Skip main navigation

A variety of Korean greeting expressions

A variety of Korean greetings
Korean people greeting
© Youngsook Lee, Hanyang University

Koreans say “안녕하세요 [an nyeong ha seyo]?” while slightly bowing their head when they greet others.

“안녕하세요?”is used interchangeably to say “Hi, hello, good morning/afternoon/evening”.

You can simply say “안녕?” when you are greeting your friends or a person younger than you.

“안녕하세요?” can be used regardless of the time of the day; it can be used in the morning, afternoon, or evening.

When you are saying goodbye to a person, you would say “안녕히 가세요 [an nyeong hi ga se yo]” or “안녕히 계세요 [an nyeong hi gye se yo]”in Korean.

The direct translation of “안녕히 가세요 [an nyeong hi ga se yo]” is “Go well/go in peace” which is a phrase that is used when you are sending off the other person, and “안녕히 계세요 [an nyeong hi gye se yo]”is “stay well/stay in peace” which is a phrase that is used when you are the one who is leaving.

When you are wishing your friend or a person younger than you a farewell, you can simply use “안녕” just as you would when you greet them.

Do you have any Korean greetings that you would like to know more about? Let’s talk about various Korean greetings in the comments section.
© Youngsook Lee, Hanyang University
This article is from the free online

Introduction to Korean

Created by
FutureLearn - Learning For Life

Our purpose is to transform access to education.

We offer a diverse selection of courses from leading universities and cultural institutions from around the world. These are delivered one step at a time, and are accessible on mobile, tablet and desktop, so you can fit learning around your life.

We believe learning should be an enjoyable, social experience, so our courses offer the opportunity to discuss what you’re learning with others as you go, helping you make fresh discoveries and form new ideas.
You can unlock new opportunities with unlimited access to hundreds of online short courses for a year by subscribing to our Unlimited package. Build your knowledge with top universities and organisations.

Learn more about how FutureLearn is transforming access to education