Learning English. Learn English with an English Vocabulary Phrase Lesson: The Trouble with Public Signs, Some Funny Hotel Sign Errors
Funny Hotel Signs
We all learn from our mistakes. Here is an opportunity to learn from other people’s mistakes.
The following is a list of public signs from all around the world. They are supposedly authentic, though we have no way to verify this fact. In any case, whoever wrote these was either a comedian, or had difficulty with English.
It is easy enough to understand the message that each sign is trying to convey. However, the message that each sign really does convey is quite different, and quite hilarious.
1) In a Paris hotel elevator: Please leave your values at the front desk.”
The sign here is undoubtedly trying to say, “Please leave your valuables at the desk”. Valuables are expensive personal objects like a watch or jewelry. They risk being stolen if left unprotected in a hotel room. Instead, the sign uses the word values, which are things people believe to be important in life (e.g. honesty, friendship, family or hard work).
Needless to say, it would be quite difficult to leave values at a front desk.
2) In a Yugoslavian Hotel: “The flattening of underwear with pleasure is the job of the chambermaid.”
The sign here is trying to say, “The chambermaid will iron underwear upon request”.
Instead, the sign uses the word flattening, which is not proper in this context. Plus, the sign adds that the chambermaid will flatten (iron) underwear with pleasure. In English, the only time you use the word pleasure and underwear together is when talking about hanky-panky (sexual play).
3) In a Japanese hotel: “You are invited to take advantage of the chambermaid.”
The sign here is trying to say, “Feel free to take advantage of our chamber-cleaning service”.
Instead, the sign says to take advantage of the chambermaid. To take advantage of someone is often used in a sexual context (e.g. The man took advantage of the women while she was drunk).
4) On the menu of a Swiss restaurant: “Our wines leave you nothing to hope for.”
The sign here is trying to say, “Our wines take away your sorrows”. In other words, the wine will help you relax and forget about your problems.
Instead, the sign says that the wine leaves you nothing to hope for, which is a very depressing feeling.
5) Outside a Hong Kong tailor shop: “Ladies may have a fit upstairs.”
The sign here is trying to say, “Ladies may use the fitting room upstairs”
A fitting room, or changing room, is where you can try on clothes to see if it fits (before buying them).
6) Advertisement for donkey rides in Thailand: “Would you like to ride on your own ass?”
The sign here is trying to say, “Would you like to ride a donkey?”
A donkey can also, in some cases, be called an ass.
However, the sign asks if one would like to ride on their own ass. When used like this, the word ass can also mean one’s behind (bum/butt/rear-end). It sounds rather uncomfortable, wouldn’t you say?
7) In a Swiss mountain inn: “Special today - no ice cream”
The sign here is trying to say, “Sorry - no ice cream today”. Top
Instead, the sign puts Special today. At a restaurant, a special usually announces a good offer (e.g. Special today- ice cream half price). The fact that there is no ice cream is not a special at all.
8) In a Bangkok dry cleaners: “Drop your trousers here for best results.”
Here is some more hanky-panky talk. The sign here is trying to say, “Please leave your trousers in the drop-off”. A drop-off is a small area used for exactly that purpose: dropping off something.
Instead, the sign uses the expression Drop your trousers, which is an expression you would use for someone who takes his trousers off before engaging in sexual play.
9) In a hotel in Athens: “Visitors are expected to complain at the office between the hours of 9 and 11am daily.”
The sign here is trying to say, “The office will gladly receive any complaints by visitors between 9 and 11am daily.”
Instead, the sign states that the visitors are expected to complain (to expect means to think that something will happen). If the hotel does in fact expect its visitors to complain, it is not a very good hotel at all.
10) In an advertisement by a Hong Kong dentist: “Teeth extracted by the latest Methodists.”
The sign here is trying to say, “Teeth extracted by the latest methods”.
Instead, the sign uses the word Methodists. This is very funny, because Methodists are members of the Methodist Church, and have absolutely no relation to the extraction of teeth.
Have fun and learn lots & Make sure that if you get in to the hotel business to have someone proofread your signs! Top
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