English often seems more complicated than it is. Language courses often teach you the most formal way to say things, but English speakers are rarely so formal. Here are some quick tips to get you speaking like a native even when you are still a Beginner!
One word answers
The formal way to respond to a question like ‘Do you like Berlin?’ is ‘Yes, I do.’ or No, I don’t.’ However, native speakers usually respond much more informally. Here are some examples.
Contractions are your friends
Native speakers contract words in English all the time, even in quite formal situations. For example, in a business meeting, it would be unusual to hear someone say ‘I would like you to tell me when he has signed the contract.’ Instead, you would hear ‘I’d like you to tell me when he’s signed the contract.’
Try to learn all the common contractions and use them as often as you can – you’ll sound much more fluent immediately!
Shorten your sentences
English speakers are always shortening their sentences so they can say more, faster. For example, it’s quite common to drop the question word and the pronoun at the start of a sentence. This sounds very informal, but very natural. In some cases, you can drop everything in a question except the noun! Be careful though – this doesn’t work with every sentence. Learn a few examples first, then copy what native speakers say.
Do you want some ice-cream? – Want some ice-cream?
Would you like some coffee? – Coffee?
Is it good? – Good?
Do you want to watch TV tonight? – TV tonight?
Want to sound even more fluent – brush up your vocabulary and grammar on busuu!