L'hôtel

How to ask politely for something


Est-ce qu'il serait possible de ... ?
Serait-il possible de ... ?
Pourriez-vous ... ?


The phrases serait-il possible de... ? (would it be possible to) and pourriez-vous ...? are used for making particularly polite requests in French.

Serait-il possible d'avoir une serviette supplémentaire?
Would it be possible to have an extra towel?

This form is called the conditional. Il serait is from the verb être (to be) and vous pourriez is from pouvoir (to be able).

The verb endings for the conditional tense are :

je -ais nous -ions
tu -ais vous -iez
il/elle/on -ait ils/elles -aient.

These endings are usually added to the infinitive of the verb:


Préférer becomes vous préféreriez ? (would you prefer?)


But if the infinitive ends in -re, drop the final 'e':


Dire becomes je dirais, (I would say).


There are a few irregular verbs such as je serais (I would be) and je pourrais (I could), but the endings are still the same.


A tip! The letter before the ending is always an 'r'.

Serait-il possible de manger ici ce soir ?
Would it be possible to eat here tonight?
 
Pourriez-vous nous garder nos bagages jusqu'à ce soir ?
Could you keep our luggage till this evening?

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