I’d choose to show you exactly how to understand Chinese greetings so you will do it know just how to say “hello” in Chinese.

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Saying “hello” is usually the very first thing you discover when studying a brand-new language. It’s among the most basic things come learn and it’s typically an extremely easy.

But it have the right to be a little trickier 보다 it seems, together there space lots of different ways come say “hello”.

In this post, I’ll show you a selection of Mandarin greetings – native “good afternoon” in Chinese come “What’s up?” in Chinese.


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1. “Hello” in Chinese – 你好 (nǐ hǎo)

One the the an initial words you’ll discover when researching Chinese is 你好 (nǐ hǎo), i m sorry literally means “you good”.

If you’re currently learning Chinese, her experience may be comparable to mine – every time who hears I deserve to speak Chinese they go: “Oh, say something in Chinese! What is it… I understand I know! Nǐ hǎo! Right?”

Long story, short: nǐ hǎo is the most basic means of saying “hello” in Chinese.

It’s not wrong come say nǐ hǎo. But you’ll rarely hear native Chinese speakers usage this phrase.

It would more than likely be like saying “Greetings” in English – nobody really supplies it anymore, yet it’s tho acceptable and also people understand it.

Feel totally free to usage 你好 (nǐ hǎo) – at least until girlfriend learn new ways of speak “hello” in Mandarin Chinese.

But don’t protect against there! I desire to display you how to say “hi” in Chinese and how come use various other greetings in Chinese.

So, if you want to sound an ext like a native, and to possibly impress your Chinese friends, discover some of this Mandarin Chinese greetings:


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您好 (nín hǎo) – “Hello”

This is a much more polite method to speak “hello” in Chinese.

You might currently know that (nín) is the official “you” form. You usage it in Chinese when talking come older world or world you have actually respect for.

Most likely, if you shed the one “n” in ~ the end of “nín” and say 你好 (nǐ hǎo) instead, nobody will obtain upset with you.

But be aware, a many older and also traditional Chinese people will appreciate if you use (*nín).

你吃了吗? (Nǐ chīle ma?) – “Have you eaten?”

When you analyze the expression character by character, it means “Have girlfriend eaten?”

But this is one of the most typical ways to say “hi” in Chinese.

Native Chinese civilization use it very often, and although occasionally they actually want to ask you if you’ve had your dinner or not, most most likely they’re simply greeting you.

You deserve to answer by saying: 吃了 (chīle, “I have”). This is your method of speak “hi” back.

It’s polite to say 吃了, and if you know the human being well, you can proceed with a conversation.

You could likewise say 没有 (méiyǒu, “I haven’t”), which would certainly actually permit them recognize you’re hungry and also want to eat!

你吃过饭了没有? (Nǐ chīguò fànle méiyǒu?) – “Have you eaten (rice)?”

This has the same an interpretation as the vault phrase, but it’s a little bit longer.

means “rice” or “food”, and so it could be translated literally together “Have you eaten rice?” or “Have you consumed food?”.

But, again, it’s simply one of the most typical greetings in Mandarin Chinese.

It’s choose saying “Hello, just how are you?”. It’s simply that Chinese human being prefer to use food-related expressions. Their society and relationships are around food.

But remember — the concern doesn’t median they’re in reality interested in even if it is you’ve had actually rice this particular day or not.

You have the right to answer an in similar way to the previous question: 吃了 (chīle, “I have”) or 吃过了 (chīguòle, “I ate”).

Both of this literally typical “I have actually eaten”, however you’re simply saying “hi” earlier to them.

大家好 (dàjiā hǎo) – “Hello everyone”

This expression is offered when speak “hi” in Chinese to a bigger group of people.

The literal an interpretation is “everyone good?” and is a substitute to 你好 (nǐ hǎo).

You probably wouldn’t usage 大家好 once greeting just two people, however it i will not ~ be completely wrong. To it is in on the for sure side and sound much more like a native, make certain you just use 大家好 once greeting three or much more people.

你们好 (nǐmen hǎo) – “Hello everyone”

Similar to the greeting above, this Chinese greeting is supplied to say “hello” to a group.

In English it means “everyone good”, just like 大家好 (dàjiā hǎo).

你们好 (nǐmen hǎo) is the greeting to use v a group of 2 people, but feel free to use it v bigger groups, too. A Chinese teacher or an larger person might correct you, yet it’s not wrong to use this phrase as soon as saying “hi” in Chinese to much more than 2 people.

Comparing this through the ahead phrase, you’re an ext likely come hear 大家好 (dàjiā hǎo), as it’s a bit less formal.

久仰 (jiǔyǎng) or 久仰大名 (jǐu yǎng dà míng*) – “Hello, pretty to fulfill you”

This is a really polite method to to speak hello in China.

It way “I have actually been looking forward to conference you for a lengthy time.” Or also “I have been admiring you for a lengthy time.”

This greeting is usually supplied when conference someone friend really desire to or have to be polite with. It’s no a common method to to speak “nice to fulfill you” or “hi” among friends.

It’s likely that girlfriend won’t ever before need to usage 久仰大名 if you’re finding out Chinese because that fun, travel or various other casual reasons. Uneven you’re plan to accomplish some Chinese celebrities!

幸会 (xìng huì) – “Nice to accomplish you”

This is a more colloquial and also common way among people who space the very same age and position as you; her peers.

It’s really just “nice to accomplish you” when you meet someone for the very first time and also shake their hand.

You deserve to use this expression with older people as well.

It i will not ~ be dorn to use 幸会 with a friend’s parents or a teacher, either.

(wéi) – “Hello”

This method “hello” in Mandarin, and you use it as soon as picking increase the phone.

deserve to be used in two tones – wèi and also wéi. Wèi is an ext used together a “hey” 보다 “hello” answering the phone.

If girlfriend know that you need to be careful around how you answer the phone, continue to be on the for sure side and also use wéi. That way, you won’t offend anyone.

Read much more about tones in the Chinese language here.

怎么了 (zěnmeliǎo or zěnmele) – “What’s Up?”

This Chinese greeting is mainly used amongst friends and also young people. It way “How are you?” or “What’s up?”.

You won’t hear older human being using this phrase and they can either not know it, or also get offended if you use it with them.

Comparing to English “what” in the phrase, 怎么 means “how” in Chinese, but the meaning stays the same.

is a modal particle used in Mandarin Chinese to increase a completed action. Because that example, 你吃了吗? mirrors that the human being asking the concern is curious to watch if did you do it eaten/ate in the past, but not questioning if you’re eat now.

In 怎么了 (“What’s up?”), a literal translation the “up” is no needed; serves together “up” in this case.

哈罗 (hā luō) – “Hello”

Does it repeat you the something?

Yes, you got it.

哈罗 is a Chinese variation (transliteration) that “hello”.

Chinese world love to come up through transliterations the English words and also incorporate them right into their language quickly.

哈罗 is no the only one they obtained from English.

With all these transliterations, you can not hear lock often among older people. However you can be virtually 100% sure your younger friends will recognize them.

Have a watch at this ones:

(hāi) – “Hi”

If you desire to know exactly how to speak “hi” in Chinese, well, this one is it.

Similar come 哈罗, this greeting is exactly how you speak “hi” in Mandarin utilizing the sound the the English “hi”. Also the character is a unique one for this greeting – it doesn’t mean anything else 보다 “hi”.

(hēi) – “Hey”

A third familiar word!

You guessed it, this is “hey” transliterated right into Chinese.

出去玩吗? (Chūqù wán ma?) – “Hello/How are you?”

This expression literally method “Do you want to go out to play?” If somebody asks girlfriend this, don’t be also surprised. They space actually not asking girlfriend if you going out to play, but rather to watch where you space going.

Most likely they either want to sign up with with you in what you doing, or they are just saying hi.

You have the right to answer by saying hāi, “Hi”. Or you have the right to say something prefer 我要和朋友出去玩, 加入我们 (Wǒ yào hé péngyǒu chūqù wán, jiārù wǒmen) – “I’m going out with a friend, join us!” or ”Would you prefer to join us?”.

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去哪? (Qù nǎ?) – “Where room you going?”

In English, this appears a little nosy and also might advanced eyebrows. However it is a common method to speak “hello” or “how room you?” in Chinese. And also sometimes, her conversation companion will actually suppose you come say whereby you are going!

For example, if you satisfy some in the afternoon on the street who provides this phrase, you deserve to reply 从学校接回孩子 (Cóng xuéxiào jiē huí háizi) – “Picking up youngsters from school”.