Speak English Around Town » LESSON 8 - Ordering Lunch to Go

Ordering Lunch to Go

Joe goes to Angelo's Sandwich Shop to get a sandwich. After speaking with Jim, the clerk, he decides on the meal deal.

Tim: Welcome to Angelo's. What can I get for you?

Joe: A chicken salad sandwich.

Tim: For here or to go?

Joe: To go.

Tim: Would you like that on white, wheat, or pumpernickel?

Joe: What's pumpernickel?

Tim: It's a dark brown bread, similar to rye bread.

Joe: Let me try that.

Tim: And would you like that with mustard, mayonnaise, or oil?

Joe: Mustard. But please go light on it.

Tim: Would you like to make that a meal deal? Our special this month is a sandwich, an order of French fries, and a large soda for $6.99.

Joe: I'm going to pass on that. But I'd like a side order of fries.

Tim: Your total comes to $6.99.

Joe: On second thought, I will take you up on that meal deal.

Tim: Sure, then you'll get a soda at no extra charge. That'll be $6.99.

Joe: Sorry, but I've only got a $100 bill.

Tim: No worries. We can break it.

  • at no extra charge
    free with a purchase; for no added fee
    Example: Bob and Susan will only stay at hotels that let them bring along their dog at no extra charge.
  • (to) break
    to make small change
    Example: Can you break a $50 bill? I don't have anything smaller.
  • For here or to go?
    Do you want to eat in the restaurant or take the food with you?
    Example: "For here or to go?" - "For here, please."
  • (to) go light on
    to put on just a small amount
    Example: Please go light on the mayonnaise.
  • meal deal
    a promotion in which several food items are sold together at a good price
    Example: If you' re hungry, I recommend the meal deal. You get a sandwich, soup, and drink for just $8.99.
  • no worries
    don't worry about it; that's fine
    Example: "There's a 45-minute wait to get a table." - "No worries. We'll just order our food to go."
  • on second thought
    I changed my mind
    Example: I'm not going to order dessert. On second thought, the chocolate lava cake sounds delicious. I'm going to order that.
  • (to) pass on
    to say no to; to reject
    Example: I'm going to pass on dessert. I'm stuffed.
  • side order
    a smaller dish served with the main course
    Example: I'd like a side order of onion rings with my hamburger.
  • (to) take you up on
    to accept your offer
    Example: "You're inviting me to lunch today? I'll take you up on that.
  • What can I get for you?
    What would you like to order?
    Example: "What can I get for you?" -"I'd like the meal deal."
  • your total comes to
    the bill is; the amount you owe is
    Example: "Your total comes to $12.89."
Practice the Expressions

Fill in the blanks using the following expressions:

  • your total comes to
  • at no extra charge
  • go light on it
  • side order
  • what can I get for you
  • for here or to go
  • pass on
  • on second thought
  • no worries
  • meal deal
  • Cashier: Welcome to Dan's Sandwich Shop. (1)_____ ?
  • Sandra: What does the (2)_____ come with?
  • Cashier: A sandwich, your choice of soup or salad, a drink, and a cookie.
  • Sandra: I'm going to (3)_____ that. It sounds like too much food. I'll take a turkey sandwich with a (4)_____ of French fries.
  • Cashier: Mustard or mayonnaise on the sandwich?
  • Sandra: Mustard, but (5)_____ .
  • Cashier: Is this ( 6)_____ ?
  • Sandra: To go. (7)_____ , I'll have a salad instead of the sandwich.
  • Cashier: (8)_____ . I'll just go ahead and change that. I'm going to include a cookie (9)_____ . (10)_____ $8.50.
Answer Key
Practice The Expressions
  1. What can I get for you
  2. meal deal
  3. pass on
  4. side order
  5. go light on it
  6. for here or to go
  7. On second thought
  8. No worries
  9. at no extra charge
  10. Your total comes to
Answer Key
Language Lens: "Polite" Would

Use "would + like" to make polite requests or to ask a question in a polite way. The contracted form of would is 'd. When speaking, you'll usually use the contracted forms (I'd, you'd, he'd, we'd) instead of the full forms (I would, you would, he would, we would).

I'd like another cup of coffee, please.
I'd like another few days to finish the proposal.
We'd like another bottle of wine.
We'd like a room with a view.

Polite questions:
Would you* like some more coffee? (You could also say, "Do you want some more coffee?" but using "would" makes the question more polite).
Would you like to stay for dinner? (You could also say, "Do you want to stay for dinner?" but again, using "would" makes it more polite).
Would you like some help with your luggage?

* Note that "would you" is often pronounced as one word: wouldja.

Ask "wouldn't you like" if you want a positive response:
Wouldn't you like to stay for dinner? (This sounds more like you really do want someone to stay rather than just asking, "Would you like to stay for dinner?").
Wouldn't you like another cookie? (You're encouraging the person to go ahead and take another one).

Quick Quiz

PART A: Turn the following into polite requests using "'d like" (the contracted form of "would like")

Example: I want a ride to the movies tonight.
Answer: I'd like a ride to the movies tonight.

  1. I want that report on my desk by 5 o'clock.
  2. I want a cup of coffee.
  3. I want to leave early on Friday.
  4. I need another pillow.
  5. Give me some help with this project.

PART B: Form questions based on these situations using "would you like"

Example: Your wife says she has no time to cook dinner tonight.
Answer: Would you like me to cook dinner tonight?

  1. Your friend keeps looking at his empty coffee cup and then at the full pot of coffee on your counter.
  2. Your neighbor tells you that her car is in the repair shop and she has no way to get to work tomorrow.
  3. Your sister calls to tell you that her babysitter just canceled and she has nobody to look after her kids tonight.
  4. It's 11 a.m. You're leaving the office. Your boss asks where you're going. You answer, "To get coffee at Starbucks." He replies, "I love their cappuccinos."
  5. Your friend asks what you're doing to celebrate Thanksgiving. You say you're having a dinner at your house. You ask what she's doing, and she says, "I have no plans."
Answer Key
Part A
  1. I'd like that report on my desk by 5 o'clock.
  2. I'd like a cup of coffee.
  3. I'd like to leave early on Friday.
  4. I'd like another pillow.
  5. I'd like some help with this project.
Part B
  1. Would you like another cup of coffee? OR: Would you like some more coffee?
  2. Would you like a ride to work tomorrow? OR: Would you like me to give you a ride to work tomorrow?
  3. Would you like me to look after your kids tonight? OR: Would you like me to babysit tonight?
  4. Would you like me to get you a cappuccino? OR: Would you like me to bring you back a cappuccino?
  5. Would you like to come here for Thanksgiving? OR: Would you like to come to my (or our) house for Thanksgiving?
Answer Key
Favorite Books

If you already speak some English and now would like to speak more like a native, “Speak English Like an American” will help you. One of the keys to speaking like a native is the ability to use and understand casual expressions, or idioms. American English is full of idioms. Speak English Like an American will help you understand and use idioms better. It contains over 300 of today's most common idioms.

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