Asking for help and advice is difficult for some, but everyone needs help from time to time. Knowing how to ask for help may save you a lot of time and trouble in many situations. Fortunately, most people are willing to give it in a time of need.

Most of the time of course the help needed is for something minor. But sometimes the help may be a matter of life or death. The expressions below are generally used for asking for help about small problems that require minor assistance. For anything really, really major- the need for help is usually readily apparent and would not require someone to ask- such as in a fire or a serious car accident.
Look at these English expressions to ask for help.

English Expressions Used when Asking for Help
  To offer help
      Would you like some help?Yes, that would be great.
     Can I give you a hand? Thanks, much obliged
     Do you need a hand? No thanks, I’ve got it.
     May I offer my assistance?
That would be so kind, thank you.
  To ask for help
     Could you give me a hand?
     Would you mind helping me out? Not at all.
     Could you help me please?My pleasure



As with help, people need advice from time to time. Your family or friends may need advice about relationships, financial investments, or how to deal with an irritating co-worker. Some people may actually give you advice when is it unwanted. Just be sure that the advice given is good advice.
Look at these English expressions to ask for advice.

English Expressions Used when Asking for Advice
     What do you think I should do?Why don’t you (…. take a taxi).
     What would you do in my shoes?
Have you thought about (…. getting some medicine at the pharmacy)?
     Do you have any ideas about what to
I think you should ( …. see a doctor).
     What would you suggest?
Have you considered ( …. the local markets. They have great deals).
      Can you think of anything that might
One option may be to (…. call your embassy).


Betty: I’m going to paint my kitchen this weekend. Would you like to help?
Kerri: I don’t like to paint, but I’ll help you anyway.
Betty: Great, now I need some advice.
Kerri OK, about what?
Betty: Should I use water or oil based paint?
Kerri: I would use oil based, it’s easier to clean.
Betty: Are paint brushes or rollers best?
Kerri: I suggest using both, brushes for the trim and rollers for the walls and ceiling.
Betty: Thanks, I knew you were the person I needed to talk to.

Practice Activities

Find a partner and practice using English expressions to ask for help and advice in the following situations.


Moving to a new apartment
Fixing a flat tire
Putting a heavy box into a trunk of a car


How to quick smoking
How to deal with a young child that bites his sister
How to save for retirement

To find other conversation activities and dialogues for help and advice take a look at:
Conversation Made Easy OR Talk, Talk, Talk

Other links for Help
XX Expressions for Help
XX Asking for Help
XX Helpful Expressions