Good Evening in German - How To Use Evening Greetings in German In The Evening and Night.

Good Evening in German - How To Use Evening Greetings in German In The Evening and Night.

In short: 


Good evening in German would be Guten Abend. 


How to pronounce Guten Abend? It is pronounced "Goo-tehn Ah-bend." For those who prefer the IPA phonetic spelling:


  • /ˌɡuːtn̩/ / ˈaːbn̩t / 
  • /ˌɡuːtn̩/ / ˈaːbənt /


In the following free German lesson, we delve further into the different ways how to say good evening in German. German is not only spoken in Germany, and there are regional varieties in the German language to keep in mind when greeting people. 


What Does Guten Abend Literally Mean


Guten is derived from Gut, the German word for good. Combine it with Abend, which means evening, for the winning combination Guten Abend, or good evening. 


When Do You Say Good Evening in Germany


Guten Abend is generally spoken at the beginning of the evening, around 6 PM is a good rule of thumb. 


Gute Nacht, meaning good night, can also be said from 5 PM on, but usually means one of two things: 


  1. Goodbye - for the rest of the day, because we're leaving work, the bar, etc. and we won't see each other anymore today.
  2. Goodnight - Sleep well, because we're going to bed.


Other German Greetings Starting With Good

You have the following standard salutations along the day. They can be used as a general way of saying hello during daytime hours. With each greeting, we give a short description of when it is appropriate to use that specific greeting.


Guten Morgen:

You can say this approximately until noon. It is literally equivalent to "good morning."

Guten Tag:

Is the general greeting to use from starting around noon until the begin of the evening. Literally translated as "good day," it is the equivalent of the English "good afternoon." Despite, its literal meaning "good day," it could be used all during the day.

"Guten Abend":

You use this from the beginning of the evening. Literally translated it would be equivalent to "good evening."

"Gute Nacht":

You can say this when going to sleep, or as a farewell for that evening. It is the literal equivalent of "good night."



    Germans do not say Good Afternoon. In German, this would be Guten Nachmittag, but it is very rarely used, if all. 



    How To Say Good evening In Low German


    In Low German, good evening would be Goden Avend instead of Guten Abend. Notice how much closer it is to the Dutch goedenavond than it is to Standard German.


    • Goden Dag - Good day
    • Goden Morgen - Good morning
    • Goden Avend - Good evening



    How To Say Good Evening In Swiss German (Schwyzertüütsch)


    While similar, it differs slightly from the Standard German language in spelling and pronunciation. Schweizerdeutsch is a spoken language, not a formal written language. That means that there are significant variations in spelling, and even in the characters used, from region to region.


    How To Greet In Swiss German


    • Grüezi - Hello  
    • Guete Morge - Good morning  
    • Guete Tag - Good afternoon  
    • Guete Obe (g) (d) - Good evening
    • Uf Widerluege - Good-bye


    How To Pronounce Guten Abend In Switzerland


    1. In and around Zürich, the dialect equivalent is pronounced "Guten ah-big." 
    2. In Basel and the surrounding area, the pronunciation would be: "Guten oh-ba." 
    3. In St. Gallen, it is pronounced "Guten aw-bed." 





    Hopefully, you now know about the different Guten Abend's that the German language is rich. 


    If you have any questions or addendums, please let us know below in the comments!


    German frequency dictionaries - Learn German Fast and quickly

    Want to know more useful vocabulary? These German frequency dictionary books contain the most common German words, with IPA phonetic spelling and German to English example sentences, showing you the German words being used in context.



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