“Hey what are you up to later on?” You’ll hear this phrase a lot in friendly conversation, but what does it mean?
It’s Saturday afternoon and Simona calls up Petr and asks:
– “Hey Petr, listen, I was just wondering – what are you up to later?”
– “Not much, I’ve just got to finish an essay then I’m done for the day. What’s up?”
– “Well, I’m holding two tickets to the Taylor Swift metal concert – want to come?!”
As Simona holds her breath and hopes that Petr will say ‘yes’, he takes a few moments to realise that “what are you up to” simply means:
“What are you doing?”
It’s a common small talk phrase which we use when asking what our friends are doing, and often it’s used before we ask someone if they’re free to go out somewhere.
So if you want to find out what you’re friends are doing, you can ask them:
– “What are you up to now – are you free for a drink?”
– “What are you up to tonight? Let’s grab a drink somewhere..”
You can also use ‘get up to’:
“What are you getting up to later?”
As well, you can ask them how their weekend was:
– “What did you get up to at the weekend?”
– “Did you get up to much last night?”
And if you haven’t seen a friend for a while, you can use the present perfect to ask what they’ve been doing since you last met:
– “Have you been up to much lately?” or “Been up to much lately?”
– “It’s been ages since I saw you – what have you been up to?!”
Small talk phrases
“It’s been ages since I saw you!
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Francisco Javier says
I like it (a “Like” button would be good here).