How to Say Congratulations in Icelandic: A Comprehensive Guide

Congratulations! Whether it’s a graduation, promotion, or any other milestone, expressing your joy and admiration in the right way is essential. If you’re looking to say “congratulations” in Icelandic, you’ve come to the right place. In this guide, we’ll explore both the formal and informal ways to convey your congratulations, along with tips, examples, and even regional variations if necessary.

Formal Ways to Say Congratulations in Icelandic

When it comes to formal situations, it’s important to use respectful language. Here are some phrases you can use to congratulate someone formally in Icelandic:

  • Til hamingju – This phrase literally translates to “to happiness” and is the most common way to say “congratulations” in Icelandic. It’s suitable for both personal and professional situations.
  • Ég óska þér til hamingju – This phrase means “I wish you congratulations” and is a formal way to express your joy.

Informal Ways to Say Congratulations in Icelandic

For less formal occasions or when congratulating friends or family, you can choose a more casual approach. Here are a few options you can use:

  • Til hamingju með – In this informal phrase, “með” means “with.” For instance, if you want to say “Congratulations with your new job,” you can say “Til hamingju með nýja starfið.”
  • Ágúst – This word simply means “congratulations” and is a commonly used informal way to express joy and admiration.

Tips for Using Congratulations Phrases in Icelandic

Inflection and Pronunciation

It’s not only about knowing the words, but also how to pronounce them with the correct inflection. Icelandic is known for its unique pronunciation, so here are a few tips:

Remember that the letter “g” in “hamingju” is pronounced in the back of the throat, like a soft “k” sound. Practice saying it out loud to get the pronunciation just right.

Adjective Agreement

In Icelandic, adjectives have to agree with the gender of the noun they describe. When congratulating someone, it’s important to keep this in mind. Here’s an example:

If you’re congratulating a man, you can say “Til hamingju, þú ert frábær!” (Congratulations, you are great!). However, if you’re congratulating a woman, the adjective changes to “frábær” to match the gender, so you would say “Til hamingju, þú ert frábær!”

Using Informal Phrases with Close Friends and Family

When using informal phrases, remember to consider the level of familiarity with the person you are congratulating. For close friends and family, you can be more relaxed and casual. However, in professional or unfamiliar settings, it’s safer to stick with the formal phrases mentioned earlier.

Examples of Congratulations Phrases in Icelandic

Formal Examples:

Til hamingju með prófið! – Congratulations on the exam!

Ég óska þér til hamingju með nýja starfinu. – I wish you congratulations on your new job.

Informal Examples:

Til hamingju með afmælið! – Congratulations on your birthday!

Ágúst með það! – Congrats on that!

Regional Variations

In Icelandic, regional variations are not common when it comes to saying “congratulations.” The phrases mentioned earlier are understood and used throughout the country.


Congratulating someone in Icelandic is a wonderful way to show your appreciation and support. Now that you’ve learned the formal and informal ways to say “congratulations” in Icelandic, as well as useful tips and examples, you can confidently express your joy in various situations, from personal accomplishments to professional milestones. Remember to adjust your approach based on the formality of the situation and your level of familiarity with the person you are congratulating. Til hamingju!

Written by Rebecca Debbie

Halló! Ég er Rebecca. My lifelong passion for languages led me to fall in love with the rich, melodic tones of Icelandic. I've written comprehensive guides on how to communicate effectively in this vibrant language, bringing "Ætlaðu að læra íslensku?" ("Do you want to learn Icelandic?") to life for countless enthusiasts. When I'm not exploring the exquisite landscapes of Reykjavik, you'll find me enjoying a good book with my cat (köttur) by my side, or sipping a cup of deliciously brewed coffee (kaffi). My mission lies in uniting cultures through language. Áfram Ísland!

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