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In one of my previous jobs, I had a co-worker who ended all of her emails to me that way. Kinda set my teeth on edge.

Richard Ames

I agree. "Please advise" is excellent. My other favorite is the word "accordingly," used instead of "therefore" or god forbid,(gulp)"hence." ("Accordingly, the ball is in your court. Please advise.")

Trevor Hopkins

I've used "Please advise" for years but recently the allmighty MS' grammar check doesn't like to see it in emails. I usually use it when sending one email with more than one question.


What do you think?
Please advise accordingly.


For an attorney I would think please advise could make sense.

But I have a coworker who uses this signoff to death, and she is the laughing stock of the office for it.

When you get to the level of "Dear Everyone, I want to get Joe a going away cake. I am not sure if chocolate or vanilla frosting is better. Please advise" you know you've gone too far.


I also have a distant coworker who ends every one of her emails with 'Please Advise' and she is indeed the laughing stock of our office. We've even thought about getting T-shirts that say 'Please Advise' =)


I love 'please advise' and use it all the time. It absolutely conveys to my boss (I am an executive secretary) that I must have his direction before I can proceed. After reading these postings, I might start adding 'accordingly' -- need to mull that one over in my mind a bit! Thanks JO

anonymous coward

I absolutely hate this phrase. It kills me when people use it. It usually is used as a passive aggresive way to drop the ball in your lap. How about you come out and ask for help? Or state what your real question is. When people use this, they expect you to figure out their problem for them.

I have several Project Managers that use this on a daily basis. I tend to ignore them.


I like this frase but I do not overuse it (well, IMHO!) :)
As someone mentioned here, starting a couple of years ago MS' grammar checker does not like it but perfectly accepts "Please, adviCe." Could some of the English speakers briefly explain which grammar rule is in use here?


I love it! Please advise.. This sums it up nicely.


I use it sparingly, usually when I'm trying to get someone to do something that they should have done in the first place and they're the only ones that can do it, but I'm not yet to the level of going ballastic. ;-)


I answer customer support e-mails and the phrase drives me crazy, I don't know why. I read it at least 50 times a day, and I instantly lose respect for the person who says it. A personal bias, I admit. I still do my best to help, of course.


As an ebay seller, I come across this phrase fairly often. The type of people who use it seem overwhelmingly to be the type who have no idea how to construct a rational sentence other than to use big fancy technical words. They use phrases like "I am concerned as to why..." Concise writing is an alien concept to them. I just laugh at them and write a quick 1 sentence reply.


I am a web programmer for a small company so I end up doing support too. Like Flick above, a more and more frustrating part of my job entails answering customer emails about problems with the website that often end in "please advise". This drives me nuts and makes me want to respond with "I advise you not to use computers".

For example, "Can't log on. Please advise."

Now, I think this is fine in the legal world where people use words like 'heretofore' and 'to wit'. However, in general use, I group it with "as to" and I think it makes you sound like a pompous asshole.

Basically, there is no need (it's not a telegram and they don't charge by the word), it's borderline rude (what about thanks or sincerely?), and it doesn't make you sound more intelligent.

that's just my opinion. yes, i found this site on a google search on "please advise" because i was fed up with seeing it today and was curious about the internet had to say about it.

Please don't advise.


i like to use it, instead of writing a long sentence suggesting different options, it just conveys the message that....i am looking for directions from the higher beings......since its not my call....and i cannot proceed without a decision....

its also a very good diplomatic way to coerce some direction when you are in tight spot.....(you dont want to reveal your cards....by suggestions options....)


So, any final advice on why it is OK to adviCe while it is NOT OK to adviSe ?

(MS' grammar)

Please advise


‘Advise’ is a verb.
‘Advice’ is a noun.

'Please advise,' is correct and the spell check in MS WORD is wrong.

If you think of how the words are pronounced you will not have a problem: ‘Advice’ rhymes with the word nice and ‘advise’ rhymes with the word size. The "C" in advice has a "S" sound, and the "S" in advise has a "Z" sound.


I found myself using this phrase often and felt that the person on the other end was some how miffed by my using it. It didn’t make sense to me until reading some of the posts. I can’t wait to use it even more.


I also found this site via Google. It is a terrible, terrible phrase. I deeply hate seeing this in a note. Tend to ignore the person(s) that over use.


Nice blog you got going! I got here using Google searching for "Please advise." I am looking for the proper use of the statement. It is relevant to whom is being directed. If the case is co-worker to co-worker is a bad practice because it's used for delegating work. On the other hand, if it is used to address a higher authority it's ok, for sake of guidance.

I use it rarely only when I need approval before taking action on something out of my league.


Thanks for the blog, I was using google to search for the correct spelling and found this. Thanks for clearing it up!


I, too, got here by a websearch. I just used "please advise" in an e-mail and wanted to see what others had to say. This is great! Thanks to the internet, we can find something about anything, and this blog has actually made it relevant.

Ray nailed it on the head, as far as usage goes.


What started out as just a lonely ?, multiplied into ???????, was abducted by aliens and replaced with their less than perfect clone of the original "Please Advise." Why don't we take it to the next level "PLEASE ADVISE???????" I bet you didn't even see the capital letters coming did you?


i too googled this, because "please advise" is popping up all over my company. it's like one moron used it, and now everyone thinks it is hip to "please advise" the end of EVERY email. i love the example above about deciding icing on a cake, and also how someone is tempted to say "i advise you not to use a computer." simply hysterical. "please advise" is the new "cheers". remember that one, when everyone suddenly turned british?


I'm one of those who uses: "Please advise" all the time. I understand some people's reaction and I am sorry if that upset's some of you. Maybe because I was brought up in both French & English, but in French Advise is not as harsh as you guys make it sounds in English. In French it's stating: please give me directions, or answers to make a wise decision.

I chuckled at some of your reactions, not as a lack of respect but as general feeling of your frustration. I almost wanted to stop using it, but then I saw a comment as to how someone saw it and I felt the same, I figure it was OK.

I just wanted to give you my opinion of someone who uses this term often in my line of work which is: Administrative Assistant. Hey, I wonder if you guys where talking about me. Hummmmm. Maybe I will get the famous T-Shirt. Anyway, Please Advise if this is OK.

Sorry, I did it again.

Oh by the way, since I went into Word to spell check my text here, I notice that if I've put a capital A on Advise, Word seems to accept it. + I made sure in Tools/Option under: Spelling, there was no Check Mark under: Ignore Uppercase and it still worked. So that is one way, Word will accept: Please Advise. Let me know what you think and please don't be offended by my comments, it wasn't my intention. I use a sense of humour to speak with strangers. I am shy, so this is a mechanism of mine.

Best regards to all, Nancy

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