Saying Please

We use please to make a request more polite.

  • Would you move a bit, please?
  • Could you open the window, please?
  • ‘Would you like some help?’ ‘Yes, please.’

Please do is a rather formal answer to a request for permission.

  • ‘Do you mind if I open the window?’ ‘Please do.’
Situations where please is not used

We do not use please to ask people what they have said.

  • ‘I have got a bit of a headache.’ ‘I beg your pardon?’ (NOT … Please?)
  • ‘John is on the phone.’ ‘Sorry?’ (NOT …Please?)

Please is not used as an answer to Thank you.

  • ‘Thanks a lot.’ ‘That’s OK.’ (NOT … ‘Please.’)

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