25 Ways To Use The Magic English Verb ‘Get’

‘Get’ in the English language is one of those seemingly magical words that a lot of people think can be used in almost any situation. Indeed it is a frequently used word on it’s own as well as with other words. Most of the time, this word is used in a phrasal verb which is a combination of two or more words, usually a verb + a preposition. One phrasal verb can have several different meanings and normally has a different meaning compared to when the two words are separated, for example:

get on / get out

So in the example above, to ‘get on’ can mean to enter a bus, train, tram, plane etc and to ‘get out’ means the same thing when you arrive at your destination, eg:

I get on the bus every morning at 8am.

I get out of the bus when it arrives at the bus stop near my office.

However, the words ‘on’ and ‘off’ have completely different meanings altogether, for example:

The CD player is now ‘on’.

The TV is ‘off’.  

So why do we need to learn phrasal verbs? Well, it’s because English is simply full of them in both written and spoken English and the more you can include them in your repertoire, the more you will come across as a fluent English speaker. So, take a look below at some of the most commonly used phrasal verbs with the magical word ‘get’:

Elementary Use

Phrasal Verb Meaning Example
get dark not a lot of light It is getting dark, let’s go inside.
get better your health is improving I was ill last week but I am getting better now.
get tired you feel you want to sleep I always get tired at 10pm so I always go to bed then.
get wet to be damp or soaked with water I always get wet in Holland, it rains so much.
get on to enter a train, tram, bus, plane I love to get on trains.
get a taxi to secure the services of a taxi for transportation Let’s get a taxi so we can get home faster.
get home to arrive or to return home We always get home at 5:30pm after work.
Showing 1 to 7 of 7 entries
Pre Intermediate Use
Phrasal Verb Meaning Example
to get married / divorced the time when two people come together as husband and wife, or husband and husband or wife and wife at a wedding He wants to get married to Isabelle.
get dressed / undressed to put on your clothes I get dressed after my shower.
get changed to change your clothes I am so hot I need to get changed into my shorts.
to get lost to lose your way When I went to Venice, I got lost so many times.
to get rid of to throw something away I am moving house next month, so I need to get rid of all my old stuff.
Showing 1 to 5 of 5 entries
Upper Intermediate / Advanced
Phrasal Verb Meaning Example
get at reach, find I hope the board will get at the truth.
get away with do something wrong without being caught The thieves got away with a diamond ring and an expensive painting.
get behind fail to produce something at the right/correct time I don’t know if I can come tonight, I have got behind with my work.
get by manage (financially) We could never get by on only one salary.
get down to be depressed The non-stop rain in the Netherlands really gets me down.
get down to give serious attention to something It is now time for you to get down to work.
get on manage Do you think we will get on without you when you go on vacation?
get on advance, develop Richard is getting on really well with his university studies.
get out of avoid a responsibility I am going to try and get out of going to the party on Saturday, I really don’t want to go.
get over recover from My mother is getting over a really bad flu.
get round spread All the gossip will sooner or later get around.
get through come to a successful end It was such a relief that I managed to get through my final exam!
get up to to do (something especially bad) They are very quiet at the moment, I wonder what they are getting up to?
Showing 1 to 13 of 13 entries

So as you can see, the English verb ‘get’ is used in so many different ways. If you would like to sound more fluent in English and more like a native English speaker, then you should use as many of these as possible from the list above.

Whether you just learn one phrasal verb at a time and keep using it over and over again doesn’t matter. The time will feel right when you become more comfortable and decide to learn and include another one into your vocabulary, so don’t worry.



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