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Conversational Phrases/B

Conversational phrases beginning with B. Select a phrase for more details.

back in the day | back in the old days

You can say this if you're talking about a time long ago, or a time much earlier in your life.

bad luck

You can say this to show you're sorry or sympathetic if something bad happens to someone.

bad luck! INFORMAL

You can say this if you have no sympathy for someone, esp. if they've caused their own problem.

be (only too) pleased to | be happy to FORMAL

You can say this if someone asks you to do something, and you're willing or happy to do it.

be my guest FORMAL

You can say this instead of "yes" if someone asks you for permission to do something.

be right with you | be right there INFORMAL

You can use this to tell someone you'll be with them very soon.

be seeing you INFORMAL

You can use this to say goodbye to someone if you're not sure when you'll be seeing them again.

be sure to

You can say this when you're reminding someone to do something.

be that as it may FORMAL

You can say this if what someone has just told you doesn't change your opinion or your plans.

beats me INFORMAL

You can say this if you don't know or understand something.

been had INFORMAL

to have been cheated, conned or overcharged

been there, done that INFORMAL

You can say this if you've done something before and you're not interested in doing it again.

believe (you) me

You can use this to emphasize the truth or importance of what you're saying.

believe it or not

You can say this when sharing some unexpected news or surprising information.

better late than never

You can say this when you're glad something's happened, but you wish it'd happened sooner.

better luck next time

You can say this to give encouragement or support to someone who's just failed to achieve something.

between you and me British and Australian English

You can say this to someone when you're about to tell them a secret.

big deal! INFORMAL

You can say this to show that you think something isn't important or impressive.

bless you

You can say this to someone after they've sneezed.

by all means FORMAL

You can say this to politely give someone permission to do something.

by any chance FORMAL

You can add this to a "yes/no" question to make it sound more polite, esp. when asking if somebody has something, likes something, knows something or someone, etc.

by the way

You can say this if you want to mention, or ask about, an unrelated topic, or if you want to change the topic.

Contributor: Matt Errey