6

In the two cases below, what is the host doing to the guest?

First example: When you go to someone's home for dinner, after the party, the host walks you out and says goodbye in the street rather than in the living room. The host does this out of respect for his guest.

Second example: If you go to another city and stay with a friend for a few days, when you are leaving, they accompany you to the airport or the train station instead of parting at their own doorstep. The host's intention is to show his caring for the guest.

What are acts like these two examples called? I've come across "escort" and "convoy", but these two mean travelling with someone to protect them which implies a different intention. In my first language there is a specific verb for this act. I was wondering if there is an equivalent phrase or word in English or not.

  • Are you looking for a word that describes the mentioned actions exclusively when they are done for the sole purpose of "showing respect towards the guest"? – O. R. Mapper Apr 21 '15 at 19:53
  • Aside from it being a sign of respect of caring, I would say it's even more a sign of hospitality. – Leon van Noord Apr 22 '15 at 9:02
22

This is known as seeing someone to < somewhere >

The host saw his guest to the door

His friend saw him to the airport.

to see out : 1. To escort some visitor to an exit. The butler saw out the visitors. Will you please see Dr. Smith out? 1

If the seeing out was exceptional you can add in all the way to:

He saw his friend all the way to the train station.


1 The American Heritage® Dictionary of Phrasal Verbs. Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.

  • 2
    You can also use walk someone somewhere e.g. "I'll walk you to your door", "He walked her home". It's less broadly applicable (it wouldn't apply in the host seeing the guest to the door of his own home, for example), but I'm having trouble pinning down exactly when it does and does not apply. – starsplusplus Apr 21 '15 at 11:43
  • @starsplusplus: My native ear says you can only "walk" someone to a moderately distant destination, particularly one which might be inconvenient for the walker. It's a slightly higher level of courtesy. – Kevin Apr 21 '15 at 20:20
  • "I'll walk you to the door" or "I'll walk you out" are things I say in my own house...might have something to do with the fact that my main living/entertaining area is at the back of the house and their is a hallway up to the front door. "See you out" in this instance would sound awkwardly formal. – msouth Apr 22 '15 at 12:44
14

see someone off

Accompany a person who is leaving to their point of departure:

they came to the station to see him off

[OD]

6

Escort is actually an appropriate word for this. According to Wiktionary, escort as a verb means: (emphasis mine)

To attend to in order to guard and protect; to accompany as a safeguard; to give honorable or ceremonious attendance to

You could also use accompany.

  • "Escort" has a negative connotation, as it is often used in the sense of being led by a police officer, etc. – Hot Licks Apr 21 '15 at 12:21
  • 4
    @HotLicks Perhaps "being escorted" has negative connotations, e.g. "being escorted from the premises" which is a polite way of saying "getting kicked out [for breaking the rules]". But "an escort" or "to escort" typically suggest the person being escorted is important, not in trouble. At any rate, the asker makes no mention of the importance of negativity or positivity. – talrnu Apr 21 '15 at 15:12
  • Plus, this is actually the best answer so far as it's the only one that provides a single-word solution. And it includes two of them (accompany was my first thought). – talrnu Apr 21 '15 at 15:16
4

In the first case the host might say: I will see you out. Or the visitor might say I will see myself out and leave without the host walking them out. Walking someone out is another option.

In the second escorting someone to the airport or taking or bringing them to the airport can be used.

1

These are all very good answers. You may also want to consider using:

Show

"I will show you to the door"

"Doug, will you please show our guests out?"

This is just another example. From my understanding (and depending on the context), showing someone out may sound somewhat less polite as opposed to seeing someone out.

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