2-min English 兩分鐘英語 

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Hi there! I am Tim, from Wall Street English.

 

Today we are going to look at a few ways to make polite requests and ask for permission.

In order to make simple requests, we must learn how to ask questions using can, could and may.  For even more formal occasions we may use other formal expressions.

 

If you are talking to your boss, teacher, senior, or even someone you don’t know very well you should use ‘May’.

May I take a day off on the following Monday?”

OR more formally;

Would it be possible for me to take a day off on the following Monday?”

Would it be possible to is an expression to be more indirect for polite requests.

 

If you are talking to a colleague or a friend in general, you should use ‘Could’ as it is more formal than using ‘Can’.

Could you please give me a hand?”

OR more formally;

Would you mind giving me a hand?”

We often use idiomatic expressions together with these polite expressions. Just like in this example. To give someone a hand simply means help.

 

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If you are talking to your close friend, your best friend or your family, you can simply use ‘Can’.

Can you help me with the laundry?”

OR

Can I invite Jessica to the party?”

Using Can is more direct, but if you are very close we may not even make a request. We may just directly say what we want done.

Help me with the laundry!”

OR

Give me a hand!”

 

That’s all for this episode of 2-minute English. I hope you’d learned lots about making requests, and of course, have a great day.