Do Americans always say "It's half after three" when reading a clock?
I don't know why my conversation book mentions only
"It's half past three" and does not indicate it is British English.
Last edited by wotcha; 12-Jan-2012 at 14:35.
We do say "it's a quarter past" or "it's a quarter after" to mean (for example) 3:15. I use both, interchangealy.
We also say "I's a quarter to" or "it's a quarter of" to mean (for example) 2:45.
But for 3:30, it's not "half after."
It's a quarter past 3 means 3:15
It's a quarter after 3 also means 3:15.
It's half past 3 means 3:30
It's a quarter of 3 means 2:45
It's a quarter to 3 means 2:45.
We also often drop the hour.
A: I'll pick you up at 3.
B: Could you make it a quarter of? We hope to finish early today.
A: Can you pick me up at 3?
B: I probably won't be able to get there until quarter after.
A: No problem.I'll wait.
I'm not a teacher, but I write for a living. Please don't ask me about 2nd conditionals, but I'm a safe bet for what reads well in (American) English.
BrE speakers say "half past three" or "three_thirty".
I think "three-thirty" would be the most common in AmE. Digital clocks.
I've heard people in BrE say "Half eight" to mean "eight-thirty." I don't know how common that is.