Ways to Say YOU’RE WELCOME

Today I would like to share alternative ways to say you’re welcome in different situations: formal, informal, and slang. Let’s take a look.


Informal


I want to start with informal situations because they are the most common, and therefore the most useful. Each way to say you’re welcome fits a certain type of situation, though some may be more frequently used than others. I’ll start with the most popular and move toward the least popular.

No Problem/Not a Problem— This is a very relaxed and friendly alternative to the overused and rather stiff you’re welcome. When someone says, “no problem,” they are really saying, “Doing this for you is not a problem,” they’ve just shortened the sentence into something much simpler and usable in everyday language. I use this phrase with friends, family, and co-workers I have a good relationship with, and even my boss depending on the situation. The only time I wouldn’t feel comfortable using this phrase is if I were in a very serious situation, or if I were with someone who needed to be spoken to with a high level of respect and formality. Again, this is a very relaxed and common phrase, and a great alternative to use almost anytime you want to say you’re welcome in a different way. 

Sure/Sure Thing— I see this word/phrase as an acknowledgment to someone saying thank you for a very simple task—perhaps something like getting a person a drink or opening the door. Instead of saying a very a sincere and involved you’re welcome, you can simply nod, smile, and say, “sure.” I very often use this phrase when talking with strangers my own age. 

No Big Deal—By saying this, you are suggesting that what you have done for someone was very easy for you and that it should not be thought of as difficult or burdensome. However, when I use this, I often am trying to sound nicer than I really am. For example: A good friend of mine always asks me to drop him off at the air port when he travels back home for the holidays. The airport is 40 minutes away from where I live, so it adds up to a lot of driving. Whenever I drop him off he repeats how thankful he is several times, and with each thank you I always respond, “It’s no big deal.” However, If I were to be truthful, I would say, “Yes, I took a large amount of time out of my day…you’re welcome.” This is a really common phrase, and one I use almost daily.

You Got It—This phrase is often used when someone is asked to do something, but they haven’t yet done it. So, it can be used before whatever is being asked is done. For example, maybe your roommate asks you to take out the garbage before you leave for work. Saying, “you’re welcome,” wouldn’t make sense in this situation, and saying “Ok,” is a bit boring and simple. This is where “you got it,” could work perfectly. 

Not At All/Don’t Mention It/It Was Nothing— These phrases are very similar to each other and both suggest what you’ve done was simple and not deserving of a thank you. Perhaps when thanked for opening a door for a stranger you could say, “not at all,” to suggest it really wasn’t that big of a problem for you. These are not phrases I use often–both of them are more commonly spoken by an older generation. Still, you may find them useful.


Formal


You’re Welcome—You’re welcome can be used in both formal and informal situations, though I consider it to be more formal. This is not always true, but normally “you’re welcome” sounds very sincere. For example, I recently bought my girlfriend an engagement ring. When I gave it to her she was extremely happy and thanked me very sincerely and honestly. Because the ring was very special to both of us, and I felt the situation had a larger importance, I said, “you’re welcome,” to make sure she knew I really wanted the ring to be special. Now, this is an extreme case. You could also say you’re welcome when paying at a convenience store, or when opening the door for a stranger, it all just depends how you want to be perceived. I often think of people who say you’re welcome as a bit more serious and formal.

My Pleasure—I often use this phrase when I have done something that deserves a thank you and it has been something I have enjoyed doing—or at least I say I enjoyed it. For example, maybe my family is coming over for dinner and I have to cook dinner. This takes a lot of work, yes, but I enjoy doing it because I know my family will appreciate it. When everyone thanks me for dinner after they have eaten, saying “my pleasure,” is the perfect phrase.

Anytime/Certainly/Absolutely—These phrases are similar to saying sure/sure thing, though they are a bit more formal (specifically certainly). I often use these with superiors, or with students. For example, if a student thanks me for answering a question on WeChat after class, I could respond, “anytime,” “Absolutely,” or “Certainly,” which would suggest I don’t mind answering questions. Similarly, I could respond the same if my boss thanks me for working an extra hour beyond my schedule. In both situations I am showing respect and a positive attitude toward what I am doing.


Slang


No Worries/No Biggie— These phrases are similar to don’t mention it or it was nothing. In saying this, you are suggesting that the person thank you should not worry about expressing their appreciation because what you’ve done for them was very simple or easy. I often use this with close friends.

Yep/Yup—This is a very casual and dismissive way of saying you’re welcome. In saying this, it is almost as if you don’t want a thank you at all, and you’d rather just continue with your conversation. Again, this is used with close friends or family.

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