Updated: Nov 18, 2019
By: Rafael Nuñez.
Having a conversation in another language can be a bit scary. Learning phrases that you’ll use in real conversations would make it so much easier and not scary at all.
We've prepared this series of useful phrases in Spanish every learner should know. The phrases are divided into sections that form a conversation.
In this part, we are going to start with greetings and farewells. Saludos y despedidas.
Greetings are used when meeting one or more people. The most used are:
1. Hola - hello.
It’s an informal way of saying “hi”.
2. Buenos Días - good morning.
Use it in the morning to greet people. It’s quite polite so you can use it with friends and with people you don’t know.
You can combine Hola and Buenos días. Ex:
Hola Pedro, buenos días.
Hola muchachos/as, buenos días.
3. Buenas Tardes - good afternoon.
Use it in the afternoon from 12:00 pm to 5:59 pm. You can use it both with people you know and those you don’t.
You can combine Hola and Buenas tardes. Ex:
Hola chicos/as, Buenas tardes.
Hola niños/as, Buenas tardes.
4. Buenas Noches - good evening.
This greeting is used from 6:00 pm to 11:59 pm. You can use it both with people you know and those you don’t. Ex:
Buenas noches, gracias por invitarme.
You can combine Hola and Buenas noches. Ex:
Hola Sara, Buenas noches.
In Spanish, the use of farewells depends on the context and the person you are speaking with. The most used expressions to say goodbye are the following:
5. Buenas Noches - goodnight.
It is also used to say goodbye or when going to sleep. Ex:
Buenas noches Pedro, que descanses.
Ya tengo que irme, Buenas noches.
6. Adiós - goodbye.
It is used for someone leaving for an extended period of time or with no expectation of seeing them again. Ex:
You can also combine Buenas noches and adiós. Ex:
Adiós Elizabeth, Buenas noches.
7. Hasta luego or nos vemos.
It is used like "see you later" or "see you soon". Ex:
Hasta luego Laura.
Nos vemos David.
or just: Hasta luego / nos vemos
You can also combine these. Ex:
Hasta luego Laura, nos vemos pronto.
8. Nos vemos mañana - see you tomorrow. You can insert any day of the week to refer to when you’d see the person you’re talking with.
Nos vemos mañana Daniela.
Nos vemos el lunes.
Nos vemos la próxima semana.
9. Hasta siempre - A final goodbye. You will most likely not see each other again. Ex:
Hasta siempre amigos.
Hasta siempre general.
11. Hasta nunca - Until never.
As in, we'll never see each other again, sometimes said when angry.
Hasta nunca Martha.
“Hasta la vista” nobody says it 😑
This is technically Italian, but it’s widely used as a very informal goodbye. It’s used similar to “peace” in English. Used between friends. Chao is extremely informal and you want to use it only with close friends.
You can also combine Chao with other farewells. Ex:
Chao Claudia, Buenas noches.
Chao Peter, hasta luego.
Chao Elizabeth, nos vemos pronto.
These are the most common and useful greetings and farewells in Spanish and can be used in many everyday situations.
On the second of this series, we would review phrases that allow us to ask how does someone is or feels.