precious time or valuable time

Discussion in 'English Only' started by tstrmkll, Sep 6, 2005.

  1. tstrmkll New Member

    Belgium, Brussels
    Finland, Finnish
    Hi,

    if I would like to be polite in the letter and ask some help, so is it better to say "Is it possible to use your precious time" or valuable time, or what should be the best way to express the request.

     
  2. Helicopta

    Helicopta Senior Member

    Kettering
    England - English (Learning Spanish)
    Either should be fine but first I would ask how well you know the person. If you know them well it would probably be viewed as slightly joking but friendly. If you don’t know them very well it could possibly be taken as being a little sarcastic. Maybe that's just how I would see it, so wait and see what others have to say.
    Personally, I would write: Is it possible that you could spare me some (of your) time?
     
  3. tstrmkll New Member

    Belgium, Brussels
    Finland, Finnish
    Thank you Helicopta,

    becouse, when I try to be polite and reveal myself its difficult to know who other person hear those words.

    If I use as you suggest "Is it possible that you could spare me some (of your) time?", what would be appropriet way to end this kind of letter.
     
  4. modgirl Senior Member

    USA English, French, Russian
    I agree with Helicopta and think that the use of "precious" may sound a bit sarcastic.

    I would simply say, "I appreciate your valuable time."

    I understand that you're trying to be very polite, but I wouldn't ask someone to "spare" me time. The best way to show that you do appreciate someone's time is to word your letter succinctly (without a lot of extra words). Get right to the point.
     
  5. Helicopta

    Helicopta Senior Member

    Kettering
    England - English (Learning Spanish)
    I'm afraid that using 'valuable' sounds equally sarcastic as 'precious' to me (maybe it's just me). I think 'would' or 'could' should be in there somewhere as tstrmkll is asking someone to give up their time to help him/her, not thanking them for having done so.

    Maybe 'spare' is a little too informal. What about "Your time would be greatly appreciated" or "I would very much appreciate your time"?
     
  6. GenJen54

    GenJen54 Senior Member

    Downright Pleasant, USA
    USA - English
    I don't think it's a matter of sarcasm, so much as it is a matter of appropriate context.

    From a business perspective, I think one would hear that time is "valuable." Afterall, to a corporate executive, time = money.

    To a mother with a growing child, time spent with that child is "precious." In this case, precious carries with it an idea of emotional value, not monetary value.

    In asking someone to meet with you, I agree with modgirl in that I would be polite, but keep the letter as to-the-point as possible. Afterall, if they consider their time to be valuable, they do not have much to ready wordy letters.

    I would keep your request simple, and put it in the form of a question. I would also state your specific intent and a suggested amount of time the meeting might take.

    If you can give us a bit more context, we might be able to help formulate a paragraph that would be deemed appropriate.

    Best of Luck!
     
  7. tstrmkll New Member

    Belgium, Brussels
    Finland, Finnish
    Thank you your time spending with my question.



    I have bought a new car and the salesperson was very kind and she did her work very well, and I am sending email to her. I would like to know when they are able to deliver the car and the same email to ask more questions about the car. I know that this is her job to give those answers but I would like to put little bit more than short questions. Probably time is money to her.
     
  8. GenJen54

    GenJen54 Senior Member

    Downright Pleasant, USA
    USA - English
    You could try something like this,

    Dear Carsalesperson,

    Thank you for taking the time to work with me on selecting my new <name of car here.> You really went out of your way to ensure my car buying experience was a pleasant one.

    Per our discussion last <day>, we discussed several issues, including a probable delivery date for the vehicle. I would appreciate it if you could confirm the exact date of delivery so I may make appropriate arrangments to receive it.

    I also have some other questions: (Ask your questions here).

    1. question No. 1
    2. question No. 2
    3. question No. 3

    Thank you very much for your prompt and courteous attention to this matter.

    Sincerely,

    <your name here>
     
  9. tstrmkll New Member

    Belgium, Brussels
    Finland, Finnish
    Thank you GenJen54,



    That is what I was looking for,



    “You really went out of your way…”



    “Thank you very much for your prompt and courteous attention to this matter”



    These will improve my correspondence.

    I wish I am able to give my assistant for returne, sometimes
     

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