Hi vs. Hello

I'm sure you've thought about the differences and similarities between these two words for greeting at least once, haven't you? Well, let's learn about them.

"Hi" vs. "Hello" in English

What Is Their Main Difference?

Both of these words are used when we want to greet someone. However, 'hello' is more formal, whereas, 'hi' is a friendly term.


We mainly use 'hello' when we want to greet someone in a formal context. 'Hi', on the other hand, is mainly used to greet our friends, families, and close relatives. Check out the following examples:

Hello? Is anybody in the living room?

Hello, I'd like to meet a reservation for three nights under the name of McAdams.

Hi guys! Long time no see!

Hi Janice, I never thought we would see each other again.


As stated above, we can use either words to greet someone. Look at the examples below:

Hi there. It's me from the grocery shop.

Hello. My name is Sara.

Are They Interchangeable?

Many native speakers have used these terms interchangeably, but be careful that if you are at a business meeting and say 'hi' to the members there, you will be embarrassed. Compare:

Hi. I'd like to talk to the manager please.

Hello. I'd like to talk to the manager please.


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