First of all I am sorry if this is wrong forum for this question.

I have come in a situation recently where I was needed to write a mail to a foreign company. And as you probably noticed by now my English is bad so I was wondering, is it unprofessional to say

(a) Excuse my English
(b) Sorry for my English

at the end of an e-mail?

closed as primarily opinion-based by user66974, RegDwigнt Nov 4 '14 at 12:16

Many good questions generate some degree of opinion based on expert experience, but answers to this question will tend to be almost entirely based on opinions, rather than facts, references, or specific expertise. If this question can be reworded to fit the rules in the help center, please edit the question.

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    You could say: "I apologize for not being word-perfect in English" but this might conflict with the style of your letter, and the reader might think: "The letter was fine, why is he pointing out he's made mistakes or errors?" It's a bit of a double-edged sword. – Mari-Lou A Nov 4 '14 at 9:26
  • I agree with Mari-Lou's comment. Your English may not be perfect but, as far as we can see from the few words in your question, it is not poor. As a lot of correspondence in English is written by non-natives speakers nowadays, people do not expect perfection in language, and do not normally think any the worse of people who do not write perfect English. Of course, if you are sending such things as an important legal document, technical instructions or marketing material to promote your company/product, then don't risk poor English; get your material professionally translated into English. – tunny Nov 4 '14 at 9:44
  • For works better with something one has done, or such. About may be a better choice in this case: Sorry about my (poor) English. Why not be more explicit and include the most important part, "poor"? – Kris Nov 4 '14 at 9:53
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    By say "poor" here, one is only showing modesty and not making some kind of a confession or speaking an actual fact. As such it's fine to say so. – Kris Nov 4 '14 at 9:54
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    I would actually put such a remark at the )beginning of the email, not at the end. Putting it at the beginning prepares the reader for not-perfect English, and can lead to a "that wasn't too bad" or "good he warned me" reaction. Putting it at the end may lead to a "what does he mean" or "yeah, now he tells me" reaction. – oerkelens Nov 4 '14 at 10:16

As a UK company we receive thousands of emails and letters every day from foreign companies selling services. The inclusion of "excuse my English" or "sorry for my English" would normally lead to an email or letter being immediately disregarded as spam due to the sheer amount of communications we receive that say this and then try to sell sub-standard services. This isn't really a comment regarding grammar but I feel it may answer your question better.

  • If the sentence was phrased differently, i.e., apologize, would it make any difference to your spam filters? – Mari-Lou A Nov 4 '14 at 12:33
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    In terms of human spam filtering I would say no, it is the same as saying "sorry my service isn't very good" when starting a description of your service. In the context that this question is asked I would say the only solution is for the email to be written in good enough English that there is need to apologise in the first place. – Mark Farnell Nov 4 '14 at 14:02

I would say, "English is not my mother tongue; please excuse any errors on my part."

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