I think this is pretty common in UK influenced English around the globe. As I mentioned in my comment below, this actually means something different in American English. There is at least one other verb phrase with up in it that has a different meaning in American English. The other one is more remarkably different. In British English if they are in the neighborhood a British person might opt to knock somebody up to have a conversation rather than calling them up. Obviously knocking somebody up in American English means something quite different.
In American English both to us or with us would be used. If I were to over-analyze a difference I would say that you catch up to the frontrunner in a race but with your friends at the mall (e.g. catch up to and proceed with) You also catch up with friends by hearing their news but I don't think that would be alcanzar in Spanish. In American English to catch somebody up is to fill somebody in on what they missed in a movie or a project. Again I wouldn't think that is alcanzar but I am not sure. So I am curious whether those two examples in British English both mean to catch up with as in reaching a moving object. I am also curious as to whether any native Spanish speakers can weigh in on what word(s) would best be used to express the other type of catching up which is learning about the progress and events of something.
I am Spanish "alcanzar" is commonly used in these contexts
1-Get to match someone in some trait, feature or situation.
2-Reach out to where a person or thing is ahead in time or space.
3-Get to touch or grasp by hand a thing that is some distance away.
4-Get to a place before a person or thing goes or ends.
In all these cases the word "alcanzar" can not be replaced by another word. You can use it in more contexts but are grammatically more difficult to learn and the word can be easily replaced by other words
I hope this has helped you a little, it's difficult for me to explain it in English
Yeah, but in British English, the phrase would be to catch someone up.
I, as an American, thought it was weird at first, but I found this dictionary link http://dictionary.cambridge.org/us/dictionary/british/catch-sb-up :)
I don't think it is "poor English" as per Jangeloid's comment above ( but agree its not the most common way to say it. At least for me)
Catch up is separable phrasal verb. We can catch someone up, or Catch up to someone - as used here
Like you though I'd use " They are going to catch up with us"
That's interesting. I realized that I say both catch up with and catch up to, but in different contexts. I am American. I would say catch up to if I were walking and physically trying to go faster to reach people ahead of me. But I would say catch up with in terms of both work or other group activities (catch up with the class). I would also use with in the idiomatic expression catch up with as in I spent my first weekend home from college catching up with friends. I think that is a common usage of each in American English, but I doubt I would notice if the other one was used.
We're talking two different situations. If you are in a race then you can certainly say they are going to catch up to us. You could also say that you're competitors are going to catch up to us. However to say "catch us up", at least where I'm from, means that you are passing information as in: "we haven't seen you for years why don't you "catch us up" on what's happening in your life.
Catch us up meaning catch up to us is British, although I am not sure how wife spread. I am American and to me it means something different. If I came late to a meeting, class or movie, I might ask someone there to catch me/us up, meaning give enough of what happened so we are all on the same page.
To summarize, in a race: Americans only say ".. catch up to us", which makes no sense in British English. British Eng uses "... catch us up" instead.
"... catch us up" IS used by Americans, but has a completely different meaning than the Spanish and British Eng sentences in this question . In America it means "tell me what I missed"
Can someone put this phrase "They are going to catch up to us" with some context or in an example? please
At least in Spanish for instance you can say "Ellos nos van a alcanzar" in a marathon to your partner, like "hurry up". But I don't know if in english has the same meaning :)
"They are going to catch up." Should be accepted, not "catch us up". That's different. A group of people are going somewhere but one person can't leave yet. He is going to meet the others later wherever they are, hence he is going to catch up. Catch us up is used if a couple people need to miss a class and the teacher plans to meet with them to give the information that was missed. I would say the teacher is going to catch us up.
That is a major difference between American and British English. They are going to catch us up actually means something slightly different in American English. To catch someone up in American English means to tell somebody about what has been happening in a television show or movie or what has already been covered in a course, etc. To catch up to someone is to be walking behind them and accelerate you pace so you reach them without their having to stop. Interestingly to catch up with someone can be either the mutual exchange of what has been happening in each other's lives or to catch up to someone physically or in terms of any type of progress with the assumption that you are then proceeding together. This is actually one of the reasons why it is important to have a declared English that you are basing things on. It is much easier to try to accommodate differences in spelling and terminology that are common between American and British English (many of which a lot of people are at least aware of) than to try to accommodate differences in the meanings of the same word or the meaning conveyed by syntax. The latter does require declaring a standard especially when it comes to translation. As someone who has been on both sides of the standard in different programs, I do understand the difficulty especially since these are differences of which I, at least, am often totally unaware until confronted by them. But on this particular site, American English is the standard. I believe they are trying to accomodate some of the terminology (lorry for truck, flat for apartment) and the spelling (color/colour, realize/realize) but as I said when something potentially alters meaning where it is not ambiguous for most speakers, that cannot be accomodated in a language learning program.