Dialogue

Vocabulary

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Lesson Notes

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Lesson Transcript

INTRODUCTION
Eric: Hi everybody! Eric here!
Becky: Hello everyone! Becky here. This is Hospitality English for Hotels, Season 2, Lesson 18 - Helping A Guest Who is in a Restricted Area.
Eric: In this lesson you will learn how to tell a customer that they are not allowed to do something.
Becky: This conversation takes place in a restricted hotel room, in the morning.
Eric: It is between a staff member and a guest.
Becky: The speakers are in a professional relationship, so they will be speaking formal English. Let’s listen to the conversation.

Lesson conversation

Staff: Excuse me sir, I am sorry, but this is a restricted area. May I help you find something?
Customer: Oh! I’m sorry! I was just looking for the pool. I think I made a wrong turn...
Staff: (laughs) Not a problem, sir. It happens all the time. Please follow me and I can take you to the pool.
Customer: Oh, thank you.
Staff: You're very welcome sir.
Becky: Let’s hear the conversation one time slowly.
Staff: Excuse me sir, I am sorry, but this is a restricted area. May I help you find something?
Customer: Oh! I’m sorry! I was just looking for the pool. I think I made a wrong turn...
Staff: Haha! Not a problem sir. It happens all the time. Please follow me and I can take you to the pool.
Customer: Oh, thank you.
Staff: You're very welcome sir.
POST CONVERSATION BANTER
Eric: English is a time-stressed language, which means that how you emphasize words and where you place them in a sentence can dramatically change the feeling and even the meaning of your sentence.
Becky: One way that you can emphasize an apology is by breaking apart the contraction. The meaning stays the same, but the feeling behind it changes dramatically.
Eric: For example, you would normally say, "I’m sorry." This is a perfectly acceptable way to apologize for something.
Becky: It is. But one way to say this with a little more feeling is "I am sorry." Here the "am" gets more emphasis and that emphasis makes your apology seem more sincere. Okay, now let’s move on to the vocab.
VOCAB LIST
Becky: Let's take a look at the vocabulary for this lesson.
The first word is
Eric: restricted area [natural native speed]
Becky: area with limited access, area only certain people may access
Eric: restricted area [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Eric: restricted area [natural native speed]
Becky: Next is...
Eric: wrong turn [natural native speed]
Becky: incorrect turn, lost my way
Eric: wrong turn [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Eric: wrong turn [natural native speed]
Becky: And last we have...
Eric: happens all the time [natural native speed]
Becky: occurs frequently, happens often
Eric: happens all the time [slowly - broken down by syllable]
Eric: happens all the time [natural native speed]
KEY VOCAB AND PHRASES
Becky: Let’s take a closer look at some of the words and phrases from this lesson.
Eric: The first phrase we are going to look at is "happens all the time."
Becky: This phrase is an expression that means "happens frequently" or "happens often." It doesn’t literally mean, "all the time" or "always."
Eric: Listeners, you should say this phrase with a kind of playful and slightly dismissive tone.
Becky: That’s right. Kind of like when you say "Don’t worry about it." Your tone will let the other person know that there’s really no problem at all.
Eric: So, it would be something like "Don’t worry about it, sir, this happens all the time."
Becky: Our next phrase is "restricted area."
Eric: That’s right. In the dialogue, the staff member used the phrase "restricted area" to indirectly tell the guest two things.
Becky: That’s right. Those two things were, one, that the guest shouldn’t be there, and two, that they should leave. However, since she was talking to a guest, she was very careful to use a positive and understanding tone of voice.
Eric: Exactly. Notice how the staff did not simply say "You're not supposed to be here. Get out." Even if a guest is in a restricted area, it is usually only by accident, so you should be kind and help them get to where they want to go.
Becky: A quick pronunciation tip is that this word is naturally pronounced in a way that makes the “d” in “restricted” carried over to the “a” in area, and the sound comes out as "Restrict-did-darea." Okay, now onto the grammar.

Lesson focus

Eric: In this lesson, you’ll learn how to tell a customer they are not allowed to do something.
Becky: In the dialogue, we heard the phrase "Excuse me sir, I am sorry, but this is a restricted area."
Eric: So, telling a guest "No" can be difficult because people usually don’t like being told "No."
Becky: When you tell a customer "no," you risk making them angry. So we’re going to give you some tips for achieving the same results in a polite way.
Eric: That’s right. The best way to start the process of telling a guest "No" is by apologizing first.
Becky: In general, saying "No" in English-speaking cultures is considered bad manners, so apologizing is the appropriate thing to do. Apologizing first makes the atmosphere friendly and lets the guest know you are concerned about their feelings.
Eric: Some good phrases to practice are "I’m sorry ma’am," "I apologize, sir," and "I’m sorry to say that…"
Becky: Another important step to telling a guest "no" is to explain why. In other words, do your best to offer the guest some explanation as to why you’re telling them no. For example, you could say "I am sorry sir, but this section is for hotel staff only."
Eric: The next step in saying "no" to a guest is to actually refuse a request. Sometimes you need to be direct and actually prohibit the guest from doing something or deny them something they are asking for.
Becky: That’s right. For example, a guest may ask "Could you take that pay-per-view charge off my bill?" You know you can’t do that, especially for no reason. So what do you do?
Eric: One of the most important things to remember here is to never say the word "no." Instead, try to phrase it so that the responsibility or the reason that you have to say no is because of some corporate or hotel rule.
Becky: That’s right. For example, you could say "I apologize, sir, but the corporate office has specifically prohibited us from doing that." If the guest is insistent, you can also offer to get your manager.

Outro

Eric: Well, that’s all for this lesson. Thanks for listening!
Becky: And we’ll see ya next time, bye!

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