Learning how to say ‘thank you’ in Korean is one of the most important things to learn when studying the language. When people first start to learn Korean, they are often surprised that there are more ways to say ‘thank you’ than there are in English. The key is learning when to use which! Not to worry, if you follow the Korean etiquette rules, you are sure not to offend anybody.
Today, we will learn how to say ‘thank you’ in Korean properly.
Once you understand the subtleties in the various situations, listen for ‘thank you’s in your day-to-day Korean conversations. It’ll all start to come together and will become second nature to you. We also have a free PDF guide that you can take with you on the go. Check it out below:
Get How to Say Thank You in Korean Free PDF
One last thing, we’re giving you the 한글 (hangeul), the Korean alphabet, and the romanization for these words. It’s better if you learn to read the Korean alphabet so you can learn Korean better and faster.
With that out of the way, are we ready to get started? Let’s get to it!
Most of the time, you will only need to use one of these two expressions:
This expression is a formal version of the Korean verb 감사하다 (gamsahada) which means “to thank.”
This is the most common word used for saying ‘thank you’ in Korean. It is quite formal and polite, so can be used with strangers and people older than you.
You can use this word when saying ‘thank you’ in a restaurant, convenience store, or taxi. It is usually said quite quickly, so the pronunciation might sometimes sound to you like ‘gamsamnida’. But they are actually saying ‘gamsahamnida.’
시간 내주셔서 대단히 감사합니다. (sigan naejusyeoseo daedanhi gamsahamnida)
Thank you very much for your time.
도와 주셔서 감사합니다. (dowa jusyeoseo gamsahamnida)
Thank you for helping me.
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This word can be used in the same situations as 감사합니다 (gamsahamnida). There is a slight difference in nuance but it is so small that you don’t need to worry about it. Try to mix it up so you get used to both expressions of gratitude!
This expression comes from the Korean descriptive verb 고맙다 (gomapda) meaning “to be thankful or grateful.”
그렇게 말씀해 주시니 고맙습니다. (geureoke malsseumhae jusini gomapseumnida)
Thank you for saying so.
Although 99% of the time you will be speaking in the polite ‘-요’ form of Korean rather than the formal, stuffy ‘-입니다’ form of Korean, you should generally still use the words 감사합니다 (gamsahamnida) or 고맙습니다 (gomapseumnida). The only time that you should break this rule is when you are talking to people who you are close to.
If you are close to somebody, but they are older than you, then you can say 고마워요 (gomawoyo) to express your thanks to them. This word, like 고맙습니다 (gomapseumnida), is from 고맙다 (gomapda) and is just conjugated differently!
We know what you may be wondering! It is also possible to say 감사해요 (gamsahaeyo) at this level of politeness, but very few people say this.
정말 고마워요. (jeongmal gomawoyo)
Thank you so much.
알려줘서 고마워요. (allyeojwoseo gomawoyo)
Thank you for letting me know.
When talking to somebody you are close to who is the same age or younger than you, then you can say 고마워 (gomawo). These might be people who are close friends, or siblings.
Again, this form is preferred over 감사해 (gamsahae).
난 괜찮아, 고마워. (nan gwaenchana, gomawo)
I’m ok, thanks!
선물을 사줘서 고마워. (seonmuleul sajwoseo gomawo)
Thank you for buying me a present.
If all of this seems a bit confusing then follow these simple rules when deciding how to say ‘thank you’ in Korean:
|고마워요||Older people who you are close to|
|고마워||Younger people who you are close to|
When in doubt, remember what Mom always says—it is better to be polite than impolite! Therefore, if you only learn one way to say ‘thank you’, then learn 감사합니다 (gamsahamnida).
Now it’s your turn. Get out there and give these expressions a try and put a smile on the faces of those you run into. Happy thanking!
Let us know in the comments below how you made use of the word ‘thank you’ in Korean conversations!
Want more Korean phrases? Go to our Korean Phrases Page for a complete list!
When someone is nice, you are polite and say, 'Thank you,' or 'Thanks.' When someone goes out of their way to help, you say, 'Thank you very much' or 'Thank you so much.' Just like this, people have a few ways to say 'thank you' in Spanish and we are going to first learn those you can use with anyone. Then we will learn other ways that you should only use in the context of formal or informal situations. Let's begin.
You want to thank someone for showing you a location, giving up their seat for you, or letting you go ahead of them in a line. In public situations like this, as well as in private situations, you can use any of the following options, but keep in mind that you should always accompany these words in a nice and friendly tone to really convey your message. Here are the most basic ways to thank someone:
Note:Mil gracias has a literal translation into English so that you understand what it means, but we don't have an equivalent in English.
If you wish, add the preposition por after any of these expressions and then you can add the reason why you're thanking them. The reason can be a noun or a verb. Let's see, for instance, what Paula writes to her boss for the Christmas gift she received:
Similarly, Andrea is Paula's boss, and when she gave each of her employees a bottle of wine, she wrote the following message:
In this case, we have a verb.
By the way, a common expression to thank someone for a bunch of stuff they did for you is to say:
For the expression gracias por todo, make sure to only use it when someone really has done a lot of stuff for you. For instance, you would not say this to a stranger who helps you with quick information in the street. Now, let's move on to 'thank you' expressions in informal situations.
When you want to thank a family member or friend for a favor they did, a gift, a kindness, etc., you can use the expressions for all occasions. Also, since you probably address them with tú (you, informal, singular), you can use these:
As you can see, we are conjugating the verb agradecer (ah-grah-deh-SEHR) which is 'to thank.'
If you are speaking for yourself and others, make sure to say this instead:
If you are thanking more than one person at the time, make note of this important issue: if you are in Latin America, people use ustedes (you, formal, plural) even for family and friends, which means you would say:
Of course, make sure to say les agradecemos instead if you are thanking more than one person for yourself and others.
Now, if you are in Spain the story is different. People use vosotros there as this is 'you, informal, plural.' In this case:
Same as before, say os agradecemos instead if you are thanking for yourself and others.
Finally, instead of mucho you could say inmensamente (een-mehn-sah-MEHN-teh). This word means 'immensely' and it conveys a feeling of huge gratitude, AND you can also add a noun or verb afterwards to specify the reason for your gratitude.
Another less common way nowadays is dar las gracias (to give thanks):
Use damos (DAH-mohs) if you are speaking for someone else as well, and os for thanking more than one person.
Certain relationships are formal by nature. For example, your boss, doctor, professor, a stranger, etc., require the use of usted (you, formal, singular) in Spanish. This means that your way of thanking is formal as well. You would say:
Same as for informal situations, you must say le agradecemos or les agradecemos if you are including others in the thanking. Also, add a noun or verb after these phrases if you wish.
The less common way nowadays of dar las gracias (to give thanks) is also applicable in formal situations:
Use damos (DAH-mohs) if you are speaking for someone else as well and les for thanking multiple people.
In written notes for really formal situations, such as when Paula writes to the CEO of the company to thank for all her support, she writes:
You can say mi agradecimiento (mee ah-grah-deh-see-mee-EHN-toh) instead of mi gratitud. Agradecimiento is another word for 'gratitude.'
The most basic way to thank in Spanish is by saying gracias (thanks). For all occasions, you could also say:
Add por after and the reason for thanking the person if you wish.
For informal situations:
Use te agradecemos (we thank you) if you are speaking for someone else as well or os for thanking multiple people if you are in Spain. Otherwise, say les instead of os.
Similarly, say le agradezco for formal situations. Say le agradecemos if someone else is included or les for thanking multiple people.
Synonyms for say thank you at Thesaurus.com with free online thesaurus, antonyms, and definitions. Find descriptive alternatives for say thank you.
Numerous situations arise every single day that warrant our genuine appreciation and gratitude. But, most times, we allow a quick and standard "thanks" that's mumbled in passing to fit the bill.
Of course, a "thank you" is always appreciated -- but, we've all become so used to hearing those two little words, they've all but lost their meaning in many cases.
When someone does something that inspires you to offer an expression that seems even more heartfelt and sincere, you might find yourself struggling to demonstrate your thankfulness -- without relying on those oft-repeated words.
So, here are four better ways to thank someone (that don't involve those two little words you hear so often).
Yes, this is essentially what the phrase "thank you" means. But, explicitly saying it to someone who helped you out can have a much greater impact than relying on that phrase that's uttered over and over again.
You can also alter this phrase to say, "I really appreciate you," to further demonstrate that you not only recognize that person's efforts to help you out, but that you're also extremely grateful for his or her assistance. You're not only appreciative of what was done -- you're appreciative of who did it.
Recognizing results is another great way to sincerely show your gratitude. What's an easy way to accomplish that? Explaining how that person helped you out is the best place to start.
Perhaps a teammate grabbed the reins for a part of a project you kept pushing to the back burner. A simple statement like, "You're a lifesaver! My plate has been so full, and having that off my hands helps so much," shows your appreciation -- while also adequately highlighting the impact that person's help had on you.
There's no better way to show your gratitude than by being willing to return the favor when the opportunity arises. So, posing this question is an immediate way to show that you're more than ready act on your appreciation -- rather than just talk about it.
In most cases, people will respond to this with something like, "Don't worry about it!" But, that doesn't mean asking it is a total waste. Again, it's an effective way to make that person feel especially recognized and valued.
Alright, perhaps you'll consider this last point a bit of a cheater -- after all, it's not an actual phrase that you can use to replace that classic "thank you". However, this tip has a huge impact, making it worthy of mention regardless.
As you already know, saying and showing are two very different things. So, if you feel the need to go the extra mile with your level of appreciation, consider acting on it. Write a handwritten note or call out that person's contributions in a meeting with your team.
Do what you need to do to not only say you're grateful -- but show it.
There are plenty of times you want to express heartfelt appreciation. But, sometimes a standard "thank you" doesn't seem like quite enough.
In those cases, use one of the above four options, and you're sure to get your gratitude across in a way that's effective and genuine.
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.
Some daily situations – at work and in our personal lives – require more formal language. And this is often true in writing.
For example, if you’re expressing thankfulness or gratitude in a speech at a wedding, a formal reception or networking event, or in a lecture, it would be appropriate to choose more formal language.
Or if you’re writing thank you notes to friends and family members; if you’re sending an email to say thank you to a new client; or writing to another company, again, you’ll want to use these more formal expressions.
I’m so grateful for… / I’m so thankful for… / Many thanks for…
Writing some thank you notes to friends who helped you after the birth of a baby or while you were helping a sick parent?
I truly appreciate… / Thank you ever so much for… / It’s so kind of you to…
Are you sending an email to everyone on your team at work for working overtime or volunteering to work on a Saturday?
Thank you for going through the trouble to… / Thank you for taking the time to…
Did one of your business contacts take some extra time to give you some information you needed? Send an email to say thank you…
I’m eternally grateful for… / I cannot thank you enough for… / I want you to know how much I value… / Words cannot describe how grateful I am for… / Please accept my deepest thanks for…
Sometimes we have very difficult times in our lives. Maybe a loved one becomes ill. Someone passes away. Or perhaps you lose a job.
Tragedies happen. These can be terribly stressful times. If you are writing someone to thank them to help you, these expressions are most appropriate.
Synonyms for thank you at Thesaurus.com with free online thesaurus, antonyms, and definitions. MORE RELATED WORDS FOR THANK YOU.
Thank yous come in all shapes and sizes. A thank you can be a deeply felt expression of gratitude towards someone who has done you a favour, given you a gift, or done something very special for you – this is a special kind of thank you. Or it can be a simple and polite expression, the type you use every day, to thank the bus driver, the waiter, the cashier who has just served you.
Whatever level of thanks you are trying to express, the English language has a word for it – you certainly don’t need to stick to the simple ‘thank you.’ Here we take a look at alternatives that you can use to expand your English vocabulary, and allow you to express yourself better the next time you’re trying to give thanks to someone.
The most common way of saying thank you in English is simply a shortened version of the original thank you. You’ll hear ‘thanks’ being used in almost every setting, among families, friends, and strangers. Shortening words and phrases is something quite common in the English language, especially in less formal settings, helping conversation to flow more naturally. If you want to express even more gratitude you can say ‘Thanks very much’ too.
I owe you one
Here’s a ‘thank you’ phrase that’s used when you want to express gratitude for a favour someone has done you. When people say they owe you one, the ‘one’ they’re referring to is ‘a favour’ – so they mean that they owe you a favour in return for the good deed you have done them. You’ll often hear it tacked on to the end of ‘thank you’ as a means of expressing even more gratitude to a person – ‘thanks, Bob, I owe you one!’
This phrase tends to be used in informal settings, for small favours that can be returned easily in future. So you might say ‘I owe you one’ to a work colleague who has brought you a coffee or helped you out with a project, rather than to someone who has just done something far more important, like save your life!
This is a very British way of expressing thanks, but its roots may actually lie in the Dutch language. Ta is a slang term for thanks that can be traced back to the 18th Century. Much of the English language actually comes from the old Dutch and Jutland languages, and ta is believed to be a shortened form of the Dutch word tak, meaning thanks. Somewhere along the way the ‘k’ was dropped, and it became ta.
It’s still used today as a cheery and friendly way to express thanks in an everyday way. You wouldn’t say ‘ta for saving my life!’ to someone who had just saved your life, but you would say ‘ta for the cup of tea!’ to a friend who’s just had you round for a drink. You might also hear people say ‘ta muchly!’ as a way of expressing more thanks too.
If you say cheers to someone in America they’re more likely to think of the bar-based TV show, or that you’re making a toast. Cheers is also used when making a toast in the UK, but is also now officially the most popular way to say thanks in the UK too. It’s another one of these English language words with more than one meaning. Cheers is an informal way of saying thank you and you can use it in all manner of situations, especially when thanking a stranger for doing something nice for you, like holding a door open for you, or to a taxi driver when they drop you at your destination.
This is a term used when you’re making a public statement of gratitude and when you want others to know of your gratitude towards someone. This one is used a lot in the hip-hop community and on the dance scene, online and in the music world generally – ‘we’d like to give a shout-out to all our loyal fans.’ It first emerged as a thank you phrase in the 1990s, apparently when a video DJ on TV in the USA presented shows from nightclubs across the country, getting audience members to give shout-outs to their friends at home. So this might not be a phrase you’ll use yourself, but it’s definitely one you might read or hear.
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Wil is a writer, teacher, learning technologist and keen language learner. He’s taught English in classrooms and online for nearly 10 years, trained teachers in using classroom and web technology, and written e-learning materials for several major websites. He speaks four languages and is currently looking for another one to start learning.
Bright pink thank you note with yellow words in an orange envelope. Other expressions reflect slightly different conceptions of what's involved.
YozshullSeptember 07, 2018 11:10 AM
Excuse for that I interfere � At me a similar situation. Let's discuss.