Guide on How to Say Hi in Turkish Pronunciations

Welcome to this guide on how to greet someone with a warm “hi” in Turkish! In this article, you’ll learn both formal and informal ways of saying “hi” in Turkish, along with some useful tips and examples to help you pronounce these greetings accurately. So let’s dive right in!

Formal Greetings:

When it comes to formal greetings in Turkish, it’s important to show respect and politeness. Here are a few ways to say “hi” formally:

1. Merhaba (Mehr-hah-bah):

Merhaba is the most common and versatile way to say “hi” in Turkish. It can be used in almost any situation, whether you are greeting someone you know or meeting someone for the first time. Remember to stress the second syllable “ha” while pronouncing it.

Example: Merhaba, nasılsınız? (Hello, how are you?)

2. Selam (Seh-lahm):

Selam is another formal greeting commonly used in Turkish. It’s slightly less formal compared to “merhaba” and is often used among friends, acquaintances, and colleagues.

Example: Selam, iyi günler! (Hi, good day!)

Informal Greetings:

Informal greetings in Turkish are used among friends, family members, and people you are familiar with. These greetings are more relaxed and reflect the closeness of your relationship. Here are a couple of examples:

1. Selamın Aleyküm (Seh-lahm-uhn Ah-leh-koom):

Selamın Aleyküm is the Turkish equivalent to “peace be upon you” and is the traditional way to greet someone in a friendly manner. It’s commonly used among Muslims but also widely understood in secular Turkish society.

Example: Selamın Aleyküm, nasılsın? (Peace be upon you, how are you?)

2. Merhaba arkadaşım (Mehr-hah-bah ar-kah-dah-shuhm):

If you want to greet your friend, you can use “Merhaba arkadaşım,” which translates to “Hello, my friend.” This is a warm and familiar way of saying “hi” to someone close to you.

Example: Merhaba arkadaşım, neler yapıyorsun? (Hello, my friend, what are you up to?)

Useful Tips for Pronunciation:

1. Practice Vowel Sounds:

Turkish has a rich vowel system, so pay attention to the pronunciation of each vowel. For example, “a” is pronounced like the “u” in “cut,” “ı” as the “u” in “pull,” “e” as the “e” in “let,” and “i” as the “i” in “hit.”

2. Master the Letter “ğ”:

The letter “ğ” is not pronounced as a separate sound but rather elongates the preceding vowel. It acts as a sort of buffer, indicating that the vowel sound before it should be lengthened slightly.

3. Emphasize Syllables:

While speaking Turkish, remember to stress the second syllable of most words, including greetings like “merhaba” and “selam.” It will help you sound more native-like.


Congratulations! You’ve completed this guide on how to say “hi” in Turkish. Now you know various ways to greet someone both formally and informally. Remember, practicing pronunciation is key to sounding like a native speaker. So go ahead, use these greetings with confidence, and make lasting impressions on your Turkish-speaking friends, colleagues, or acquaintances.

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