• Daniel Bullock

20 tips on how to agree in English | Different ways to say I agree

Updated: Mar 18

20 tips on how to agree, マンツーマンレッスン, 英語
We agree!

Do you want to sound like an advanced English speaker? How do you agree more politely? Here are some tips to help you get there!

First, it is a good idea to ask why we need “agreement” language. Simply, it helps us communicate smoothly with others. It is a life skill. If you do not respond when someone makes a comment, such as "I like that flavour of ice cream", then it can sound like you are not interested in what the person is saying. It's a good way to kill a conversation! This leads us into one of the pitfalls, or problems that some English language students run into - some learners don't know what to say in order to agree, naturally.

For example:

Jim: Doughnuts are delicious!

Dave: I know.

Just saying “I know” is not enough in this situation.

A student I used to teach would often say just “ I know”. He needed some more vocabulary as he ended up sounding like a parrot, disinterested and even perhaps a little condescending! These are just some of the reasons why it is a good idea to learn a big variety of phrases to show agreement. You need to know how to roughly judge what agreement phrase to use in each particular situation. The more agreement phrases you know, the better you will be able to respond when you are agreeing with someone.

Here are 20 tips on how to agree in English, starting with short phrases and building up:

1. Yep/Yeah!

2. Right

3. I think so too

4. I totally agree

5. This is true

6. You’re so right

7. You’re dead right (used to show strong agreement in a casual way)

8. That is so true!

9. That gets my vote

10. You’re not wrong

11. I feel that way too

12. I’m with you on that

13. You read (RED) my mind

14. I couldn’t agree with you more

15. You hit the nail on the head there!

How do you agree politely? Here are some more formal expressions:

16. I concur

17. I’m with you on that

18. We’re in accord

19. I’m in agreement with you

20. We are on the same page

Here are some examples of agreement

A: Our Boss is really moody.

B: Yep! I wish he would get transferred out!

A: We need to speak to our neighbour about the noise.

B: You’re so right, his behaviour is unbelievable! I've never heard such loud music in my entire life!

A: Would you like to try Mexican food this weekend?

B: You read my mind! I’m really in the mood for an extra-spicy Burrito!

A: I think the merger should happen.

B: We’re in accord, then. The two companies flourish together.

A: I feel that the smartphone market has become somewhat saturated.

B: I’m with you on that. We need to find an alternative revenue stream.

Why do we have so many phrases in English to show agreement?

As mentioned above, it helps us communicate more smoothly. But there is another reason why it is important to mix our vocabulary up. If you keep saying the same word, it can get boring for the listener. Keep your English fresh, and sound more natural, by using the above ways to show agreement.

What is a common mistake?

An error some English learners make is to think that it is okay to use the same agreement phrase for most situations. Sometimes the phrase is not suitable for the scenario.

For example:

Husband: I think we should put all of our money into stocks.

Wife: Yep.

Nope! That is too small of a word for such a BIG decision! That is unless this is a conversation that the husband and wife have had over and over again, so the agreement isn’t such a big deal, kind of like old news. When the same opinion is repeated over and over, “yep” is actually a good choice of words! In this situation though, where it is a new opinion or idea, a more natural way to agree is like this:

Husband: I think we should put all of our money into stocks.

Wife: I feel that way too. It might be a good idea to start doing some research.

Which expression should I choose?

When you are speaking you need to decide on the weight of the phrase you use. Try expressions like “yep”, “right” and “you’re not wrong” for light situations, such as giving opinions on food, music, movies, the weather etc.

For example:

A: It’s really hot today!

B: Yep!

Longer expressions are usually more natural for more serious topics. Or for topics that you have a strong opinion about. Try expressions like “I feel that way too”, “you hit the nail on the head there” and “that is so true”

Here is another example:

A: I think the biggest problem with Johnny is his attitude, he’s isn’t respectful enough.

B: You hit the nail on the head there! He has to think more about how he talks to people.

Bonus tip!

Some of these agreement phrases can be turned into questions to actually ask for agreement. Here are a few examples:

1. I agree becomes a question...

A: Wouldn’t you agree that it’s a bad idea to smoke?

B: Yeah, you’re probably right. It’s too difficult to stop, though!

2. We are on the same page becomes a question...

A: We’re on the same page, aren’t we?

B: Absolutely!

3. I concur becomes a question...

A: Would you concur?

B: Yes, I think the new sales plan is fantastic!

This also has the added benefit of reusing the words and expressions you already know, meaning that you will be able to better remember them. The more you use a word, the better it sticks in your mind.

The choice is up to you

When you are deciding on how to agree in English, think about the weight of the topic – is it a casual one? If so, use expressions like “I totally agree” or “you’re dead right” And when it is a formal, serious or business type of situation, phrases such as “ I concur” or “we are in accord” can be used.

Thanks for reading this post – these are just a few examples of how to agree – there are lots more to discover! Have fun and experiment with using them. I’m sure that with some time, you will be able to develop a natural feel for which expression fit naturally into each situation.

Cheers and have a great day!