Greetings and Introduction in German

How do you say hello and introduce yourself in German?
The basics of the German language. Greetings, saying goodbye and basic phrases to start speaking German

Welcome to the first article for learning German from We hope that the material we have prepared is helpful to you.

Here we go!

Saying hello


Hello in German is as easy as saying:


The following is a list of the most common greetings in German:

Hallo Hello
Servus Hello
(southern Germany)
Moin Hello
(northern Germany)
Grüß Dich Hello
Grüß Gott Hello
(southern Germany)
Guten Morgen Good morning
(until 10:00)
Guten Tag Good morning
(from about 10:00 to 5:00)
Mahlzeit Good morning
(from 11:00 to 1:00)
Moin moin Good morning
(northern Germany)
Guten Abend Good evening
(starting at around 5:00)
Gute Nacht Good night
Sehr geehrter Herr Merkel Dear Mr. Merkel
(only in letters or e-mails)
Sehr geehrte Frau MerkelDear Mrs. Merkel
(only in letters or e-mails)

Saying our name

We usually have to say our name when we introduce ourselves:

Mein Name ist Karl
My name is Karl


Ich heiße Karl
My name is Karl

or more simple with the verb sein (to be):

Ich bin Karl
I’m Karl

Asking what another person’s name is


Wie heißen Sie?
What’s your name?

To remain polite when we mention the name of another person, we do so with their last name preceded by Herr (Mr.) or by Frau (Mrs.).

the informal way:

Wie heißt Du?
What’s your name?

With the informal way we can refer to another person with their first name.

Saying what our profession is


One of the phrases that you will be asked most is what you do. A simple way to answer is:

Ich bin Lehrer
I’m a teacher


Ich arbeite als Lehrer
I work as a teacher

Asking what another person’s profession is

The formal way:

Was sind Sie von Beruf?
What’s your profession?

Was machen Sie beruflich?
What do you do for a living?

The informal way:

Was bist Du von Beruf?
What’s your profession?

Was machst Du beruflich?
What do you do for a living?

Saying Your Age

To say how old you are is simple:

Ich bin 30 Jahre alt
I’m 30 years old

Click on this link if you would like to review numbers in German.

Asking how old someone is

The formal way:

Wie alt sind Sie?
How old are you?

The informal way:

Wie alt bist Du?
How old are you?

Saying where you are from


The masculine form:

Ich bin Argentinier
I’m Argentinian

The feminine form:

Ich bin Argentinierin
I’m Argentinian

Where we are from and where we live

Learning these phrases is not a bad idea; you’ll have to use them hundreds of times:

Ich komme aus Madrid
I’m from Madrid

Ich wohne in Stuttgart
I live in Stuttgart

Asking about someone’s nationality

Welche Staatsangehörigkeit haben Sie?
What’s your nationality?

Language knowledge

We will frequently have to talk about which languages we know:

Ich spreche Spanisch, Englisch und Deutsch
I speak Spanish, English and German

Ich spreche kein Deutsch [formal or informal]
I don’t speak German

Ich kann kein Deutsch
I don’t speak any German

Ich spreche ein bisschen Deutsch
I speak a little German

Asking about someone’s German


Sprechen Sie Deutsch?
Do you speak German?


Sprichst du Deutsch?
Do you speak German?

Being Polite


Vielen Dank
Thanks a lot

You’re welcome / no problem (response to "Danke")

More info at: Saying thanks in German

What to say at special occasions

Frohe Weihnachten
Merry Christmas

Frohes neues Jahr
Happy New Year

Alles Gute zum Geburtstag
Happy Birthday

More info at: Birthday Song

Saying Goodbye

The most common way to say goodbye is:

Tschüss !!!!

In addition, below are the most common ways to say goodbye:

Ways to say goodbyeMeaning
Tschüss goodbye
Ciao goodbye
Ade goodbye
Auf Wiedersehen see you
Auf Wiederhören goodbye
(only on the phone)
Bis bald see you soon
Bis später see you later
Mit freundlichen Grüßen Sincerely
(formal way to say goodbye in letters or e-mails)
Mit herzlichen Grüßen Kind regards
(informal way to say goodbye in letters or e-mails)


We are not going to be too tough on you because it’s the first lesson.

It’s okay if you learn to say:


Mein Name ist ...
My name is …

Bis bald
See you soon

I don’t think that was difficult, we’ll see each other in the next German language article.

Tschüss !!!!

Audiovisual supplement

We think you should watch a video with the very famous song Lili Marleen from Marlene Dietrich for this first lesson. This song became very popular on both sides during the Second World War.

When learning German you also have the chance to learn about an exciting culture.