Reply to ""Can" vs "could" vs "would""

subhajit123 posted:
So when making requests in a polite manner can I use would and could interchangeably in sentences like these ?

Hi, Subhajit,

Yes, would and could can be used interchangeably in making polite requests. As a native speaker, I tend naturally to use could in such requests when I am out in public and actually making such requests in circumstances that are not very formal.

I find would to be a tad more formal and/or serious than could in such requests, but that is something that could easily be debated among native speakers. I do use would occasionally in such requests. You are right that can is less polite. The same thing could be said about will, which is also possible.

Last edited by David, Moderator
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