Alternatives to “Hello”
- Hello is a common greeting used at the start of conversations. A few formal phrases you can use in place of hello are:
- ○ How are you?
- ○ Pleased to meet you.
- ○ It’s good to see you.
Knowing how to speak fluent English entails much more than just memorizing definitions, understanding the parts of speech, and following the grammar rules.
Learning several different ways of saying even the most common phrases helps you sound more natural, regardless of the scenario.
Below, you’ll find ten formal and informal ways to say the most popular English greeting out there—hello.
Formal Ways To Say “Hello”
Picture this: Your colleague takes you to an important meeting. You go around shaking everyone’s hands and repeatedly say “Hello…hello…hello” as your colleague introduces you to numerous people.
Sure, there’s nothing wrong with repeating the same greeting over and over again. But most of the time, a fluent speaker would instinctively switch up the word choice, even if only once or twice.
You could use the phrases below to substitute or supplement the word hello.
1. Good morning/afternoon/evening.
These are classic, formal phrases to use when greeting someone, whether it’s the first time meeting them or if you’ve already met them before.
↓Good morning, Frank.
Using good morning, good afternoon, or good evening depends on the time of day.
2. Pleased to meet you.
This phrase is a formal alternative to hello and only works when you’re meeting someone for the first time.
↓Pleased to meet you. I’m Sarah.
3. It’s nice to meet you.
As with the previous phrase, this hello alternative only works when you first meet someone.
↓It’s nice to meet you, Christopher.
Conversely, if you’re saying goodbye to someone you’ve just met for the first time, you would say it was nice to meet you.
4. It’s good to see you.
This alternative is suitable when you’re greeting someone you’ve already met. As we mentioned earlier, this phrase can be used to replace hello entirely or simply supplement it.
↓It’s good to see you, Connor.
orHello. It’s good to see you, Connor.
5. How are you?
This alternative is extremely common. It’s unique in that people use it as a common greeting, but don’t expect a thorough, even honest answer when they ask it. In other words, people expect a one or two-word answer like I’m fine, or I’m well, …even if you aren’t.
↓How are you, Ana?
orHello. How are you, Ana?
Casual Ways To Say “Hello”
Now, let’s say that the same colleague who just took you to an important meeting invites you out after work to meet her friends. In this much more casual and relaxed atmosphere, you don’t have to stick to the formal greetings like pleased to meet you. Instead, you can say:
Hey is a direct synonym of hello, except much more casual.
↓Hey, I’m Ike.
You can use the following phrases on their own, or add hey beforehand.
7. What’s up?
What’s up is the casual equivalent to how are you, in the sense that people usually aren’t expecting a long response when used as a greeting.
↓What’s up, Brad? I’m Jerry.
8. What’s new?
Whereas what’s up works whether you’re meeting someone for the first time or already know them, what’s new works best with people you already know.
↓What’s new, Jonas?
9. Long time no see.
Long time no see is a casual way of saying “it’s been a long time since I last saw you,” and therefore only works for people you already know.
↓Hey, Monica. Long time no see.
10. How’s everything?
How’s everything is another phrase you could use in place of hello. It’s asked casually to know what people have been up to or if anything interesting has happened. It’s basically another way to say how are you?
↓Hey everyone. How’s everything?
Say Hello to Flawless Writing
Besides correcting spelling and grammar errors, LanguageTool can also help improve your written fluency by rephrasing your writing. You will be pleased to meet the new sentences LanguageTool can rewrite for you.