Learning how to say goodbye can be a great way to start your Chinese learning journey.
Really! Even if you’ve only just learned a few ways to say hello in Chinese, you shouldn’t forget to learn how to say goodbye. Learning a few ways to say bye in Mandarin will help you wrap up your conversations and it's an incredibly useful skill to have even if you’re still at the beginner level. Even if you can’t maintain a full conversation in Mandarin (yet!), you should know how to properly bid farewell!
Learning how to say goodbye in Chinese will help you:
- Be contextually appropriate: You wouldn’t say goodbye to an important business partner or your new in-laws with a casual “see ya!”, would you? The same is true for Chinese!
- Deliver the right kind of emotion: If you won’t be seeing a friend or family member in a while, it’s probably a good idea to let them know that you will miss them with a more heartfelt goodbye!
- Be polite in your daily life: Even if you only interact with strangers in Chinese, you should still know how to politely say goodbye after you pick up some fruit from the market or buy a cup of coffee.
- Nurture your relationships: Many ways of saying goodbye in Mandarin imply that you hope to see the person again soon. What better way to let someone know that their company is appreciated?
So, are you ready to learn how to say goodbye in Chinese? Don’t miss this invaluable lesson on your Chinese learning journey!
How to say goodbye in Mandarin Chinese
If you’re taking in-person or online Mandarin classes, you probably already know the most basic way to say goodbye in Chinese: 再见 (zài jiàn). This is one of the most common ways to say goodbye in Mandarin, and it’s also one of the most versatile. It’s neutral so it can be used in almost all situations, except maybe in highly formal settings or when you’re saying goodbye forever to someone.
|Goodbye||再见||zài jiàn||tzay jiann||Neutral|
|See you tomorrow||明天见||míng tiān jiàn||ming tiehn jiann||Neutral|
|Until next time||下次见||xià cì jiàn||shiah tsyh jiann||Neutral|
|See you later||回头见||huí tóu jiàn||hwei toe jiann||Neutral|
|See you in a little while||一会儿见||yí huì(e)r jiàn||yi huey jiann||Casual|
|Let’s chat when you’re free||有空再聊||yǒu kòng zài liáo||yeou kong tzay liau||Casual|
|Walk slowly (take care)||慢走||màn zǒu||mann tzoou||Polite|
|Have a good night||晚安||wǎn ān||woan an||Neutral|
|Farewell||告别||gào bié||gao byeh||Formal|
|Take care of yourself||照顾好自己||zhàogù hǎo zìjǐ||jaw gu how tzyh gee||Polite|
|Until we meet again||再会||zài huì||tzay huey||Business|
|Keep in touch||再联系||zài liánxì||tzay lian she||Neutral|
|I should leave||告辞||gào cí||gao tsyh||Formal|
|I’m off||我走了||wǒ zǒu le||woh tzou luh||Casual|
|I’m leaving||我走啦||wǒ zǒu la||woh tzou la||Casual|
|I must go||我得走啦||wǒ děi zǒu la||woh day tzou la||Neutral|
|(I’m) off||走了||zǒu le||tzou luh||Casual|
|I have no choice but to say goodbye||我不得不说再见了||wǒ bùdébù shuō zàijiàn le||woh boo deh boo shuo tzay jiann luh||Formal|
|Let’s do this again sometime||下次再约||xià cì zài yuē||shiah tsyh tzay yooeh||Neutral|
|Let’s do this again when you have time||有空再约||yǒu kòng zài yuē||yeou kong tzay yooeh||Neutral|
|Excuse me||失陪了||shīpéi le||shih pay luh||Polite|
|I’ll show myself out||留步||liú bù||liou boo||Polite|
|I’m hanging up||挂了啊||guà le a||guah luh ah||For phone calls|
|That’s it then||就这样||jiù zhèyàng||jiow jeh yang||For phone calls|
|Hope you see you some other time||后会有期||hòu huì yǒu qī||how huey yeou chee||When saying goodbye to someone you may not see again|
Chinese Chengyu for goodbye
Learning chengyu is one of the most exciting parts of Chinese. A chengyu is a Chinese idiom that is usually compressed into four characters. It is a handy way to express a long story that most people know with just a few key words. This is why learning Chinese involves so much more than just developing your linguistic skills — you’ll become acquainted with plenty of history and wisdom that has been passed down for millennia!
|To travel in the direction of the wind||一路顺风||yí lù shùn fēng||yi loo shuenn fehng||Have a safe and pleasant trip!|
|Travel on a safe road||一路平安||yí lù píng ān||yi loo pyng ahn||Have a safe and pleasant trip!|
|To be separated in life and death||生离死别||shēng lí sǐ bié||sheng lee syh byeh||To part ways forever|
|The shrike and the swallow each fly||劳燕分飞||láo yàn fēn fēi||lau yann fen fay||Used by couples when they are leaving or going to be separated for a while|
Create your own way of saying goodbye in Chinese
One of the most fun parts of learning a new language is being able to engage with it, so why not create your own way of saying goodbye in Chinese? You already know that 再见 means “see you next time,” but what if you want to be more specific? If you already know when that “next time” is, then you can specify it!
You can use the following structure: [specific time] + 见
Here are some examples:
|See you tomorrow||明天见||míngtiān jiàn||ming tian jiann|
|See you on Friday||周五见||zhōuwǔ jiàn||jou woo jiann|
|See you next week||下周见||xiàzhōu jiàn||shiah jou jiann|
|See you next month||下个月见||xiàgè yuè jiàn||shiah geh jiann|
|See you this afternoon||下午见||xiàwǔ jiàn||shiah woo jiann|
See you next blog!
Although you’re learning how to say goodbye in Mandarin, we hope this is just the beginning for you. This wonderful language has tons of mind-bogglingly interesting grammar structures, idioms, and phrases — enough to keep you studying for an entire lifetime if you so desire!
But don’t worry, now that you know how to say hello and goodbye in Chinese, you’re one step closer to having exciting conversations in this beautiful language. With consistency and some dedication, you’ll soon be able to use your Chinese skills to meet new people, order food, and even talk about your favorite animals!
If you haven’t yet, be sure to check out our guide to the Chinese writing system and these ten expert-backed tips for learning Chinese characters. We regularly publish helpful guides like these in our Mandarin blog, so bookmark the page and let us help you improve your Chinese!