5+ Basic Greetings In Afrikaans That You Must Keep Close

Hallo! Hoe gaan dit met?! If I guess correctly, it is either you are traveling to South Africa soon and want to get accustomed to their basic greetings, or you are an enthusiastic language learner just getting started in learning Afrikaans. Either way, you are in the right post. Here, we will look at the basic greetings in Afrikaans that you can use for strangers and friends alike and also help you start meaningful conversations with the locals.

In South Africa and Africa, you should know that they value greetings, and it is only polite to greet whoever you see whenever you enter a room, especially when elderly people are present. Doing this will allow people to open up to you more quickly and allow you to start great conversations with anyone. So, enough of the talking! Let’s take a look at some basic Afrikaans greetings to keep close!

5 Basic Greetings To Start With

greetings in afrikaans

Let’s start with the essential Afrikaans phrases used to create any form of greeting, which almost all South Africans understand.

Goeie Dag

The first Afrikaans word you should know is Goeie dag means Good day/Hello. This is a formal way of greeting, and it is usually used when you are meeting a stranger for the first time or in a formal gathering. You should note that you will not hear this daily because most people greet informally, especially with family and friends.

So, if you don’t want to sound too formal, check out the next word for saying Hello.

Hallo/Haai /

Hallo is the informal way of saying Hello, and it is easy to remember because of its similarity with the English word, Hello. This is usually used amongst friends. It is often accompanied by a handshake, a slight head raise, or any other gesture unique to the friendship. You should feel free to use this word with your friends.

Hoe Gaan Dit Met U?

As you may have guessed, this means how are you, and it is the formal way of asking. You can use hoe gaan dit met u when talking to a stranger or an older adult. This is rarely used amongst friends. They will rather throw in the slang of what’s up or stick to the informal version of how are you.

Hoe Gaan Dit Met Jou?

you only use Hoe gaan dit met jou when talking to a friend or acquaintance. It is more informal and neutral and should only be used with friends. We will advise you not to say this when meeting a stranger. However, it is not a serious offense, the person will understand that you are an Afrikaans learner.

If you want to reply to how are you, simply say Baie goed dankie.

Time-Related Greetings In Afrikaans

sun setting

Let’s look at the various greetings used depending on the time of the day. If you cannot remember any of these greetings, you can stick with the simple Hallo, but it will be great if you greet South Africans according to the time of the day


This means good morning, usually used to greet when you meet a person in the morning. Goeiemôre is the formal way of greeting someone. Most South Africans stick to the shortened version, which is môre. So, you can say môre to a friend with a friendly handshake.

Goeie Middag

Meeting someone when the sun is out? Then Goeie middag is the perfect greeting for the occasion. Goeie middag, as you may have already guessed, means good afternoon.


The greeting perfect for the evening is Goeienaad (good evening), which is often used when you are meeting someone in the evening. You can use this for any occasion, whether formal or informal.


Goeienag means goodnight, and it is also a great alternative to parting ways apart from goodbye, especially at night. Goeienag is usually used in a formal setting, maybe when parting ways with a stranger or your boss, but nag is the shortened form and is used in informal situations.


There are two major Afrikaans’ words for saying goodbye. You can either use Totsiens or Mooi loop. Mooi loop is usually used between friends and relatives, meaning walk well or take care. Totsiens fits more into the formal setting.

Four Useful Phrases To Keep Close

set of black people smiling

During your greeting, someone may ask what your name is or thank you for something. So, here are three more phrases you should keep close in case you are asked.

  • What is your name – Wat is jou naam?
  • My name is – My naam is
  • Have a nice day – Lekker dag
  • Thank You – Dankie

Final Thoughts

Whew! We’ve gone through the basic greeting Afrikaans words you can use wherever you find yourself. I hope you’ve learned one or more Afrikaans phrases to use next time you meet a stranger or friend. If you want to learn more words, cultural insights, and idioms and are looking for the best platform to help you achieve your goals and move from a complete beginner to a fluent speaker, check out the Ling App.

Learn Afrikaans With Ling App

learn afrikaans with ling app

Suppose you are thinking of learning Afrikaans and becoming a fluent speaker quickly. Then Ling App is the perfect match.

Ling App is a language learning app with loads of features to develop your speaking, listening, writing, and reading skills. It comes with Grammer lessons that move from the most basic words to advanced sentences, quizzes to help your retention level and improve areas you are having difficulty, an AI chatbot to practice your conversational skills with, audio recordings of native speakers to get accustomed to the accent and intonation, and loads of resources available on the Ling Blog on your target audience.

What are you waiting for? Download the Ling App on Play Store and App Store today!

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