hospitality industry english exercises


Pick a category
 Food & Beverage (restaurants, cafes, bars, catering, etc.)
 Hotel Industry (hotels, resorts, spas, etc.)
 Travel/Tourism (travel agents, tour guides, flight attendants, etc.)
 Politeness Training (the right way to speak to customers/guests in English)


topic: The proper way to talk to travelers/passengers in English 3

Part of providing good customer service is knowing the right way to communicate. English has its own "accepted" ways of talking to customers/clients/guests. If you don't use these, or if you use them incorrectly, you might come across ( = be seen) as rude or unprofessional. In the exercise below, pretend that someone is asking you the question in italics. Choose the best, most polite response:

1. I have to go to the bathroom!
  I understand, but you have to remain seated while the seatbelt sign is on.
  No, you can't. Not now.
  Please wait. You'll go soon.

2. Since it's the airline's fault that I missed my flight, are you going to pay for my hotel?
  Yes, we will. I was going to tell you that myself, so you didn't have to remind me.
  Yes, we will.
  Of course. Why wouldn't we? It's our fault, after all.

3. Is this turbulence normal?
  Yes, of course it is.
  On most flights you'll get some turbulence. Anyone who flies knows this.
  Yes, it's pretty common.

4. Why can't my son go into the cockpit?
  I'm sorry, it's against the rules.
  It's not allowed. OK?
  It's forbidden. He can't.

5. My headset isn't working.
  This is your fault. You didn't plug it in all the way.
  It would if it were plugged in all the way.
  Here you go. It wasn't plugged in all the way.

6. Will my luggage show up eventually?
  Yes, yes. Don't worry.
  About 95% of lost bags show up within 24 hours.
  It probably will. But I'm not a fortune teller.

7. I've got two carry-on bags. Is that alright?
  No, you're only allowed one carry on bag. You'll have to check the other one.
  One. You're allowed one.
  No, I'll get into trouble if I let you do that.

8. Is it safe to walk around this neighborhood at night?
  You have got to be kidding! It's very dangerous!
  I wouldn't recommend it. It's very dangerous!
  That is a terrible idea!

9. I'm not interested in museums.
  Too bad. It's a good one.
  Well, the city has plenty of other attractions.
  You have to have an open mind, sir!

10. Isn't New York City dangerous?
  No, you're wrong. It's quite safe.
  Where did you hear that? That was 20 years ago.
  That was many years ago. Nowadays, it's quite safe.


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tips and tricks about customer service - for esl students

Don't be patronizing. To "patronize" someone means to talk to someone in a condescending manner - to talk down to them. It creates the impression that you're not treating someone as your equal. Remember, your aim is to help people, not to make them feel uncomfortable.

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