Beginner English: Hello & Goodbye

There are many ways to say “hello” and “goodbye” in English, especially in informal conversation. Try out these phrases next time you’re practicing!


Hello / Hi / Hey

These are the most basic greetings. “Hey” is more informal. You might  hear the word “there” after any of these words: Hello there. Hi there. Hey there. 

How’s it going?  / How are you? / How are things?

People often greet others with these types of questions. It’s fine to respond “Good” or “I’m fine” or “Not bad.” For the most part, these questions are simply greetings; don’t go into detail about your day or give a lengthy explanation unless the person asks you.

What’s up?

This just means “What is happening with you / in your life?” Like the questions above, the questioner isn’t really looking for a lengthy explanation. It’s fine to respond with something like “Not much” or “Nothing new.”



Goodbye / Bye / Bye Bye / See you [later / soon].

The goodbyes are pretty simple and self-explanatory. “See you” (or “see you later” or “see you soon”) often ends up sounding like “ya” as in, “see ya.” You can also add polite phrases like “take care” or “good to see you” afterward as well.


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