Budge Over

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khkim313

New Member
Korean - Korea
When I'm sitting on a bench with a stranger next to me,
and I want to ask if he or she could budge over to make a space
for my friend to sit, is it polite to ask "Do you mind budging over please?"
 
  • Barque

    Banned
    Tamil
    I've only ever heard "budge" used negatively - he refused to budge, he wouldn't budge.

    I just looked it up and apparently it can be used in a "positive" way as well. I don't know if there are places where it's commonly used that way.
     

    JulianStuart

    Senior Member
    English (UK then US)
    I don't think I've heard it since I moved to the US but it's quite common in BE, although rather too informal for use with a complete stranger. The members from BE land will awaken and join us shortly to see if this is still the case:D
     

    perpend

    Banned
    American English
    I would probably use "to scoot over" in AmE, but Julian makes a good point that neither "budge over" nor "scoot over" are very polite and/or formal.

    Maybe better (in AmE): Would you mind moving over a little to make room for my friend?
     
    Last edited:

    ewie

    Senior Member
    English English
    Maybe better (in AmE): Would you mind moving over a little to make room for my friend?
    That's exactly what I would say:)

    Budge is too informal, and somewhat brusque, to use with a stranger ~ unless you have a particularly winning smile and charming manner:thumbsup:
     

    cando

    Senior Member
    English - British
    In informal (family or friends) settings, it is very common and would be the normal thing I would say in the form: "budge up a bit" and is not at all negative. Rather than being rude or brusque, it's casualness assumes a degree of intimacy and familiarity between those concerned. It's the sort of thing you might say on the sofa/ settee at home. "Budge over" is slightly stronger as a command to my ears, conveying a mild degree of irritation.
     

    Parla

    Member Emeritus
    English - US
    I'd never heard of "budge over" as a request until I saw this thread; I agree with Barque as to use of the word "budge" (post #2). So I wouldn't use it. Nor would I use "scoot"; to me, that means to run fast. I'd use "would you mind moving over", as Perpend suggests in post #4.
     

    heypresto

    Senior Member
    English - England
    In informal (family or friends) settings, it is very common and would be the normal thing I would say in the form: "budge up a bit" and is not at all negative. Rather than being rude or brusque, it's casualness assumes a degree of intimacy and familiarity between those concerned. It's the sort of thing you might say on the sofa/ settee at home. "Budge over" is slightly stronger as a command to my ears, conveying a mild degree of irritation.
    :thumbsup::thumbsup:
     

    Roxxxannne

    Senior Member
    American English (New England and NYC)
    In the midwest of the US 'budge the line' means to push in ahead of other people who are standing in (or on) a line.
     

    kentix

    Senior Member
    English - U.S.
    "Scooch over" also exists in AE as a very casual alternative to scoot. In some contexts and some types of seating it's possible to say "can you slide over?". But for a stranger, I would say the same as above: Would you mind moving over?

    Factoid:
    In Liberian English, the equivalent of "scoot over a little" is "dress small".
    dress = move over
    small = a little
     
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