I’m a real DIY fan in my spare time. That stands for Do it Yourself. In other words, doing work in my home and garden. Most times, I know what I’m doing, but sometimes I need advice. I normally get that from watching YouTube videos.

But in most cases, it is me, who is the person giving the advice. I like to advise people, just like you! Hopefully these phrase suggestions will help you, when you give advice in English the next time!

The following phrases contain the modal verbs should and ought to. They are considered a polite way to give advice.


He ought to wear a coat in this cold weather.

You should do more exercise.

She ought not to go out so late at night.

You should not be rude to your sister.


For stronger advice you can use ‘have to’ or if you think it’s essential ‘must’:


You have to watch the new Jame’s Bond film. You’ll love it!

You must see a dentist, if you have toothache.


We can be diplomatic by using ‘recommend’ and ‘suggest’:


I suggest taking a holiday.

I recommend going to bed earlier.

I suggest that you look at the map again.

I recommend that you exercise more.


Turning your advice into a question, is also a friendly way to persuade someone to consider the advice we are offering.


Why don’t you go to see your doctor?

How about asking your boss for a holiday?

Why don’t we go for a walk?

How about cutting down on sugary food?


We can put ourselves into the person’s position in order to recommend he or she follows our advice.


If I were you, I would speak to your colleague about your problem.

If I were you, I would get the car repaired.


We can use imperative verbs to give stronger emphasis on the importance of the advice we are giving.


Switch off the TV and go outside.

Stop working and go home.

Wash your hands immediately.

Close the door after you leave.


Another way to make our advice stronger, is to use the phrase ‘you had better…’, Be careful! This may sound like an order.


You had better ask your mother, before you use her car.

You’d better go now, if you want to catch the bus.


We hope that this advice we have given you will help you do the same for others!



Giving advice

Click on the image to watch a video about how to Giving Advice in English

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