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Other ways to say “Hello”

Are you also sick and tired of “Hello, how are you? – I’m fine, thank you.”

Today let’s talk about other ways of greetings.



Formal ways

In situations that are more formal or when you need to show respect and be courtesy you need use formal greetings. These instances include business meetings, formal classroom or workplace presentations, or meeting a friend’s parents. You may encounter such greetings when doing business in restaurants and shops.

  1. “Hello!”
  2. “Good morning.”
  3. “Good afternoon.”
  4. “Good evening.”
  5. “It’s nice to meet you.”
  6. “It’s a pleasure to meet you.” (These last two only work when you are meeting someone for the first time.)


Informal ways

These greetings can be used in most informal situations when you are saying hello to a person you know well.

  1. “Hi!” (Probably the most commonly used greeting in English)
  2. “Hey” or “Hey there.” 
  3. “What’s up?” (Sometimes expressed as “‘Sup?” Use it if you’re a teenager or want to pretend that you are one 🙂 )
  4. “How’s it going?” (This is casual, especially when you shorten it as in “How’s it goin’?”)
  5. “What’s happening” or “What’s happenin’?”
  6. “Yo!” This is hiphop slang from the 1980’s and 1990’s. When you say this, you sound either tough and cool, or silly. It all depends on your personality.
  7.  “Morning!” (A more casual way of saying “Good morning”)
  8. “How are things (with you)?”
  9. “How you doin?”
  10. “What’s new?”
  11. “It’s good to see you.” (Used when you haven’t seen someone in a while)
  12. “G’day!” (Short for “Good day”)
  13. “Howdy!” (Often used in the southern regions of the United States. You might sound like you’re pretending to be a cowboy if you use it.)
  14. “Good to see you”, “Great to see you” .
  15. Well hello! Say “Hi” this way when you’re surprised to see someone, or if you haven’t seen them in a long time. It makes you seem excited.
  16. Well hello there! A man might say this to a beautiful woman, including his own girlfriend or wife if she’s wearing something sexy. When you say this with the correct intonation, it makes you sound attracted to the person you’re talking to.
  17. Look who it is! You can use this when you see someone that you haven’t seen in a long time. It sounds really excited.
  18. Look what the cat dragged in! This is an energetic, teasing way to say “Hello” to someone that you haven’t seen in a while. It’s a kind of joke. You’re saying that the person looks like a dead mouse or some piece of trash that a cat has found and carried inside. Of course, it’s not serious. You only say this to tease the person. But not everyone thinks this joke is funny.


Be careful!

Even though some of these expressions look like questions, you don’t always need to answer them. “How are you doing” is usually the same as just saying, “Hello”. In fact, confusing as it may seem, sometimes a question is answered with a question. And sometimes these greetings can be used in combination:

Jane: “Hi, Jake. What’s new?”

Jake: “G’day, Jane. How are things?” or “Morning, Jane. It’s good to see you!”

Not always does the other person want to actually hear specific details about how you are.  Be safe and keep it short.  If the person asks more questions, then it means they really want to know more details.


This list of ways to say “hello” is just the top of the iceberg. The expressions are easy enough to learn; the tricky part is learning to use them appropriately. Try to use a different greeting every time you meet someone new or get together with your friend. Expand you vocabulary and be creative! 😉

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