Greek Language Phrases You’ll Need While Visiting Greece

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It can take years to learn a language fluently, but that shouldn’t stop you from learning a few words or phrases ahead of your trip! It’s true that the Greek people do know English pretty well, especially in areas where there are a lot of tourists. However, you still might want to learn a few basic Greek words and phrases ahead of your trip.

Greeks love to see people try to speak their language, and you’ll definitely earn some bonus points from the people for trying things out. Here’s a few basic words and phrases you should know while in Greece:

Here are some simple Greek Language words and phrases to learn how to say:


There are a few ways to say “hello” in Greek. Both of these options are somewhat informal, with Γειά being the most information of all. However, these are the most common.

  • Hello – Γειά σου – Ya Soo
  • Hi – Γειά – Ya

Here’s a look at a bigger explanation at all the ways you could say “hello” in the Greek language.

How Are You?

In English, we tend to ask “How are you” as a polite phrase. Usually, the person indicates that they are doing “well” and give very few details. In Greece, you don’t ask someone how they are doing unless you are prepared for the extremely honest answer and explanation.

  • How are you? Πώς είσαι; Pos Eesai
  • How are you? Tι κανείς – Ti kanees (colloquial)


There’s an art to introducing yourself in the Greek language. Usually, someone starts be asking an individual’s name. Then, they obtain the name of the other individual. After it’s all done, you indicate that it was nice to meet them. Here are some vocabulary words that you’ll need:

  • What is your name? – πως σε λένε? – Pos se lene
  • My name is … – Με λένε … – Me lene ….
  • Nice to meet you. – Χάρηκα πολύ – Harika poli


These words and phrases are used mostly as greetings. Select the word or phrase for the corresponding time of day. Many people accompany this with one of the words for “hello” but this isn’t necessary.

  • Good morning – Καλημέρα – kalimera
  • Good afternoon/evening – Καλησπέρα – kalispera
  • Good night – Καληνύχτα – goodnight

Here are more details on How to Say Good Morning and How to Say Good Evening and Goodnight.


  • Yes – Ναί – Ne – This is the most common way to say “yes” in Greek.
  • Yes – μάλιστα – malista – the English equivalent is closer to “Indeed”… it is a form of yes that is used in agreement with something someone said, usually when making a point.

Visit this article for a deeper look as to how to say yes in Greek.


  • No – Οχι – Ohi

Please/ You’re welcome

The word in Greek for “please” and “you’re welcome” is the same. Use this the same as you would in English.

  • Please / You’re Welcome – Παρακαλώ – Parakalo

Excuse Me/ Sorry

  • Excuse me/ sorry – Συγνώμη – seegnomi

Good Bye

Saying goodbye is usually the last thing that happens when in conversation with someone in Greece. This is the most basic way to say it:

  • Bye – αντίο – adio

In addition, there are other ways you can express this idea and it’s covered in this article. 

While in Greece, it is a good idea to learn some of the basics of the Greek language. You’ll enjoy your vacation so much more! The good news is that you don’t need to memorize these words and phrases if you don’t want. Just refer back to this article whenever you need and use the words and phrases listed here whenever you get the chance.

The Learn Greek section on was written by Greeks to help people understand the conversational basics of the Greek language. This article is not a substitute for a professional Greek learning program, but a helpful resource for people wanting to learn simple communication in Greek.

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This post was written by Greek Boston

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