Asking to speak to someone
It’s / This is X (here). Note: You don’t say I am X.
Can / Could I speak to Y, please? Y speaking. / Speaking.
Is that Y?
Is it a good / convenient time to call? I’m (rather) tied up at the moment.
Could you call back later?
I am afraid Y is not at his/her desk.
on another line.
with someone right now.
in a meeting.
not in the office
out of the office.
off sick today.
on holiday (until ...).
Giving and taking messages
I am calling about ...
I'm calling to confirm that ... Could I leave a message?
Could you tell Y that ... ?
Could you ask Y to call me back? My number is …
I wonder if you could call back later? Can I ask who's calling?
Who's calling please?
Which company are you calling from? May/Can I ask what it's about? May/Can I take a message?
Would you like to leave a message? I'll ask him/her to call you (when he/she gets back).
If you want to spell a name, you can say, for example, 'A for Alpha', 'B as in Bravo', etc.
You may also need these expressions:
- capital A - dash or hyphen (-)
- small a - slash (/)
- all one word - dot (.)
- new word/line - at (@)
Taking messages: checking information
a) I'm sorry, I didn't catch your name. Could you spell it, please? b) Is that with a D at the end, D for David?
c) Did you say your number is 624 426?
d) Is that with B for Bravo or V for Victor?
e) Where did you say you're calling from?
f) Is that with one M in the middle or two?
g) The code for Sweden is 49, right?
h) Is that Ginola like the football player?
Closing the conversation
Here are some ways of finishing a conversation without sounding abrupt (rude).
See you on Friday then. Yes, I'll look forward to see you on Friday. I'm going to have to go now.
I've got to go to a meeting.
I've got to go and see someone. Nice talking to you. (It's been) nice talking to you. (It's been) good talking to you. Good to talk to you.
Talk to you soon, no doubt. Thanks for calling/phoning. We'll be (back) in touch soon.
Look forward to hearing from you soon.