Tips For Gracious Borrowing

“Neither a borrower nor a lender be.” That is according to Shakespeare’s Lord Polonius in Hamlet.  Who am I to contradict Shakespeare? But I think borrowing, if done graciously, can strengthen friendships and lead to willing lending.

A few tips to being a gracious borrower:

  1. Don’t even think about asking to borrow something irreplaceable or of great sentimental value.
  2. Ask politely; don’t assume it’s available to anyone.
  3. If the answer to your borrowing request is “No”, respect that answer. No arguing, begging, or guilt trips.
  4. Pick it up and return it yourself. Borrowing is one thing, expecting a delivery service is quite another.
  5. Pick it up at the arranged time.
  6. It is not yours to lend to someone else. No third parties.
  7.  Return it promptly.
  8. Return it in better condition than you borrowed it.
  9. Be sincere in your thanks. Depending on the item a thank you gift may be appropriate. Have borrowed clothing cleaned.
  10. Don’t be a frequent borrower. Occasionally is fine but making it a habit becomes tedious for the lender.
  11. Be a willing and gracious lender in return.

“Neither a borrower nor a lender be;

For loan oft loses both itself and friend,

And borrowing dulls the edge of husbandry.”

Do you think gracious borrowing would ease the concerns of Lord Polonius?

Well, OK then, here. You can borrow them. Just don't walk in them!

About etiquetteottawa

Founder and Owner of the Protocol School Of Ottawa
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2 Responses to Tips For Gracious Borrowing

  1. karenhickman says:

    Suzanne, this is good advice. Also, if you break something or ruin it, one must be prepared to replace the item or have it fixed.

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