Hi there! I am LJ, from Wall Street English. Today, I’m going to talk about what we can say when we are late.
Being late is considered rude and impolite in English-speaking countries.
When we know that we will be late, we should tell the person or people waiting for us that we are going to be late.
If you know you are going to be late before the planned event starts, you can say…
“I’m afraid that I won’t be able to make it on time.”
“I’m sorry, but I’m running late.”
We can make the phrase “I’m sorry” stronger and more sincere by adding “so” or “really”.
“I’m really sorry.”
“I’m so sorry.”
After apologizing, we should explain why we are late.
“I’m sorry, but I won’t be able to make it on time. Something has come up.”
Here are some possible reasons for being late.
- I’m stuck in traffic.
- I have a family emergency.
- My bus is delayed.
- The meeting is running overtime.
If you know you are going to be late and you want to tell the person waiting for you when you expect to arrive. You can say…
“I’m going to be about 10 minutes late.”
“I’m on my way. I’ll be there in 30 minutes.”
When you arrive, you can say
“Thank you for waiting”.
“I’m sorry to keep you waiting.”
However, if you have apologized that you’re going to be late, please do not show up with a warm cup of coffee in your hand. That’s very rude.
And, you might have encountered this situation. You thought you would be on time, but you are a few minutes late in the end. When you arrive, you can say…
“I’m sorry for being late.”
Last but not least, let’s try our best to be punctual.
That’s all for today. See you next time!