Very often, inexperienced users of a foreign language ask the question: “How to contact new acquaintances? What forms to use? After all, it is known that depending on the status and position of the addressee, the forms of appeal vary. Therefore, we decided to clarify and once and for all figure out how and in what situations to address different categories of people.
On the letter, the status is indicated:
Mr. – Mister (addressing a man)
Mrs. – Misses (appeal to a married woman)
Miss – Miss (appeal to an unmarried woman)
Ms – Mizz (appeal to both married and unmarried women)
Before we begin, you need to remember: the form of address indicates that you take into account such characteristics of the addressee as gender, age, level of education, etc.
So, let's start with the safest option, namely, ask yourself how the addressee prefers to be addressed.
- What should I call you? - What should I call you?
- What should I call your mum / the teacher / the manager? – What should I call your mother/teacher/manager?
- Can I call you [first name]? – May I call you [Name]?
- Is it okay if I call you [Nickname]? “Is it okay if I call you [Friend Name]?”
- What's your name? - What is your name?
If you heard one of these questions addressed to you, then you can answer this way:
- Please, call me [first name] - Please call me [first name]
- You can call me [nickname or short form] - You can call me [nickname or short name]
To attract the attention of the addressee, use the expressions
Excuse me, Sir/ Madam
Pardon me, Sir/ Madam
If you are in a formal setting, such as a business meeting, negotiation or presentation, then it's okay to have a couple of formal addresses up your sleeve.
- Sir (for an adult male)
- Madam (for an adult woman)
- Mr + last name (for any man)
- Mrs + last name (for a married woman who uses her husband's last name)
- Ms + last name (for a married or unmarried woman; common in business)
- Miss + last name (for an unmarried woman)
- Dr + last name (for some doctors, at their request, they use not the last name, but the first name)
- Professor + last name (at university/institute)
Sometimes it happens that an official after a while asks you to call him by his name. In English this is called 'on a first name basis' or 'on first name terms'. This is the name of a relationship that seems official only at first glance, but in fact is closer.
But most often, of course, we use appeals not in the business world, but in the everyday world. For example, how to address your soul mate, mother or child? Here are some suggestions.
- Honey (for a child, loved one, or someone younger than you)
- Babe or Baby (for a loved one)
- Pal (appeal to son or grandson)
- Buddy or Bud (very colloquial between friends; sometimes used with negative connotations)