As many of you will know, “please” and “thank you” are very important words to use in the English Language. Many of my clients who have visited the UK often tell me how noticeable the use of these two words are in everyday life with the British. Practically every conversation is peppered with a “please” or “thank you”. I often have to remind my clients not to expect any service from the British if they don’t use these words.
Consequently, in the third post in my English Skills series, I’d like to focus on the different ways of saying Thank You. Once again, I have Macmillan Dictionary Blog to thank for giving me the idea and resource. I’ve used their post and added some of my examples to it.
Thanks and Thank you are the most common ways of telling someone you are grateful for something they have said or done.
Thank you is slightly more formal.
1. Thanks a lot, (2) Thanks very much, (3) Thank you very much, or (4) Thank you so much
If you want to emphasize your gratitude, or be very polite, you can say the above expressions.
- Thank you so much for helping me out today.
- ‘You’re looking well.’ ‘Thanks.’
- Thank you very much for dinner – it was great.
- Thanks a lot for looking after the children.
- Thanks very much for making dinner tonight.
5. Thanks a bunch
This is an informal way of thanking someone, but can sometimes be used sarcastically, when telling someone that something they did was not helpful or kind. (Both Thanks a lot and Thanks very much can also be used in this way)
- I am much obliged to you for your patience during the recent difficulties.
- “You can use the facilities whilst you are in the club”. “Much obliged“.
7. You’ve saved my life and (8) I owe you one/I owe you big time.
The above expressions are informal ways of thanking someone who has helped you in a difficult situation.
- Thanks for giving me a lift to the station. You saved my life.
- Thanks for the advice. I owe you one.
- Thanks for helping me out with the essay. I owe you big time.
This is another informal way of thanking someone which is frequently used in British English. Many learners have adopted this word and sometimes use it inappropriately in written English. Please remember that “cheers” is used informally and therefore shouldn’t be used when writing to people you don’t know or in business emails.
- ‘Here’s that book you wanted to borrow.’ ‘Oh, cheers.‘
- “Would you like a drink?” “That’d be great. Cheers.“
10. You shouldn’t (have)
We can use this expression when someone gives you a present and you’re very surprised:
- Oh, Martin, what lovely flowers. You shouldn’t have!
11. You’re too kind
This is a polite way of thanking someone that can sometimes sound insincere (depending on who is saying it!)
- Thank you for for the glowing praise. You’re too kind.
12. I’d like to thank…
This is used when thanking people in a formal speech (for example, the Oscars)
- I’d like to thank everyone for coming along and supporting us today.
13. Many thanks
This is a formal way of saying thank you used in letters and emails
- Many thanks for the lovely present.
I told you we had many ways of saying “thank you” in English! Do you know others?
Thank you so much for reading my post.
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Ciao for now
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