German Language Blog

How to say goodbye in German Posted by on Oct 4, 2016 in Language

Last week I finished my Ausbildung (education) to become a fitness instructor and had to say goodbye to my classmates that I’ve spent almost every day with for the past three years! We had an Abschiedsfeier (leaving party) and after having to say goodbye to everyone it inspired me to write a post about the word “goodbye”.

In German there are many different ways how to say goodbye. Here is a vocabulary list so you know exactly what to say at the right time:

Tschüss                                                          bye – a short and casual way of saying bye

Auf Wiedersehen                                     see you again soon – “wieder” meaning „again“and “sehen” meaning “to see”

Auf Wiederhören                                        speak to you soon – “horen” means “to hear”, this would be used if you are telephoning with someone.

Bis später                                                       See you later

Bis nachher                                                   See you afterwards

Bis dann                                                              literally translates to “until then”

Bis zum nächsten Mal                                    until the next time

Bis bald                                                              bye for now – “bis” meaning “till” and “bald” meaning “soon”

Servus                                                                hello/bye – the Bavarian way of saying hello or goodbye

Schönen Tag noch                                           have a nice rest of the day

Es war schön dich kennen zu lernen       it was nice to have met you

Lebewohl                                                           farewell

Ich werde dich vermissen                             I will miss you

Mach’s gut                                                        take care

Ciao                                                                    bye – this is Italian but Germans also use it very often to say goodbye


Photo by Ralph Aichinger on Flickr. (CC BY 2.0)

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About the Author: Larissa

Hello I'm Larissa. I live in Germany and I am half German and half English. I love sharing my passion for Germany with you through my posts! Apart from writing posts I teach fitness classes in Munich.


  1. Patricia:

    Hello there! I’m Scottish but lived in the Black Forest area some years ago and I remember many people said ‘Adé’ when saying goodbye. I guess this comes from the French ‘adieu’, since the area borders with France.

    I don’t get back to Germany very often (live in Canada now) but I do keep in touch with friends. I enjoy reading your blog – sadly I do find I’m losing my German skills, so it’s good to read something like this. (I also sometimes watch German tv shows on the ZDF Mediathek!)

  2. Jane Caron:

    Congratulations on the Ausbildung, and thank you for your post. I also live in Bavaria, and people in my little town often say Auf Wiederschauen instead of Auf Wiedersehen. Friends, of course, say Tschuess or Ciao or one of the many “bis” partings that you listed. One more “bis” parting is “bis gleich” (until very soon), which is used, for example, when you tell a friend by telephone that you are on your way to their house.

    I have lived in Germany for three years, and I am only now starting to feel comfortable speaking German. As an old dog (49), I had expected it would take time for me to learn this new trick. My children (now 10 and 13), however, picked up the language in school in a matter of months and now speak German as easily as English.

    Thank you and the other folks who post about the German language! I find these posts a truly fun way to learn.

  3. Orlando Campos:

    Sehr gut unterricht!!!!!!

  4. Tilak:

    my favorite is Lebewohl. It was Wotan’s farewell to Brunhilde .

  5. Ann:

    Hello,I’m a Kenyan.I find it interesting learning the language.I happened to have toured the country in 2013 and learnt a few German words like how to greet people,say welcome and even wishing one a safe journey.But had forgoten how to say good bye.Your post was therefor helpful.Thanks!

  6. Alison Carter:

    Hi I have an uncle living in Germany. He’s dual nationality. Being in the raf. Chose to live in Germany. I know very basic German. Ev

  7. Alison Carter:

    Hadn’t finished lol. Even though learnt German for 2 years I still know little. But I think it’s because we learnt French at same time! Having two lesson of each a week.