How to say / pronounce Hello and Goodbye in mandarin Chinese

Posted by Mollan Mo on 05/11/2015 10:43 PM 2420

How do I say Hello in Chinese?

Learning how to greet people in Mandarin Chinese is important and when you are in or planning to be in China because basic greetings are the foundation for relationships.

Say Hello in Mandarin Chinese

hello in chinese

The Mandarin phrase that means Hello is Ni hao, pronounced knee how. Nǐ (the third tone) - 你 means "you" and hǎo (the third tone) - 好 means "good". If you were to translate it to English, it would mean "you good?" When you come upon one of your Chinese friends, you can say "Nǐ hǎo", and your Chinese friends will also reply with "Nǐ hǎo" to express kindness and politeness.

However, this greeting is informal, usually used for friends, peers and associates. The formal way to say "Hello" is Nín hǎo - 您好, pronounced neen how. Notice that the formal "you" is "Nín" - 您, it is used for strangers, elders, superiors or people in authority. When you encounter someone older or distinguished, you might say Nin hao. And another very casual and common greeting is Nǐ hǎo ma - 你好吗. This is a question asking others' recent condition, also expressing friendly.

Say Goodbye in Chinese

Goodbye in Chinese

To say goodbye in Mandarin Chinese you say zài jiàn - 再见, both of these two characters are pronounced in forth tone. Zài means again, once more, and jiàn means see, meet. So a possible translation of zài jiàn - 再见 is "see you again". But it is worth noting that don't think of zài jiàn - 再见 as two single words, it is one phrase that means Goodbye.

Other common ways to say Goodbye in Chines language are as follows.

  1. míng tiān jiàn - 明天见(see you tomorrow).
  2. yī huĭr jiàn - 一会儿见 (see you later).
  3. huí tóu jiàn - 回头见 (see you later)
  4. xià cì jiàn - 下次见 (see you next time)
  5. zài huì - 再会 (see you later)
  6. gào cí - 告辞 (see you later)

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Video Tutorial: Learn how to say Goodbye in Chinese with Professional Chinese Teacher

About The Author

Mollan Mo

Mollan holds a bachelor’s degree in teaching Chinese as a foreign language. Experienced and skilled, she utilizes a variety of activities and methods to keep her classes lively. She loves her job and her passion to share her language and culture with others drives her to help her students succeed. Learn Chinese online with Mollan Mo >>

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