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Useful Phrase for Work and Daily Life

Useful Phrase for Work and Daily Life

Last update 

Useful English Phrases for Speaking

Items (241)

  • keep going


  • drop by

    visit for a short time

  • can I put you on hold?

    please wait

  • in charge of

    responsible for, supervisor of

  • running short of time

    getting close to a deadline

  • get a move on

    go faster

  • how can I help you?

    (when answer telephone)

  • in an hour

    one hour after now

  • ahead of/on/behind schedule

    faster/as/slower (than) planned

  • tied up

    busy doing something that you can't stop

  • when is a good time?

    when is a convenient time for you?

  • held up


  • move something out of the way

    (when something blocks)

  • upside down/ right side down

    (for package)

  • no wonder

    now I understand why

  • on me

    (say it when want to pay)

  • stuck in traffic

    in a traffic jam

  • it slipped my mind

    I forgot

  • under a lot of pressure

    feeling stress

  • drop something off

    leave something to a place

  • get through

    make contact with someone by phone

  • put up with something

    accept something bad

  • right away

    immediately; now

  • x caused y

    x made y happen

  • it's not the end of the world

    the situation is not bad

  • in the same boat

    in the same bad situation

  • I'm not following you

    (when don't understand an explanation)

  • get cut off

    lose the connection (phone)

  • have change

    have smaller units of money

  • the second to last

    before the last thing

  • come in

    is available in

  • make up my mind


  • discuss something

    talk about something

  • oversleep

    wake up later than planned

  • about to do something

    going to do something very soon

  • on my way

    going to a place

  • get sidetracked

    become distracted

  • gone for the day

    not come back that day

  • in the (…) business

    the industry someone works in

  • that's it

    nothing more

  • it's about time

    it's overdue but it's finally happening

  • get it

    answer the phone

  • pick something up

    collect something

  • take time off

    decide not to go to work for a short time

  • on top of that

    in addition to; also

  • put clothes on

    (similar) wear

  • I didn't mean that

    (when someone doesn't understand)

  • do you mind if I join you?

    (ask for permission)

  • chip in

    contribute money

  • drop someone off

    take to a place and leave them there

  • end up doing something

    finally do something

  • you shouldn't have

    (when receiving a gift)

  • take turns doing something


  • remind someone to

    help someone remember

  • so far, so good

    every thing is fine now

  • that sounds

    seem to be (when hearing)

  • be not allowed to do

    is not permitted

  • despite something

    not affected by something

  • as a result

    consequently, as an effect

  • in good condition

    not broken / like new

  • just stepped out

    went out for a short time

  • I'll put you through

    I will connect you

  • there's been a delay

    (when something is late)

  • for good

    for ever, permanently

  • hear from someone

    receive communication from someone

  • that's too bad

    (when hear the bad news)

  • what's this charge for?

    (when don't understand amount on bill)

  • to someone / something

    (when drink together)

  • I heard it through the grapevine

    someone told me something as a rumor

  • hear back from someone

    receive a reply from someone

  • better off doing something

    (to show a better choice)

  • are we still on for today?

    (to confirm an arrangement)

  • go ahead

    do it

  • in a good/bad mood

    feeling happy/unhappy

  • run into someone

    meet someone unexpectedly

  • I can't get something to work

    I can't make something function

  • take it apart / put it back together

    dismantle it / assemble it

  • this is Jenny

    ( identify yourself on the phone)

  • by 9 o'clock

    at or before 9:00

  • I don't see eye to eye

    (polite way to say don't agree)

  • it's worth

    real value is

  • what if

    what will happen if

  • let me go / made me run

    allowed me to go / force me to run

  • look up

    find in dictionary, internet

  • get rid of something

    make something go away

  • must have done something

    (when sure about something happened in the past)

  • Could you tell me where something is

    NOT where is something

  • don’t mention it

    (when someone thanks you)

  • Would you mind doing something

    NOT to do something

  • sold out

    all sold so that there is no more

  • half-way through

    (when finish 50% of something)

  • how much longer

    how much more time

  • take the highway

    go on the highway

  • where is something held?

    (to learn the location of an event)

  • it doesn't matter

    it is not important

  • Is this seat taken?

    (ask before sitting beside a stranger)

  • play it by ear

    do it without a plan

  • in those days/today


  • I didn't get your name

    (when ask again someone's name)

  • it's on the tip of my tongue

    I can almost remember it

  • give someone a ride

    drive someone to a place

  • have trouble with something

    (when something is a problem)

  • by far

    (to show that something is very different)

  • I'm positive

    I'm 100% sure

  • I can't figure out how to

    (when can't understand)

  • something works / doesn't work

    something functions / doesn't function

  • suggest that he / you / we

    NOT suggest him to

  • come off

    become detached

  • a fortune

    a lot of money

  • at the most

    not more than

  • in the short / long term

    temporarily / over a long period of time

  • think it over

    take time to think before deciding

  • get something in writing

    have a signed agreement or contract

  • come with

    be served with something

  • instead of something

    to replace something

  • give someone a hand

    help someone

  • adj + enough / enough + noun

    NOT enough tall

  • bring some up

    start talking about something

  • fine with me

    I accept the suggestion

  • a table for three

    (in restaurant)

  • ready to order

    (when want to order your meal)

  • split the check

    each person pay the same amount

  • the other day

    a few day ago

  • there is something left

    something is remaining

  • run out of something

    use something until it is finished

  • I haven't seen you for years

    last time I saw you was many years ago

  • I'd better get doing

    say this when you need to leave

  • keep in touch

    continue to have contact

  • send my regards to someone

    (when want to give the greeting to another person)

  • call someone back

    phone someone who tried phoning you earlier

  • go through something

    search or examine something carefully

  • returning someone call

    phone someone who tried phoning you earlier

  • on the right track

    doing the right thing

  • almost all something

    90% of something

  • for the next four days

    starting now and continuing for four days

  • at three o'clock sharp

    at exactly 3 o'clock

  • how did something go?

    (ask to learn if something was successful)

  • hang up

    (end the phone call)

  • eight feet long/wide/high

    NOT long eight feet

  • move on

    begin a new topic

  • wrap up

    finish a meeting

  • there is no point

    there is no reason

  • can I make a suggestion?

    (before suggesting something)

  • do something in five days

    it take five days to complete something

  • for the time being

    at this time only; not forever

  • I see your point

    I understand your opinion or feelings

  • it's not worth it

    require too much effort for a small result

  • can afford / can't afford

    have enough money / don't have enough money

  • the same as

    NOT same like

  • any minute now

    very soon

  • pull string

    use personal contacts to get something

  • lend someone something

    give someone for a short time

  • within the hour

    less than an hour

  • go over something

    check the details

  • How's something coming along

    tell about the progress

  • What's something for?

    What is the purpose of something

  • watch out

    be careful of something that can be dangerous

  • Can I have a word with you?

    Can I speak to you for a short time?

  • in a row

    one thing directly after another thing

  • pick someone up

    stop to get someone

  • in luck / out of luck

    lucky / unlucky

  • last three hours

    continue for three hours

  • get something done

    finish something

  • take longer than someone expected

    need more time originally planned

  • have sense of humor

    enjoy funny thing, enjoy laughing

  • last 20 years

    can be used for 20 years

  • I'm sorry to hear …

    (say to show you care)

  • Would you prefer A or B?

    Do you want A or B?

  • from now on

    starting now and continuing forever

  • there's nothing I can do (about it)

    (say when you cannot help someone)

  • I'd better let you go

    (say this to end a phone call politely)

  • look into something

    investigate, research

  • reach someone

    contact someone by phone, mail, fax, ect…

  • get by

    manage but with difficult

  • How long does it take to get to…

    How much time is need to arrive at a place

  • Would it be possible for me to

    A polite request

  • find out

    get a piece of information

  • How long have you been in this place?

    (ask to know the amount of time)

  • away on business

    in another city or country on a business trip

  • should have done something

    (say when you made a mistake)

  • someone is back

    someone has return from somewhere

  • short by

    (say this when you don’t have enough)

  • Have you been waiting long?

    (polite question to ask someone waiting for you)

  • Will that be all?

    (in restaurant) Is that the only thing you want?

  • get back to someone

    contact someone as a reply by phone, email, fax…

  • as far as I know

    based on the information I have

  • How was something?

    Ex: How was your vacation?

  • show someone around

    take someone for a tour

  • stand for


  • make yourself / yourselves at home

    please feel relax and comfortable

  • helf yourself / yourselves

    serve your own food or drink

  • short notice

    without much advance warning

  • come up with something

    produce an idea or solution

  • hand-on experience

    experience when learn by doing something

  • once every four years

    NOT four years once

  • I don't know offhand

    I don’t have the information in my memory

  • have something done

    have someone else does it

  • move something up

    change a plan to an earlier time

  • the week after next

    the week after next week

  • get on/off

    for buses, trains and planes

  • get in/out

    for cars and taxis

  • take a chance

    do something that might result in danger

  • on second thought

    when change your decision

  • on average

    about, around

  • do well

    be financially successful

  • the bottom line is

    the main idea is

  • Could you go over that again?

    Ask this if need someone to repeat

  • heard of something / someone

    know that something / someone exists

  • on leave

    having planned absence from work

  • bring someone up to date

    tell someone the most recent information

  • how to get to a place?

    (ask for direction)

  • even if it rains

    NOT even it rains

  • a no-win situation

    a situation that can have only bad results

  • have 4 days off

    have non-working time

  • get together with someone

    meet someone socially

  • as for something (Ex: as for the hotel..)

    say this to introduce a topic

  • What’s someone / something like?

    tell me about someone or something

  • short for something

    a shorter way to say a word

  • know how

    have the skill or knowledge

  • say that / say to

    NOT you said me / NOT I said him

  • let someone go

    take away someone's job

  • it comes to $21

    say this before the total amount

  • give me five minute

    say this when you need someone to wait

  • in case something happens

    because something might happens

  • it's up to someone

    someone decides

  • during the movie

    NOT during we watch the movie

  • What's taking so long?

    Why is something taking a long time?

  • sleep in

    wake up later than usual - by choice

  • speaking of something

    say this when words make you think of a new topic

  • How are you getting somewhere?

    (to find out if someone is going to take a plan, train….)

  • Could I ask you a favor?

    (ask before requesting someone's help)

  • How would you like to pay?

    pay by cash, check or credit card?

  • How soon

    what is the earlier time

  • Can I ask what it's regarding?

    (to learn why someone wants to speak to someone)

  • has nothing to do with someone / something

    does not concern or involve someon / something

  • can't make it

    not able to attend

  • make sure

    confirm; ensure

  • an hour late

    NOT late an hour

  • dressed up

    wearing their best clothes

  • put someone in charge

    give someone the job of leader or supervisor

  • keep someone posted

    update information when there are new developments