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Asking for and giving advice

Asking for advice and giving advice

Advice (noun

To advise (verb)

The noun ‘advice’ is uncountable. It is not correct to say ‘an advice’ or ‘one advice’, but you can say ‘a piece of advice’  to mean one (singular) or ‘ pieces of advice’ if you want to mean many ( plural). 

Asking for advice

A lot of people ask for advice online as well as face to face. Here are a variety of important expressions that you can use to ask for advice in different situations.

  • What should I do?
  • What can I do?
  • What do you think I should do?
  • What do you advise me to do?
  • What would you do in this situation?
  • What would you do if you were me?
  • If you were me, what would you do?
  • Do you think it’s a good idea to … in this situation?
  • What do you suggest?
  • How can I……?
  • What’s the best…..?

Giving advice (expressing advice)

To give advice, you can use the following expressions and phrases:

  • You had better (you’d better) + infinitive without ‘to’
  • You should + infinitive without ‘to’
  • Why not + infinitive without ‘to’
  • You ought to …
  • If I were you, I would (not) …
  • I advise you to…
  • Why don’t you (+infinitive without ‘to’)…?
  • It may/might be a good idea to…
  • Have you thought about + verb+ing?
  • What/ how about + verb +ing?

Try to practise these ways of giving advice and ways of asking for advice whenever it is possible. Use them in face to face situations and online in advice columns as well.

Giving advice examples

  • You should do some exercise during your preparation for the exam.
  • You ought to reduce consuming sugar.
  • You had better write your daily plans.
  • I advise you to practise what you have learnt.
  • It may be a good idea to travel to an English-speaking country with the aim of improving your English.

Exercises