You can use the following words and expressions in conversations to make suggestions and give advice to people.
“You should try to practise English.”
“You shouldn’t translate too much.”
Why don’t you
“Why don’t you join an English club?”
“You ought to read more.”
If I were you, I’d…
“If I were you, I’d watch more television.”
*All these expressions are followed by a verb, without to. For example: “He should visit the Eiffel Tower.” (Not “he should to visit the Eiffel Tower.”)
For more information on using would, ought and should, see our page on modals.
suggest and recommend
Either use a verb + ing
“I suggest visiting the Eiffel Tower.” (We should all go.)
OR use that + a verb without to
“I suggest that you visit the Eiffel Tower.” (I’m not going.)
OR use a noun
“I recommend the lasagne.” (It’s a very good dish to choose in this restaurant.)
Remember the difference between the verb and the noun form of this word.
“I advise you to buy a good dictionary.” (The pronunciation is ad – vaiz)
“Can you give me some advice?” (The pronunciation is ad – vais)
Advice is an uncountable noun. This means that we can’t say an advice. Instead, we say some advice or a piece of advice.
“Let me give you some advice.”
“She gave me a very useful piece of advice: to buy a good dictionary.”
Many people don’t like getting advice if they haven’t asked for it! To avoid giving the wrong impression, you can try some of these expressions:
“You could always…”
“Have you considered…”
“Perhaps we could…”
“Do you think it’s a good idea to…”
“Have you thought about…”
“In your position, I would…”
“You should perhaps…”
Suggestions and Advice Quiz
Level: Pre-intermediate and above
- Remember: ''should'' is a modal verb and is followed by the infinitive without ''to''.
- ''Ought'' is another way to give advice. It's pronounced ''ort'' and is followed by the infinitive with ''to''.
- Why don't you + infinitive without ''to'' is a good way to make a suggestion. (''Optician'' = a shop where you can get an eye test and buy glasses.)
- The verb ''suggest'' is followed by a gerund (getting), a noun, or by that + subject + infinitive without ''to''.
- ''If I were you, I'd...'' is like a second conditional, with If I + past form of verb to be and I would (I'd) in the other clause.
- ''You could always ...'' is another way to make a friendly suggestion.
- Remember: ''advice'' is a noun, while ''advise'' is a verb.
- After the verb ''consider'' use a noun or a gerund. ''Have you considered...?'' is a good way to make a friendly suggestion.
- ''Perhaps we could...'' is another way to make a suggestion.
- We ''make a suggestion''.