When do we need to ask for permission? I m sure you have to ask for or grant permission on a daily basis at work, at home, while you commute, etc. How do we ask for permission in English? Well, there are all kinds of different phrases you can use. They can be formal if the situation is formal or less formal or informal if you are talking to your friends and family. An important thing is to always be polite when asking for and giving permission.