + last name rule. I addressed the HR Director of a potential employer with Ms + her first name. My native friend then told me ...
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1answer
1k views

Is “I'll be waiting for your call” polite in a professional setting?

Someone says: "I'll call you later." What is a polite way to say "I'll be by my phone when you call, so that I won't miss it." Some people suggests that "I'll be waiting for your call" sounds a bit ...
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1answer
35 views

I might want you to

Is this No.1 a valid sentence to make a request politely? I might want you to include these items in the agenda. Or is just saying like this a lot better? I would like you to include ...
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7answers
6k views

What is the polite way to tell taxi driver that he can stop here?

My question is I want to primarily give the driver a choice. The secondary consideration is not being rude. I take taxi to home. My home is in a community. I often tell taxi driver "You can stop ...
2
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1answer
78 views

Does the question sound rude? how to ask in English?

How to form a question without sounding rude. If I see someone coughing, should I say: Is it rude to wear a mask? or Is it rude if I wear a mask? And is it rude in the American culture?
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1answer
314 views

How to reply a “Happy New Year” email?

This is the quote from the email I receive after New Year. "I would like to wish you a good 2020. I hope you had a good Christmas and New Year’s eve." What is the best and formal way to reply to ...
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1answer
55 views

How would you ask opinions for differences between two things?

I want to ask politely for an in-depth explanation of how these two apparently similar things A and B are different when closely looked at. Eg: "In which way A and B are different from each other?"
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2answers
180 views

Is the sentence “I want a [insert noun] now” rude?

On two separate incidents, I have been told that the sentence below (without any context) is rude. I want a chocolate now. Question: Is this an absolute interpretation? Where is the argument ...
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2answers
47 views

Is it correct saying “buy something hand-to-hand”?

In trades I really need to know if is correct the use of this idiom. If its ok or not, would you tell me what are the common ways to express when we need to buy or sell some goods when the buyer and ...
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1answer
36 views

Proper way for asking to leave

I am about to take an assesment for responsible service of alcohol licence. There is a video question and I need to tell someone to leave in that video. Once I saw a scene in The Simpsons and there ...
2
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1answer
41 views

How to ask for a sequence of detailed steps guidance clearly and politely?

I asked a question just now. Please give a specific setting path, from which menu command to submenu command. I am worried about if I say it clearly and politely. I meant to express that ...
2
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0answers
100 views

Get well wishes [closed]

My boss had informed that her son was admitted to the ER. I want to email her to find out how he is doing. It should sound professional but not too formal. How should I enquirer?
2
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1answer
66 views

“Dear {Ms, Mr, Mrs,Dr, Prof etc} Psmith,” - what do you call the part in braces?

Dear {Ms, Mr, Mrs, Dr, Prof etc} Psmith, In the example above, how do you name the particle in curly brackets? I'm writing a questionnaire asking, also, how a person would like to be addressed in ...
2
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1answer
6k views

How to say just want to let you know politely

I am not a native speaker, is it not polite if I say” just want to let you know?” I am not sure if I told my friend before so I want to make sure she know where will the lesson take place. Will it be ...
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1answer
96 views

How to politely (and correctly) apologize for not speaking English?

Suppose you are giving a talk and in your audience there is a person who does not speak your mother tongue. Let's call them John. Neither your mother tongue nor John's mother tongue is English. ...
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2answers
64 views

A sort of formal way for saying “that sounds like a new work”

Suppose, you submit your report to a boss and he asks you to add more chapters or sections to the report. However, you don't want to do that because you believe the new content would be too much and ...
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2answers
3k views

“Please, tell me” vs. “Could you tell me”

I am not a native English speaker. Last week, I sent Email to my manager saying "Please, tell me the meeting date". My manager replied: You meant "Can you tell me the meeting date" So, I am not sure ...
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5answers
5k views

Is it alright to say good afternoon Sirs and Madams in a panel interview?

I will be attending a panel interview (with two men and two women). I don't know their names. I want to be more polite, but I am not sure whether it is alright to say Good afternoon, sirs and ...
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1answer
242 views

What to say if someone is blocking your way

If you want to go into a subway entrance, but someone is blocking your way, what should you say?
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2answers
2k views

take so long vs taking so long

I've worked in a market. Suddenly they stopped my work for verification purpose. They requested me to provide a student ID card. I've sent a scanned copy of my Student ID card for verification. One ...
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1answer
83 views

Is “I want you to…” more offensive than “I need you to…”?

I wrote an email to request somebody to do something for me. In the email I said "I want you to ...". Somebody told me that instead, I should say "I need you to..." or "Please help me", so that the ...
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1answer
29 views

Getting to your seat on airplanes (or elsewhere)

On airplanes, there are seats A(window)-B(middle)-C(isle) on one of the sides. Suppose someone is sitting on seat C and I need to get to seat B. What are the most natural ways to ask the person from ...
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11answers
6k views

Is there a polite way to ask about one's ethnicity? [closed]

Suppose I'm talking to a person who is an American citizen but obviously has some "Asian roots" (either they immigrated to the US at early age or their parents were immigrants). Is there a polite way ...
0
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2answers
88 views

How do I complete the sentence “If it's no trouble, ____”?

I'm trying to learn the sentence structure and I had a few thoughts about the possible structural continuations of the sentence. I was wondering if you could introduce any new possible continuations ...

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