As a beginner English student, you learn greetings like “Hello, how are you?” But, as you progress and try translating greetings that are familiar in your native language, they don’t always translate well in English. Let’s take a look at 3 greetings to stop using in English, because they’re inappropriate! Be sure to watch the video and download the bonus transcript below.
1 – Hello my love.
In some cultures, especially where I live in Brazil, this is totally normal. I’ve heard people say this to a stranger when they stopped to ask for directions. However, in English in North America, it might make people think you’re romantically interested in them.
2 – Hello M’am / Sir.
In some cultures, this might show respect. To me, it makes me feel like I’m eighty years old. Just a respectful “excuse me,” or “hello!” is fine for me!
3 – Hello my friend.
When someone says this to me in English, I know 2 things for sure. 1 – They are 100% not my friend. 2 – They probably want to sell me something. I know it’s normal to say this in many languages, but in English it is not. Simply say “hello” or “hey there.”
4 – Hello teacher.
I talked about this in a previous English lesson a couple weeks ago (link below). Basically, teacher is like any profession. You wouldn’t address your accountant as “Hello, accountant,” would you? So, we don’t call our teacher “teacher” to their face. We just say their name!
Read more about words to stop using in English in this post: 5 Things to STOP Saying in English for Fluency