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Thank you
for not
complaining!
	I’d like to make a complaint.
	I’d like to speak to the manager, please.
	I’ve been waiting here for twenty
minutes and no one’s attended to me.
	I’d like to put in a formal complaint.
	I’d like to see the complaints book,
please.
	Actually, I didn’t want this one, I wanted...
	 You must have understood me when I
said...
	I’m sorry to trouble you, but…
	Excuse me but there seems to be a
problem with…
	I think there’s been a misunderstanding...
	I don’t think I explained myself very well.
What I meant to say was...
	I’m afraid you didn’t understand what I
was trying to say.
	What I was trying to say was that...
	I wonder if you could help me...
	 Do you think you could help me with this,
please?
	I’m sorry to have to say this, but….
	I’m sorry about that.
	I can’t tell you how sorry we are.
	I’ll deal with it immediately.
	Leave it with me.
	I’ll see what I can do.
	I suggest you leave it with us and we’ll
see what we can do.
	I’m afraid the manager isn’t in at the
moment. Could you call later?
	I’m afraid we can’t help you at the
moment. Could you leave your contact
phone number and we’ll get back to you
as soon as we can.
	Well, I’m afraid there’s nothing we can
do about it.
	I’m sorry but that’s really not our
responsibility.
	I’m sorry but that’s not really part of my
responsibility.
	If you’d read the contract carefully, you’d
have seen that...
	Well, I’m afraid there isn’t much we can
do about that.
Patricia is staying at a luxury hotel in New York. But she’s having
some problems. So she decides to make a complaint at the front
desk. [Listen and complete with the verbs from below.]
Desk clerk:	 Hello madam. How can I help you?
Patricia: 		 [annoyed] I’d like to speak to the manager, please. I want to make a
complaint.
Desk clerk:	 Oh, I’m sorry but the manager is out at the moment. Can I help?
Patricia:		 Let’s see… I (1) a room with a double bed, but the room
you gave me has a single bed.
Desk clerk:	 Oh, well, that’s easy to sort out. I can put you into room 459, which has
a double bed. Was that all?
Patricia:		 No, not even close. I (2) room service for lunch today. And
when it came, I (3) a hair in my soup.
Desk clerk:	 Oh dear. I’ll speak to the chef straight away. Erm… to make it up to you,
here’s a voucher for a free lunch in the hotel’s fine-dining restaurant.
Patricia:		 That’s the least you could do. Next problem. I can’t find my iPad. It
was in the room this morning, and now it’s gone. I think the maid (4)
it.
Desk clerk:	 Oh dear. I suggest you leave that with me and I’ll speak to housekeeping.
But I doubt one of our maids would have stolen it. Have you got the
serial number? If you have, we can get a police report. You’ll need it in
order to claim the money back from your insurance company.
Patricia:		 Erm, yes, I (5) it’s in my bag... Oh, look, isn’t that strange.
My iPad is in my bag.
Desk clerk: 	What a relief! Is there anything else, madam?
Patricia:		 One last thing. And I’m afraid this is a very serious complaint.
Desk clerk:	 OK…
Patricia:		 I’m getting a bit fed up of this dreadful weather. It’s been raining
the whole time I’ve been here! I mean, this wasn’t mentioned in the
brochure or on the website. And the photos you (6)
showed sunny days, not grey, rainy ones like today. I feel a bit cheated.
Desk clerk:	 Well, I’m afraid there isn’t much we can do about the weather. But we
do have a lovely selection of umbrellas in the gift shop.
Patricia:		 I don’t (7) an umbrella! I want sunshine! I’m sorry to have
to say this, but this is the worst hotel I’ve ever stayed in.
Desk clerk:	 Oh, I am sorry to hear that. Perhaps
madam would (8) the
hotel opposite? I hear they have
excellent weather.
Track 8: Englishman &
Englishwoman
Practise speaking English with us. Sign up for telephone classes here: www.telephone-english.com 13
Objective: To learn how to make a complaint in English.
Have you ever had to complain about something? What was it? How did it go? What’s the best way to deal with a
complaint?
Think about it!
Practical English:complaining
Dialogue
Complaining in a shop, etc.
Introducing a problem
Accepting a complaint
Delaying a complaint
Rejecting a complaint
think prefer stoleordered found usedwant booked
GLOSSARY
a voucher n	
a ticket or piece of paper that can be used
instead of money to pay for something

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He128 complain p13

  • 1. Thank you for not complaining! I’d like to make a complaint. I’d like to speak to the manager, please. I’ve been waiting here for twenty minutes and no one’s attended to me. I’d like to put in a formal complaint. I’d like to see the complaints book, please. Actually, I didn’t want this one, I wanted... You must have understood me when I said... I’m sorry to trouble you, but… Excuse me but there seems to be a problem with… I think there’s been a misunderstanding... I don’t think I explained myself very well. What I meant to say was... I’m afraid you didn’t understand what I was trying to say. What I was trying to say was that... I wonder if you could help me... Do you think you could help me with this, please? I’m sorry to have to say this, but…. I’m sorry about that. I can’t tell you how sorry we are. I’ll deal with it immediately. Leave it with me. I’ll see what I can do. I suggest you leave it with us and we’ll see what we can do. I’m afraid the manager isn’t in at the moment. Could you call later? I’m afraid we can’t help you at the moment. Could you leave your contact phone number and we’ll get back to you as soon as we can. Well, I’m afraid there’s nothing we can do about it. I’m sorry but that’s really not our responsibility. I’m sorry but that’s not really part of my responsibility. If you’d read the contract carefully, you’d have seen that... Well, I’m afraid there isn’t much we can do about that. Patricia is staying at a luxury hotel in New York. But she’s having some problems. So she decides to make a complaint at the front desk. [Listen and complete with the verbs from below.] Desk clerk: Hello madam. How can I help you? Patricia: [annoyed] I’d like to speak to the manager, please. I want to make a complaint. Desk clerk: Oh, I’m sorry but the manager is out at the moment. Can I help? Patricia: Let’s see… I (1) a room with a double bed, but the room you gave me has a single bed. Desk clerk: Oh, well, that’s easy to sort out. I can put you into room 459, which has a double bed. Was that all? Patricia: No, not even close. I (2) room service for lunch today. And when it came, I (3) a hair in my soup. Desk clerk: Oh dear. I’ll speak to the chef straight away. Erm… to make it up to you, here’s a voucher for a free lunch in the hotel’s fine-dining restaurant. Patricia: That’s the least you could do. Next problem. I can’t find my iPad. It was in the room this morning, and now it’s gone. I think the maid (4) it. Desk clerk: Oh dear. I suggest you leave that with me and I’ll speak to housekeeping. But I doubt one of our maids would have stolen it. Have you got the serial number? If you have, we can get a police report. You’ll need it in order to claim the money back from your insurance company. Patricia: Erm, yes, I (5) it’s in my bag... Oh, look, isn’t that strange. My iPad is in my bag. Desk clerk: What a relief! Is there anything else, madam? Patricia: One last thing. And I’m afraid this is a very serious complaint. Desk clerk: OK… Patricia: I’m getting a bit fed up of this dreadful weather. It’s been raining the whole time I’ve been here! I mean, this wasn’t mentioned in the brochure or on the website. And the photos you (6) showed sunny days, not grey, rainy ones like today. I feel a bit cheated. Desk clerk: Well, I’m afraid there isn’t much we can do about the weather. But we do have a lovely selection of umbrellas in the gift shop. Patricia: I don’t (7) an umbrella! I want sunshine! I’m sorry to have to say this, but this is the worst hotel I’ve ever stayed in. Desk clerk: Oh, I am sorry to hear that. Perhaps madam would (8) the hotel opposite? I hear they have excellent weather. Track 8: Englishman & Englishwoman Practise speaking English with us. Sign up for telephone classes here: www.telephone-english.com 13 Objective: To learn how to make a complaint in English. Have you ever had to complain about something? What was it? How did it go? What’s the best way to deal with a complaint? Think about it! Practical English:complaining Dialogue Complaining in a shop, etc. Introducing a problem Accepting a complaint Delaying a complaint Rejecting a complaint think prefer stoleordered found usedwant booked GLOSSARY a voucher n a ticket or piece of paper that can be used instead of money to pay for something