Different Ways To Say “I’m Sorry”
- I can’t apologize enough.
- Please accept my sincerest apologies.
- I am at fault and take full responsibility.
- Please forgive me.
- I’m regretful.
Saying “I’m Sorry”
Being human means making mistakes. Making mistakes means having to apologize. Sometimes, though, saying I’m sorry just isn’t enough.
It is especially difficult to apologize when you don’t have the right words to express your regret. The list of I’m sorry synonyms below can help, whether your apology is formal or casual.
“I’m Sorry” Synonyms
When it comes to mistakes, there are minor missteps and then there are major inconveniences. Both require entirely different types of apologies. Plus, the way you apologize differs based on if you’re talking to your boss at work or your friends at a gathering.
That being said, below you’ll find formal synonyms for I’m sorry, but also casual phrases you can use instead.
Formal “Sorry” Synonyms
1. I apologize.
Consider this a direct, more formal synonym of “I’m sorry.” It’s quite versatile in the sense that it can be used for both small and big mistakes.
I apologize for being late. I can assure you it won’t happen again.
Another similar synonym is my apologies.
My apologies for being late. I can assure you it won’t happen again.
2. I can’t apologize enough.
Use this sorry synonym when you want to emphasize how sorry you are.
I can’t apologize enough for throwing out the cake. I thought it was stale.
3. Please accept my sincerest apologies.
This I’m sorry synonym accentuates that your apology is sincere.
I won’t be able to attend the presentation on which you’ve been working so hard. Please accept my sincerest apologies.
4. I’m regretful.
This option expresses that you’re deeply apologetic. If you’re using it, make sure to still use “I’m sorry” or “I apologize” somewhere in your apology.
I’m sorry for missing the tournament. I’m regretful.
5. Pardon me.
This synonym for I’m sorry is rather formal, but should only be used for minor inconveniences. You shouldn’t say pardon me for major gaffes.
Pardon me for mispronouncing your name.
6. Please forgive me.
Please be aware that this I’m sorry synonym carries a lot of weight and can be quite sentimental. It tends to be used in more serious circumstances.
That was an egregious error on my end. Please forgive me.
7. I am at fault and take full responsibility.
A major component of apologizing is taking responsibility, which is what makes this I’m sorry synonym so powerful.
Mr. Harris, the client backed out last minute. I am at fault and take full responsibility.
8. I beg your pardon.
This is another polite expression that can be used in place of I’m sorry. It’s slightly more popular in British English than in US-American English.
I beg your pardon, but I won’t be able to make the delivery until later in the evening.
How To Apologize Professionally in an Email
Keep in mind that written apologies may differ from apologizing in person, especially if your written apology is for a professional email. In that case, avoid apologizing using clichés like sorry for the inconvenience, and instead use another phrase like I sincerely apologize for this oversight.
Casual “Sorry” Synonyms
The synonyms above are better suited for more serious situations. The synonyms below, on the other hand, are for minor mistakes, like accidentally bumping into someone. Keep in mind that these are informal options. They’re usually reserved for casual conversations or encounters.
9. My bad.
My bad. I didn’t see you there.
10. My mistake.
My mistake; I didn’t know you were waiting in line.
11. My fault.
My fault. I didn’t think you wanted to play the game anymore.
12. Sorry about that.
Sorry about that. I didn’t think you’d be joining.
13. Whoops (or Oops)
Whoops, I didn’t mean to leave that there.
Oops, I didn’t mean to leave that there.
Saying “I’m Sorry” in a Different Way
Different scenarios call for different types of apologies. That’s why it’s a good idea to familiarize yourself with these I’m sorry synonyms.
Remember, effective communication requires an expansive vocabulary. LanguageTool is a multilingual writing assistant that can help you find more accurate synonyms while writing. As if that weren’t impressive enough, it can also rephrase your sentences to better suit the tone you’re looking for.
It’s free to try, so give it a go!