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For Students: Giving Advice

Updated: Oct 12, 2020

When someone has a problem or is unsure about something, they usually ask someone for some advice – ideas, and actions which they think are a good idea to help them. We use certain phrases and expressions to help us do this.

Let's imagine we have a friend who wants to go on holiday, but they are unsure where to go, and they ask us for some advice. A conversation might go something like this.

John: I'm not sure where to go on holiday

Bob: If I were you, I'd go to Spain. The weather is great this time of year.

John: I've never been to Spain. I'll add it to the list

The expression used to give advice in this conversation is if I were you, I'd... it's a very common expression for giving advice. Let's again imagine someone said 'I have a headache' We could again reply with 'If I were you, I'd... take some paracetamol '

We could also use some other expressions like the ones below to give our advice

You should/(n't) go to Spain...

I'd recommend going to...

I think Spain is a good idea

You'd be a fool not to go to Spain

We can also give stronger advice to people who have had a problem for a long time and are unsure what to do using some of the following expressions.

It's about time you...

It's high time you...

I strongly advise you to...

You have to.. / You must..

You had better...

It's best you...

Let's imagine we have a friend who hasn't had a job for a while. A conversation might go something like this.

John: I never have any money.

Bob: That's because you don't have a job. It's about time you got a job. You haven't worked for nearly a year. You have to get a job if you want some money

John: But I don't know what to do!

Bob: You had better start to think about that. It's best you think about what you don't want to do and then it might be

Now let's try putting these expressions into practice. Read the below email for Anna Advice, and then think about what kind of advice you could give, then try to write a reply using the following format.

Dear Anna

<thank John for writing>

<Understand the problem and give your opinion on it>

<advice number 1 and explain why you think it's a good idea>

<advice number 2 and explain why you think it's a good idea>

<Wish John luck>

Anna Advice

Dear Anna Advice,

I love my husband. We have a lovely house, beautiful children, and two cars. I suppose people think we have the perfect family. My husband doesn't know I have been cheating on him with his brother for the last two years. I don't love his brother, it's just a bit of fun. Recently, the brother has been txting me all the time. I think he has different feelings than me and I am worried he is prepared to tell my husband what has happened between us. What do I do?

Kind regards


Feel free to post your advice in the comments.


#english #learningenglish #Englishlesson #givingadvice #adviceinEnglish #students #englishstudents

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