If you want to practice your Spanish, you need to talk. If you want to talk, you need to say hello first. There are different ways to say hello and goodbye. Each one has its own context and implies different things. Here, a little list of greetings in Spanish. Practice them!
Hola – You already know this one! Is the most common and basic greeting. You can conbine it with other phrases.
¿Qué hacés? / ¿Cómo andás? / ¿Cómo te va? / ¿Qué tal? / ¿Cómo estás? –(How are you?, How are you donig?, What´s up?) In Spanish an answer to these questions is not expected. Normally, you can answer with another question:¿Cómo estás vos?.Ironically, we use these phrases to show intrest, but never expect an answer. They are just a formula.
Buenos días / Buenas tardes / Buenas noches – You can use them for more formal situations or for greeting people you just meet. Buenos días is before 12 am, buenas tardesuntil 7 pm and buenas noches from 7 pm.
Buenas – It is a short version of buenas tardes or buenas noches. It is used when you are entering somewhere or you want to say hello quickly or just let the others know you’ve arrived.
Encantado / mucho gusto – You can use them when you meet somone for the fisrt time.Chau – Simple, basicgoodbye.
Hasta luego – If you are certain that you are going to see the other person that same day, you can use hasta luego.
Hasta mañana – If you are certain that you are going to see the other person that next day, you can use hasta mañana.
Hasta el lunes / martes/ la semana que viene – In this case, you explicit the day you will see the other person again.
Nos vemos / Hablemos – If you are not certain when you are gong to meet the other person again, but you want to keep in touch, you may use these phsases.
Cuidate / Que sigas bien – If you are saying goodbye to a person you care about, you can use cuidate (take care) orque sigas bien to express your interest.
Buen fin de semana / Buen finde – It is the short version of “Espero que tengas un buen fin de semana” (¡Subjuntuvo!). You can use it when you say goodbye to someone on Fridays.
Un gusto conocerte / Un placer –Formula to express that you enjoy the other person’s company. It is formal.
Saludos a Juan / a tu mujer /a tus hijos – It is used to say hello to other people, which are not present at the moment (Say hi to Juan / to your wife / to your kids)
Adiós – A very formal version of chau.
And remember that in Buenos Aires the people will kiss you to say hello and again (yes again!) to say goodbye. If this is a bit weird for you, here’s a tip: do not resist this sweet habit, just relax and enjoy it!!