English Language Blog

Goodbye in English Posted by on May 23, 2013 in English Language, English Vocabulary

So long, farewell…no, wait, don’t go yet I am just getting started!  What I meant to say was “hello” and “welcome” to today’s post about saying “goodbye!” To start out take a listen to this song from the classic American film The Sound of Music in which the children in the film are singing about saying goodbye/good night. Listening to this song you will hear a number of different ways to say goodbye in English (and one in German – the movie is about a family in Austria after all!)

In this song you heard “so long” and “farewell,” which are both nice, semi-formal ways of saying ‘goodbye.’ Another semi-formal way to say ‘goodbye’ is “take care.” All three of these ways of saying goodbye are good to use with a person you have recently met or don’t know well. Below I have a list of informal and fun ways to say ‘goodbye’ to people you know a little better.

Let’s take a look:

“See ya” or “See you later” or “Bye for now”

These are all ways of saying ‘goodbye’ to someone you expect to see again soon.

“Take it easy.”

This is a nice way to say ‘goodbye’ while expressing the hope things go well and are not too hard for the person as they continue on. It is like saying, ‘enjoy your life.’

“Have a good one.”

This is essentially telling someone to ‘have a good day’ or that you hope they have a good day.

“Catch you later.”

This is a relaxed and informal way of saying ‘goodbye’ to someone you expect to see again.

“Peace out”

This is a slang way of saying goodbye, that is sometimes, but not always, accompanied by someone showing a peace sign (using the pointer and middle fingers of their hand).


Americans think of this as a British way of saying ‘goodbye,’ but it can be used on both sides of the Atlantic or wherever you are in the world.


This is a silly or funny way to say ‘goodbye.’ By saying this you might make someone laugh :).

“See you later, alligator.”

This is a way of saying ‘goodbye’ that children often use, but so do adults who are saying ‘goodbye’ to children. This rhyming ‘goodbye’ expression is often followed by another rhyme. Which you can see in the following conversation:

A: “I’m going now.  See you later, alligator!”
B: “In a while, crocodile!”

Alright, now it is time to say goodbye for real. I hope you enjoyed this post and will be back again soon to learn more English that you can use on an everyday basis. Don’t forget to also check out all the resources available to you at www.transparent.com as you continue on your English language learning journey.

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About the Author: Gabriele

Hi there! I am one of Transparent Language's ESL bloggers. I am a 32-year-old native English speaker who was born and raised in the United States. I am living in Washington, DC now, but I have lived all over the US and also spent many years living and working abroad. I started teaching English as a second language in 2005 after completing a Master's in Applied Linguists and a Certificate in English Language Teaching to Adults' (CELTA). Since that time I have taught ESL in the United States at the community college and university level. I have also gone on to pursue my doctorate in psychology and now I also teach courses in psychology. I like to stay connected to ESL learners around the world through Transparent Languages ESL Blog. Please ask questions and leave comments on the blog and I will be sure to answer them.