Modal Verbs For A Dinner Date

When eating in a UK restaurant we use modal verbs to order food. The modal verbs we regularly us are: can, could, may, might, must, shall, should, will and would.

Whatever you do don’t use the imperative e.g. “Get me a beer” or “Bring me a glass of water”. If you use the imperative the waiter you'll come across as rude and risk upsetting the staff.

So keep on the right side of the waiter and impress your dinner date, always use modal verbs when eating out. Below are some examples. Modal verbs are underlined, see below.

  • Would you like to order any coffee?
  • Can we have some water please?
  • Could I see the wine list please?
  • May I take your order please?
  • I might have another glass of wine.
  • You must be joking!
  • Shall we see the dessert menu?
  • Should we order a taxi?
  • Will you get off the phone?