Learn British English: telephone vocabulary

Simple help on phrasal verbs used in dealing with phone call…

Learn British English


Key preposition: “on”

Use “on” to describe when someone is talking “on” the telephone:

“I am on the telephone”.

“She can’t speak to you right now – she’s on the phone”.


British vocabulary and slang

“Blower” is a slang synonym for “telephone”.

“Lisa’s on the blower.” (Lisa wants to talk to you on the telephone.)

“Phone” = “Telephone”

British English calls handheld phones “mobile phones”, or just “mobiles”.

“Can I please have your mobile number?”

“Cell phone” is the American English term – not used in the UK.


Please see the visual below (via English is Fun) for phrasal verbs.

Telephone phrases via EIF

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