Take the 2-minute tour ×
Chinese Language Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for students, teachers, and linguists wanting to discuss the finer points of the Chinese language. It's 100% free, no registration required.

In the context of phone conversations with vendors I often default to either:

  • 我想问一下…
  • 请问…

I'm looking for a possibly more appropriate way to address someone in this context. Would it be appropriate to say any of the following?

  • 我想查询您…
  • 我想询问您…
share|improve this question
add comment

1 Answer

up vote 5 down vote accepted

Would it be appropriate to say any of the following?

我想查询您…

This usage is wrong. 查询 should be followed by the object being asked for, not the person who is being asked. The correct usages are

  • 我想查询[sth]。
  • 我想向[sb]查询[sth]。

Example:

  • 我想(向您)查询从北京到上海的机票价格。

我想询问您…

This one is correct. 询问 can be used in three ways:

  • 我想询问[sth]
  • 我想询问[sb][sth]
  • 我想向[sb]询问[sth]

Example:

  • 我想询问从北京到上海的机票价格。
  • 我想询问您从北京到上海的机票价格。
  • 我想向您询问从北京到上海的机票价格。

Both of them are formal but never too formal to use in daily conversations; I use them from time to time when talking to a service personnel, especially when over the phone.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.