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= to waste time doing unnecessary or unimportant things in a disorganised manner
“come on, stop faffing about and put your shoes on, we’ve got to go! ”


Hello everyone.

This is Luke from Luke’s English Podcast. This year I’m teaching you a phrasal verb every day.

…and today’s phrasal verb is TO FAFF ABOUT or FAFF AROUND.



FAFF that’s spell “F”-“A” double “F”.


If you FAFF AROUND – it means you’re basically wasting time, doing things that are not important or unnecessary.


So, doing things in unorganised way, wasting time, when you should be doing more important things.


So, you might say, for example, you know, you’re leaving the house, sometimes it’s difficult to just leave, because you end up FAFFING AROUND. You’re kind of like:

– “Oh, I’ll just check…, I’ll just write this text message.” or

– “What shall I wear? Shall I wear this sweater? Shall I put this scarf on?”

…and, you know, for some reason, you find loads of stupid unnecessary little things to do before you leave the house, and whoever you with might say to you:

– “Look! Stop FAFFING AROUND, and just get you shoes on. Alright?”, for example.

– “You’re always FAFFING ABOUT”

– “What are you… What are you doing up there? Look! Stop FAFFING AROUND! We’ve got to go”.

There you go. TO FAFF AROUND.

Do you often FAFF AROUND or FAFF ABOUT, when you should be sort of getting down to business and actually doing things?

Let me know! Leave a comment.

Don’t forget you can visit teacherluke.wordpress.com where you can find all the details, transcripts of these episodes and more.

That’s it for this one, and I catch you later.

Bye, bye, bye, bye, bye.

  • Denis Paraschuk

    I don’t like faffing around unlike my wife – she has been faffiing about everyday :)

  • María José

    Oh I´m afraid yes, I definitely do faff around often…

  • Oh, I really like it! Then, can I explain, for example “I’m not faffing about when I watch a film with my husband instead clean up the house”?…

  • Anna

    It’s the first time I heard this phrasal verb. Thank you for enriching my vocab!

  • Anonymous

    In general, lazy guys prefer faffing around while ohters are working very hard


  • Donald

    Excellent! Thanks to you I can expand my personal vocabulary. Bye!

  • Good, clear explanation – great stuff! :)

  • Donald

    I’ve never heard of it before! I’ve always used the expression ” to waste your time doing something usless “. Is this verb common? I mean, do you English usually use this verb or it is more common the expression I’ve just written?

    • It’s an informal one, but yes I use it, and so do my friends and family!