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Shoreditch

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Can I greet an elderly lady with a "hi" without being unpolite? If not, what is the proper greeting?
Good morning, good evening: I rarely hear these. Cheers is quite frequent, but as far as I can tell from the usage patterns I observed so far, people not only mean hello by cheers but thank you as well. Correct?
 

Route21

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As an NES, but not a teacher, I would have no problem with "hi!", unless it was in a formal situation.
It would be seen as a friendly gesture.

I use "good morning" when greeting my (Thai) mother-in-law in the morning, she responds with "mornin'" and honour is satisfied. The Thai greeting "sawatdi krap" sounds somewhat South African.

I reserve "good afternoon/evening" for when my wife's daughter surfaces from her room after a night out!

Regards
R21
 
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bhaisahab

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Can I greet an elderly lady with a "hi" without being unpolite? If not, what is the proper greeting?
Good morning, good evening: I rarely hear these. Cheers is quite frequent, but as far as I can tell from the usage patterns I observed so far, people not only mean hello by cheers but thank you as well. Correct?

In my experience "cheers" is not used as a greeting.
 

Shoreditch

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"Surfaces from her room" means comes out like a snail from his house?

impolite not unpolite :oops:
 

Route21

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Hi Shoreditch

I think that you get the point.
It's a friendly but pointed remark that may be true in the case of the afternoon but might be exaggerated a little for effect.
It's received with a smile and appropriately proper reply.

Regards
R21
 

5jj

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Can I greet an elderly lady with a "hi" without being unpolite? If not, what is the proper greeting?
Good morning, good evening: I rarely hear these.
As a middle-aged (!) man, I prefer not to be greeted by young people with 'Hi/cheers/what's up?/etc'; I also do not like being addressed as 'dude/man/bro/mate/etc'. :snipersm:.
 

Gillnetter

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Can I greet an elderly lady with a "hi" without being unpolite? If not, what is the proper greeting?
Good morning, good evening: I rarely hear these. Cheers is quite frequent, but as far as I can tell from the usage patterns I observed so far, people not only mean hello by cheers but thank you as well. Correct?
About the only time one would hear "cheers" in the US is when some people are drinking alcoholic beverages. It is used as a toast of sorts and means "To your health". As to whether or not you should use "hi" when addressing an elderly person, it depends on the person. If you are acquainted with the elderly person a "hi" may be acceptable. If it is a first meeting, I would opt for "good morning, afternoon, or evening".
 

Rover_KE

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Can I greet an elderly lady with a "hi" without being impolite?

Yes you can, in most situations. An exception might be if you were a sales assistant at an expensive jewellery store and an elderly lady you knew to be a dowager duchess entered.

Cheers is quite frequent, but as far as I can tell from the usage patterns I observed so far, people not only mean hello by cheers but thank you as well. Correct?

'Cheers' is not used as a greeting, but is said mainly by male adolescents who consider it uncool to utter the words 'Thank you'.

Rover
 

emsr2d2

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To be honest (and I'm surprised no-one else has said this), I would say that you can't go wrong with "Hello". There are plenty of situations where "Good morning/afternoon/evening" is just a bit too formal and "Hi" a little too informal.
 

emsr2d2

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'Cheers' is not used as a greeting, but is said mainly by male adolescents who consider it uncool to utter the words 'Thank you'.

Rover

As a forty-something female, I don't often find myself being referred to as a "male adolescent"! I use "Cheers" on a regular basis in place of "Thanks".
 

Rover_KE

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As a forty-something female, I don't often find myself being referred to as a "male adolescent"! I use "Cheers" on a regular basis in place of "Thanks".

You surprise me, ma'am.
 

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To be honest (and I'm surprised no-one else has said this), I would say that you can't go wrong with "Hello". There are plenty of situations where "Good morning/afternoon/evening" is just a bit too formal and "Hi" a little too informal.

It might get repetitious, but I can't imagine a "good morning" as being "too formal."
 

emsr2d2

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I would say "Good morning" at the start of a 10am job interview. In most other situations, I would drop the "Good" and just go with "Morning" in a chatty, friendly voice. At 7am, I tend to practically sing "Morning" in an obscenely cheerful voice, in order to irritate anyone who isn't a morning person. ;-)
 

Route21

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In most other situations, I would drop the "Good" and just go with "Morning" in a chatty, friendly voice. . ;-)

Just like my mother-in-law's "Mornin'!". ;-)

R21
 

Tdol

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How well do you know this older person? If it's a stranger, Hi may come across as too familiar and a bit odd, but if you know them well, then it'll be fine.
 
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