Grammar, Skills, Writing

50 Most Common Phrasal Verbs – Part 1

Phrasal verbs are part of the language that is natural, informal, and interesting (we can’t always guess their meaning!)...

Emi Ilievska Written by Emi Ilievska · 1 min read >
Phrasal Verbs English Class

Phrasal verbs are part of the language that is natural, informal, and interesting (we can’t always guess their meaning!) and a sure way to make our conversation more native-like. They might seem intimidating at first but we use many of them already without thinking about it, like ’wake up’, ’give up’, ’turn on/off’, ’run away’ and ’work out’. So, let’s dive into (start with enthusiasm) the most common ones!

1. Break down = (of a vehicle/machine) to stop working
My car broke down so I had to take a taxi.

2. Bring up = to raise a child
She was brought up in the countryside.

3. Bump into = to meet by chance
You’ll never guess who I bumped into this morning!

4. Call on = to visit
I’ll call on you this afternoon after work.

5. Call off = to cancel
If it rains tomorrow, we’ll have to call the game off.

6. Come down with = to be ill
I hope he isn’t coming down with the flu!

7. Cut it out = to stop doing something
Hey, cut it out! I can’t sleep with all that noise.

8. Drop by / in = to visit briefly
I’ll just drop by later to tell you the news.

9. Drop off = to take someone somewhere (esp. by car)
When I drop off the kids at school I’ll go shopping.

10. End up = to have a final result, often unexpected
I wanted to go to the park but ended up in a coffee shop instead.

11. Get along with = to be friendly
My cats and dogs get along with each other surprisingly well.

12. Get back to = to return with the answer/request later
I’ll get back to you once I check that information.

13. Get over = to overcome
I know it’s hard for him now but he’ll get over it.

14. Hang out = to spend a lot of time in a particular place / with someone
He likes to hang out with his playmates after school.

15. Hold on = to wait for a moment
Hold on; I’ll connect you with Mr. Johnson.

16. Look up = to find some information
I didn’t know the word so I looked it up in the dictionary.

17. Look after = to take care of someone
I need to look after my sister’s kids this afternoon.

18. Make up = to invent a story
I don’t believe a word you’re saying. You’re just making it up.

19. Pick up = to answer the phone
I called him yesterday but he didn’t pick up.

20. Put off = to postpone
We’ll have to put off that project for the time being.

21. Put up with = to tolerate
I won’t put up with such behavior.

22. Run out of = to use it completely
It seems we’ve run out of milk.

23. Show up = to appear
We waited for her for a while but she didn’t show up.

24. Take off = to remove a piece of clothes
Why don’t you take off your jacket? It’s warm in here.

25. Work out = to develop, esp. successfully
Don’t worry, things will work out.

Stay tuned for part 2 of the most commonly used phrasal verbs!

Written by Emi Ilievska
Emi is the Communications and Community Manager at English Forward. She has a Bachelors degree in e-Business and has been working in the eLearning industry for three years. She has previously managed social media for various brands from diverse industries, including health, technology, coaching, and education. Profile