It makes no difference whether you are an early riser or not, every day must come to an end and you must go to bed at some point. As a German language learner, you won’t be able to avoid saying goodnight in German.

It is just as important to learn how to say good night in German as to ask “How are you?” or “Hello” in German. The evening is referred to as “der Abend,” while the night is referred to as “die Nacht,” and the terms are not interchangeable as they are in English.

If you say “Gute Nacht” (good night) in German, it means you’re about to go to bed. If you say “Gute Nacht” to someone as you leave the office at 6 p.m., Germans may assume you are going to bed and give you a strange look. So, in German, good evening and goodnight are not synonymous.

Good eveningGuten Abend[ˌɡuːtən ˈaːbənt]A formal greeting
Good eveningN’Abend[ˈnaːbmt]A greeting, short form
Goodnight!Schönen Abend noch![ˌɡuːtən ˈaːbənt nɔx]A good-bye
Goodnight, my friendGute Nacht, mein Freund / meine Freundin[ ˈgu:tə naxt maɪ̯n fʁɔʏ̯nt / ˈmaɪ̯nə ˈfʁɔʏ̯ndɪn]Sometimes used among friends
Have a good night!Hab noch einen schönen Abend![ha:p nɔx ˈaɪ̯nən ˈʃø:nən ˈa:bənt]A good-bye, singularLiterally: Enjoy the rest of your evening
Have a good night!Habt noch einen schönen Abend![ha:pt nɔx ˈaɪ̯nən ˈʃø:nən ˈa:bənt]A good-bye, pluralLiterally: Enjoy the rest of your evening
Get home well (be safe)Komm gut nach Hause[kɔm gu:t na:x ˈhaʊ̯zə]A common goodbye at the end of an evening spent together
Drive safelyFahr vorsichtig[fa:ɐ̯ ˈfo:ɐ̯zɪçtɪç]When someone is leaving by car at the end of the night
Text me when you get homeSchreib mir, wenn du zuhause bist[ʃʁaɪ̯p mi:ɐ̯ vɛn du: tsuˈhaʊ̯zə bɪst]Especially used with close friends and family

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Romantic ways to say good night in German

Do you have a German crush? Perhaps you have a date coming up and want to impress your date? You must, of course, know how to say goodnight in German.

Remember to say “schönen Abend” when leaving for the night and “gute Nacht” when the date went exceptionally well so you should also learn how to say good morning in German.

Goodnight, my loveGute Nacht, mein Liebling[ˌɡutə ˈnaxt maɪ̯n ˈliːplɪŋ]
Goodnight, sweet dreamsGute Nacht, süße Träume[ˌɡutə ˈnaxt ˈzyːsə ˈtʁɔɪ̯mə]
Goodnight, babyGute Nacht, Baby[ˌɡutə ˈnaxt ˈbeɪbiː]
Sweet dreamsSüße Träume[ˈzyːsə ˈtʁɔɪ̯mə]
What a beautiful nightWas für ein schöner Abend[vas fy:ɐ̯ aɪ̯n ˈʃø:nɐ ˈa:bənt]
I had a lot of fun tonightIch hatte heute Abend viel Spaß[ɪç ˈhatə ˈhɔʏ̯tə ˈa:bənt fi:l ʃpas]
May I kiss you goodnight?Darf ich dir einen Gute-Nacht-Kuss geben?[daɐ̯f ɪç di:ɐ̯ ˈaɪ̯nən gu:təˈnaxtkʊs ˈge:bən]
I’m gonna miss you while you’re sleepingDu wirst mir fehlen, während du schläfst[du: vɪɐ̯st mi:ɐ̯ ˈfe:lən ˈvɛ:ʁənt du: ʃlɛfst]

Other ways of saying good evening/night in German

There are several other ways to say goodnight in German. If you can’t decide, you can always look through the list of ways to say goodbye in German and pick any of them.

It’s bedtimeEs ist Schlafenszeit[ɛs ɪst ˈʃla:fənst͡saɪ̯t]
I have to be at work early tomorrowIch muss morgen früh bei der Arbeit sein[ɪç mʊs ˈmɔɐ̯gən fʁy: baɪ̯ de:ɐ̯ ˈaɐ̯baɪ̯t zaɪ̯n]
I should probably get some sleepIch sollte wahrscheinlich schlafen gehen[ɪç ˈzɔltə va:ʁˈʃaɪ̯nlɪç ˈʃla:fən ˈge:ən]
I’m gonna get ready for bedIch mach mich ‘mal bettfertig[ɪç max mɪç ma:l ˈbɛtfɛɐ̯tɪç]
I’ll go brush my teethIch geh Zähne putzen[ɪç ge: ˈtsɛ:nə ˈpʊt͡sən]
I’m gonna change into my pajamasIch geh mir meinen Schlafanzug anziehen[ɪç ge: mi:ɐ̯ ˈmaɪ̯nən ˈʃlafant͡su:k ˈantsi:ən]
I’m going to bedIch geh ins Bett[ɪç ge: ɪns bɛt]
Have nice dreamsTräum ‘was Schönes[tʁɔʏ̯m vas ˈʃø:nəs]
Sleep wellSchlaf schön[ʃla:f ʃø:n]
I’ll see you in the morningWir sehen uns am Morgen[vi:ɐ̯ ˈze:ən ʊns am ˈmɔɐ̯gən]

Now that you know different ways to say good night in German you are ready to leave a good and positive impression on people. Apart from this, you can also learn to say thank you in the German language as these phrases hold an important part in daily conversations. They also give you an opportunity to get closer to the people around you.

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Frequently asked questions

Q. What does Güt Nacht mean?

A. Gute Nacht is the most common and widely used expression to say “good night” in German

Q. How do you say goodnight in German for a friend?

A. You can say ‘Gute Nacht, mein Freund / meine Freundin’ (Good night, my friend).

Q. How do you respond to Gute Nacht?

A. You can simply say ‘dir auch’ or just repeat the phrase used.


Sleep is an important part of language learning. According to a Berkeley study, taking a one-hour nap in between studying sessions will help your brain perform better and give you the energy to continue your studies. This is one of the most effective tips for learning German fast. Along with this, there are several other tips that can help you learn the language.

Start by learning common phrases such as thank you, good morning, and good night in German. Try using these greetings in your daily conversations. It will make you sound like a German speaker. Make flashcards carrying all the useful greetings and phrases. Keep memorizing them until you get them at your fingertips.

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