Tired of saying the same old ‘Good Morning!’ to your loved ones or colleagues each day? Why not learn some of these alternatives? We have found a whole bunch of ways to spice up your morning greetings using languages from around the world.
Starting here on our own doorstep, we have some obvious choices. There’s the Afrikaans ‘goeie more’ which translates directly as ‘good morning’; the isiZulu ‘sawubona’ meaning ‘I see you’ and the isiXhosa ‘molweni’ meaning ‘greetings to all’.
Moving upwards into central Africa, the greetings get even more colourful with the Swahili ‘Habari za asubuh’ and Chechewan ‘m’mawa wabwino’ which is ‘good morning’ in the Malawian mother tongue. Both the Congo and DRC have held onto the French ‘Bonjour’ whilst the Namibians still exclaim the German ‘guten Morgen’ around town.
Mornings in northern Africa are littered with other European greetings such as the Spanish ‘¡buenos días’ and Portugeuse ‘bom dia’, however, more commonly you will hear the Arabic chant ‘sabah alkhyr’ filling the streets of Morocco and Algeria; whilst in Egypt ‘SabāH il-‘išTa’ translates to ‘morning of cream’ or a ‘wonderful morning to you’.
Moving across into the East, the Mandarin morning greeting of ‘Zǎo ān’ translates as ‘you good’ whilst the less formal Japanese way to say hi in the morning is ‘Hikōshiki ohayō’. The people of Vietnam say ‘chào buổi sáng’ whilst those living on the islands known as Indonesia utter ‘Salamet Pagi’ but only until 11am when as far as they are concerned, the morning has gone.
Wherever you find yourself, wherever you may be, giving a morning greeting is one way to warmly welcome, recognise and acknowledge those with whom you share your day.