American greetings

 In College Life, Social Skills

TALK students who studying abroad will probably find at the start of their stay that the new culture and language is a little daunting. Let’s begin at the beginning, and that means the American way of greeting.  There are many acceptable ways to say hello and goodbye in the U.S.A. Here are some pointers for when you meet, or take leave of, someone.

Ways to say Hellogreeting

  1. Hey there – “Hey There” is a friendly, casual, and familiar greeting which could be used between romantic partners or good friends in voice mail, email, text messages, and spoken English.
  2. What’s going on? – “What’s Going On?” is a casual greeting which can be used in informal situations between acquaintances or between friends.
  3. Hey! What’s up? – “Hey! What’s Up” is a casual greeting that can be used between siblings, colleagues, and friends.
  4. Good Morning/Afternoon – This greeting is more formal.  It is used between work or business colleagues, and in customer service at shops, hotels, and restaurants.
  5. How are you doing today? – This is designed to be formal and is generally used between a professional business person and a client. It can also be used amongst  working colleagues or between working colleagues and their bosses.
  6. Hey! There she is! – This greeting is used in situations where you know a person well enough and it gives the impression that you have been expecting this person for some time. You may also be happy to see this person.
  7. How’s everything? – This saying is usually casual and is another way of saying “how are you?”
  8. How are things? – This is more casual than “How’s everything?”
  9. Nice/Great/Good to see you – These greetings can be used casually or informally between business colleagues, family members or friends. They are used to greet people who you may not have seen in a while.
  10. What’s happening – This greeting is used by younger people and is generally used to greet friends as they arrive at a party or class.
  11. How’s it going? This is casual and can be used with friends or family members.
  12. Good evening – This formal evening greeting is usually adopted by the staff of by high-end restaurants, hotels and other smart formal establishments such as private clubs, etc.

9 Ways to say goodbye

  1. See you later – This becomes a causal goodbye, especially when greeting you use “ya” in place of the “you.”
  2. See you soon – The same – as above, see “ya” soon – applies to this when the “you” is changed. It can also be used when you have planned a meeting with someone.
  3. Take care – This can be a causal or formal goodbye that is used with people you know and care about. You may see this in written letters and emails.
  4. Take it easy – This is casual, and means the same as “Take care”, “Look after yourself.”
  5. Gotta go! – This is used in situations that are casual, and when you want to get away from the conversation, or you don’t want to go through a long goodbye.
  6. Talk to you soon – This goodbye is used in writing emails or when speaking on the phone. It is a casual goodbye.
  7. See you next time – This goodbye is used when you know you will be returning to a person or place.
  8. Catch ya later – This is a casual goodbye between acquaintances or between friends.
  9. Have a good one – This is casual and means have a nice day. It could be used between colleagues, friends, strangers or family members .


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