(#18) Thank you, Sorry, Goodbye / 谢谢你, 对不起, 再见

Thank you for sticking around for the past 18 posts. I need to say 谢谢你 xie4 xie4 ni3.

That brings me to one of the phrase that I want to go through today. 谢 xie4 on its own means ‘thank’ and saying 谢谢你 xie4 xie4 ni3 is very natural in mandarin, probably because Chinese are pretty polite.

Saying 谢谢你 xie4 xie4 ni3 is polite, while 谢谢 xie4 xie4 is casual and friendly. If you happen to be writting a speech and you need a word that elevates the meaning, you can use 感谢 gan3 xie4, such as 我要感谢我的妈妈 wo3 yao4 gan3 xie4 wo3 de4 ma1 ma1 – I want to thank my mother.


To say sorry, you can say 对不起 dui4 bu4 qi3, or 抱歉 bao4 qian4. The former is more commonly used, while the latter is more formal, and more frequently used with customers or clients.

Remember the post on 很 hen3 and 真的很 zhen1 de4 hen3? You can use it with  谢谢你 xie4 xie4 ni3 and 对不起 dui4 bu4 qi3 to increase the intensity of the meaning.

谢谢你 xie4 xie4 ni3
很谢谢你 hen3 xie4 xie4 ni3
真的很谢谢你 zhen1 de4 hen3 xie4 xie4 ni3

对不起 dui4 bu4 qi3
很对不起 hen3 dui4 bu4 qi3
真的很对不起 zhen1 de4 hen3 dui4 bu4 qi3


One last helpful phrase for the post: 再见 zai4 jian4 good bye

再见 zai4 jian4 is literally ‘again-meet’, so it is the same as ‘See you’. In chinese we had also adopted the english ‘byebye’ into our language, and is written as 拜拜 or  掰掰。You can just say ‘byebye’ and most chinese people would understand. I say most, because after all, it is an adopted word.

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